A romantic dinner at home will not only impress your partner and show off your cooking skills, but its also much more economical and intimate than eating out.
If you’re looking to pull off the perfect romantic dinner, then keep reading. Here is the ultimate guide for hosting a romantic and successful dinner at home.
1. Set the Table
To have a truly special dinner, use special dinnerware. This dinner and everything about it should stand apart from your typical dinners at home.
If you have them, bring out your finest dishes, silverware, cloth napkins, and wine glasses. Even if you’re not drinking alcohol, wine glasses look elegant and provide a romantic feel to the table.
Set the table as you would see in a fine dining restaurant. Use different types of plates, bowls, and silverware to fit your menu. For example, if you’re having a salad before your main dish, set out a salad fork and the main dish fork.
2. Fresh Flowers
Flowers are the surest and easiest way to turn a dinner into a romantic setting. Set a vase with a few flowers on the table or lay rose petals on the table.
Be sure not to overdo it with the flowers though. You don’t want them to be too tall or large that you cannot see over them or they take up too much space.
The best part about flowers is that they can work in any setting. They will look just as good on your table the following day.
Candles are a must-have for romantic dinners. They set the mood to intimate, relaxed, and sensual. Set lighted candles on the table or around the room.
Really any type and size of candles will work. We recommend using unscented candles, though. You don’t want to candle smell to be overpowering and interfere with the smells of the food.
4. Eliminate Distractions
Distractions can ruin a romantic dinner. Before the date, be sure to make arrangements for a babysitter, pet sitter, and let work know you’re not to be bothered. Also, choose a night where distractions are less likely.
Turn phones on silent or off and make sure other devices are turned off such as TVs. A nice way to eliminate distractions while also getting rid of awkward silence is to play soft romantic music (jazz always works) in the background.
Check out the ten most romantic songs by Michael Jackson. Keep the music low enough that it isn’t distracting.
5. Plan Multiple Courses
Plan your menu well in advance so you have everything you need for the perfect romantic dinner. Your dinner should have multiple courses such as you would get if you were eating out at a fancy restaurant.
Make sure to go the store a day or more in advance, too. This will help make sure you’re not rushed on the big day.
6. Ready Apps
For the appetizer, choose something light and simple. Have the apps ready to serve directly after you pour the drinks. Finger apps will be easiest, as it will allow you to enjoy them while finishing up or setting the main dish.
Some great appetizer ideas include bruschetta, stuffed mushrooms, bread, and oil or spinach dip, cheese plates, or a Caprese salad.
7. Easy Main Dish
The main course should be something that won’t take more than an hour. You should have the main course halfway cooked or at least ready to go in the oven when your date arrives if it doesn’t take long to cook. You can enjoy drinks and apps while it finishes cooking.
An easy and yummy main dish idea is oven baked chicken that will have your man reaching for seconds. Read more here for a recipe.
Other fail-free dishes include baked fish and vegetables, light pasta, and lasagna. Choose foods that aren’t too difficult to eat and do not contain too much onion or garlic (you don’t want bad breath). Also be sure not to go to heavy on spice, in case your partner can’t handle spicy foods.
8. Prep Ahead of Time
This step is so important to make sure the night goes smoothly. Have your apps prepared before the dinner starts.
Make sure all your produce is chopped and ready to be cooked. Pre-season everything so all you have to do is throw it in the oven. Make it even easier on yourself and already have everything cooked and sitting on warm.
Have dessert cut and portioned, too. This way it is ready to be served directly after dinner.
Another tip is to have a backup. In case something goes wrong and the food turns out inedible, always have something in the fridge ready to prepare quickly.
9. Start with Drinks
Whether you drink alcohol or not, drinks should always be the place to start during a romantic evening meal.
Have water and wine at the table so you are not getting up and down to refill. Plus, wine bottles add elegance to the table setting. Keep the water in a nice pitcher and have lemon slices available.
If you are drinkers, wine is the perfect choice for a romantic dinner. It is thought to be an aphrodisiac and is connected with romance. Plan to have wines that pair well with the meal you’re serving.
10. Don’t Forget Dessert
Not only are desserts special and romantic, but many of them contain aphrodisiac foods. Chocolate, bananas, strawberries, cherries, honey, whipped cream, and coffee are just some foods that may get your date turned on.
Have your dessert prepped and waiting in the refrigerator. Serve something small and refreshing as not to overstuff your tummies. Some good ideas include chocolate covered strawberries with whipped cream for dipping, banana cake or pie, or brownies with cherries and whipped cream or ice cream on top.
Ready for Your Romantic Dinner?
Follow this guide and your romantic dinner at home will be more than a success!