Grilled Oysters with garlic butter

Valentine’s Day date recipes

Cooking for your Valentine can be a minefield. Do you go super romantic? Try something different? What if you’re pressed for time, or can’t get a babysitter? Here at olive we’ve come up with seven different menu ideas for Valentine's Day to help you have the perfect evening whatever situation you’re in

Whether you’re looking to wow your Valentine’s date with your culinary skills and a romantic meal for two, or simply want to avoid the formality of a restaurant setting, here at olive we have crafted perfect menus for every situation.


Left it to the last minute? Fear not! Our collection of quick romantic recipes will take you no time at all to rustle up. Or perhaps you’re embracing Galentine’s Day and hosting a girls night in? Look no further than these Valentine’s Day dinner recipes, featuring everything from grilled oysters and champagne cocktails to a romantic steak dinner, cheesy garlic bread and self-saucing chocolate pudding. If you’re stuck on what to get your loved ones this year, check out our guide on the best food gifts for Valentine’s Day, here

Looking to impress

Want to wow your Valentine with your culinary expertise and sophisticated style this Valentine’s Day? Look no further than this classic menu, featuring oysters, steak and rich dark chocolate. If you’re looking for more showstopping dinner party main course, check out our guide, here

Aperitif: Homemade grenadine and champagne cocktails

Get your romantic Valentine’s evening off to a sparkling start with these striking champagne cocktails. If you’re looking for more Champagne cocktail ideas, read our guide, here


To start: Grilled oysters with garlic butter

Famously aphrodisiac, oysters embody the luxury of Valentine’s Day. Excite your date with this simple but impressive recipe.

Grilled Oysters with garlic butter

Main course: Steak with creamy peppercorn sauce

Easy to rustle up, this rump steak recipe with creamy peppercorn sauce is an indulgence that’s quick to make.

steak with creamy peppercorn steak

Dessert: Nutty caramel tart with coffee ganache

Edd Kimber’s nutty caramel chocolate tart with coffee ganache is a rich, indulgent dessert. An impressive way to end a meal on Valentine’s Day. We’ve got even more chocolate tart inspiration, here

Caramel Tart Recipe with Chocolate Ganache, Nuts and Coffee

Long term relationship

Surprise that special someone and remind them just how much they mean to you with this menu that avoids conventional options while oozing refinement and sincerity. If you’re looking for an alternative main course and want to jazz up a bowl of pasta, check out our guide to posh pasta recipes

To start: Whipped goat’s cheese with baked figs

Simple to whip up, the lesser-known aphrodisiac quality of figs suggests subtle but sophisticated romance. A cute and colourful Valentine’s Day idea.


Main course: Hidden-egg-yolk ravioli with crispy sage and ’nduja oil

This handmade ravioli with hidden egg yolk is really impressive with crispy sage and ’nduja oil. Cut into the pasta to reveal the bursting egg for a showstopping dish this Valentine’s Day.

Egg Filled Ravioli Recipe with Sage

Dessert: Pistachio and white chocolate soufflé

End your evening on a luxurious note with these light-as-air soufflés made with pistachio paste and white chocolate ganache.

Pistachio and white chocolate soufflé

Fun and light hearted

New relationships can be tricky on Valentine’s Day. If you want to keep things casual and light-hearted, try out this colourful menu, which steers clear of all the traditional stereotypes. If you want to get hands on in the kitchen, check out our guide to the best pizza recipes, here

To start: 4 quick and easy camembert toppers

Get your Valentine’s Day off to a cheesy start with these baked camembert toppers, a fun and easy way to begin your meal. If you need even more cheese in your life, check out all our ideas, here

4 Quick and Easy Baked Camembert Recipes

Main course: Roasted broccoli and feta flatbreads

Bursting with colour and flavour, this vegetarian main keeps things casual, although the pomegranate seeds and red chilli add subtle romantic undertones.

Roasted broccoli and feta flatbreads

Dessert: Olive oil chocolate pots with orange and sea salt

Easy to prepare in advance, these olive oil chocolate pots with orange and sea salt are an indulgent dessert with a sweet freshness from the orange.

Olive Oil Chocolate Pots With Orange and Sea Salt Recipe

Restaurant style

Fancy treating your guest to gourmet restaurant-style food but want to stay in the intimate setting of your own home? If you’ve got all day to prepare, take a look at these fancy recipes from restaurants around the country. Take you cooking to the next level with our dinner party menu from Tommy Banks, here

To start: Glazed lokma doughnuts with spiced chicken liver parfait

This recipe for glazed lokma doughnuts with spiced chicken liver parfait comes from Le Bab in London and makes an impressive starter, full of unusual and delicious flavour combinations.


Main course: Beef brisket massaman curry

A hearty dish from Terry Blake’s south London restaurant, Sparrow. This beef brisket recipe is easy to make but takes a little time so best to start preparing early.

Beef brisket massaman curry Sparrow

Dessert: Jasmine set custard with strawberry sorbet

Delight your Valentine with this elegant dessert from Bulrush in Bristol. It’s a bit of a challenge, but your hard work will pay off.


Left it to the last minute

Somehow missed the stands of heart-shaped chocolates at the end of every supermarket aisle? Restaurant double booked? Fear not! olive is here to save the day with our menu requiring as little preparation time as possible. If you need a speedy meal in only 15 minutes, check out our guide to our 29 quickest recipes, here

Aperitif: A clementine ‘last minute’ cocktail

Need to buy yourself a few extra minutes? Whip up this fruity cocktail to delight your guest while you finish off in the kitchen.

A clementine ‘last minute’ cocktail

To start: Melon and prosciutto

Ready in just 5 minutes, this classic sweet-and-savoury starter is both refined and refreshing – a great way to start your Valentine’s Day meal.


Main course: Salmon with pesto crust

A light dish for a weeknight, this salmon with pesto crust served with green beans is easy to make. You wouldn’t guess it only takes 15 minutes to make.

Salmon Recipe With Pesto Sauce Crust

Dessert: Blood orange and amaretti trifles

Sweet and creamy topped with nutty amaretti biscuits, these trifles are easy to whip them up in just 15 minutes then pop them into the fridge to chill for a couple of hours before eating. A fruity way to end your romantic meal.

Blood Orange Trifle Recipe With Amaretti

Galentine’s’ Day

Being single is no reason to wallow on Valentine’s Day. Get your closest girlfriends together for a night of indulgence and fun, and let them know how much they mean to you. If you need some extra indulgence in your evening, check out our guide to the best macaroni and cheese recipes, here

Aperitif: Pink lemonade cocktail

Deliciously pink and sweet, the perfect way to kick off your girls’ night.


To start: Cheese, onion and sriracha garlic bread

Valentine’s Day is the perfect excuse to get all your single ladies together… and the best thing is garlic isn’t off limits!

Cheesy Garlic Bread with Sriracha Hot Sauce

Main course: Mix and match mac ‘n’ cheese bar

Place this comforting cheesy dish the middle of the table surrounded with the toppings in little bowls and let everyone dig in – no need for fancy presentation.

Mix and match mac 'n' cheese bar

Dessert: Peanut butter and banana self-saucing chocolate pudding

We love an indulgent dessert and this chocolate self-saucing pudding is just that. Everybody grab and spoon and dig in…just don’t forget the side of ice cream. If you need more self-saucing pudding recipes, check out our guide, here

Peanut butter and banana self saucing pudding

Family night in

Just because you’re in with the family doesn’t mean you can’t embrace Valentine’s Day! Check out these tasty recipes loved by kids and adults alike. If you need some extra inspiration, check out our guide to the best ever family friendly recipes, here

To start: Cheesy garlic dough balls

Why not get the kids involved in helping roll the mozzarella cubes into these cheesy garlic dough balls? These cheesy dough balls are a fun way to start your family Valentine’s meal.


Main course: Best-ever spaghetti bolognese

Our favourite bolognese recipe, with pancetta, pork sausages and lots of herbs and veggies to really ramp up the flavour. Make it in a slow cooker to give yourself more time for family doughball production!


Dessert: Malted milk and caramel ice-cream pie

A fun, easy, prepare-in-advance recipe that kids will adore and adults will secretly enjoy too. A real treat for Valentines Day.

Malted milk and caramel ice-cream pie


Written by Rachel Dinsdale