20 Date Night Dinner Ideas

Check out these date night dinner ideas that will impress your date- great for Valentine's Day, a special anniversary, first date or surprise

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Whether it’s for Valentine’s Day, a special anniversary, a first date, or just a nice surprise – here are 20 Date Night Dinner Ideas that are bound to impress! These romantic recipes are easy to make, look gorgeous and pack in the flavor! From delicious pasta to succulent salmon and much more, one bite from these dishes and love will definitely be in the air!

Recipe roundup /collection of date night dinners - valentine's day

Table of Contents

  1. Tips for date night dinner
  2. date night dinner ideas
  3. Other date night ideas
  4. Full list of recipes

Turn your living room into a top-notch restaurant with these 20 Date Night Dinner Ideas. These recipes are simple to make (they’re also fun to cook together!), and they look like they’ve just come from a fancy restaurant. Win, win! From succulent shrimp dishes to flavor-packed risotto, pamper the one you love with one of these delicious dishes, guaranteed to please the palette!

Tips for date night dinner

  1. Know your date’s preferences. It may seem obvious, but when cooking a date night dinner, keep in mind the likes and dislikes of your date. What are their favorite foods and ingredients? Do they have any food allergies or intolerances? Do they love a certain cuisine or chef?
  2. Prep ahead. Choosing a recipe that can be prepped ahead of the evening will leave you more time to entertain your date!
  3. Choose some simple appetizers that don’t overpower the main dish! When it comes to appetizers, you can keep life simple and delicious with some Tomato Basil Bruschetta or Cucumber Sushi Rolls!
  4. Pick short cut pastas for less messy bites. If you’re choosing pasta, instead of long strands of tangling spaghetti or fettuccine, choose penne pasta, orzo, tortellini, or ravioli.
  5. Include some foods that are aphrodisiacs for an even more romantic night. These foods include oysters, almonds, basil, and asparagus! 😉
Pumpkin risotto in a small bowl with parmesan cheese on the side

date night dinner ideas

Here are a few romantic recipes to cook up when spending an evening creating and dining on a delicious meal for date night at home.

Best date night pasta

  • Baked Feta Pasta – The dish is pretty much hands-off, and all the magic happens in the oven which means more time to spend a romantic evening together.
  • Cheese Stuffed Shells – Filled with a creamy ricotta cheese blend and baked with marinara sauce, these stuffed shells are perfect to serve for dinner or as a side dish.
  • Pesto Pasta with Chicken – Perfectly charred and seasoned grilled chicken breast paired with a herbaceous pesto pasta. It’s a meal that comes together quickly without losing any flavor. 
  • Yogurt Sauce Pasta – This Lebanese spaghetti is simple to make, very flavorful, and comes out creamy and delicious finished with toasted pine nuts!

Romanitic seafood dinner

  • Shrimp Scampi with Zucchini Noodles – This recipe takes the classic flavor of scampi and toss it with thin zoodles instead of pasta for a light and refreshing seafood date night dinner.
  • Garlic Cilantro Baked Salmon – Tender flakey salmon is infused with the best fresh and herby garlic cilantro aromatics. Serve of any type of grain with a fresh squeeze lime.
  • Creamy Red Curry Shrimp: So much flavor is packed into this one pot dinner with the most irresistible creamy sauce with a punch of heat to really take it over the top.
  • Chili Lime Shrimp – Marinated and pan fried, these succulent shrimps are full of flavor and a quick way to serve a delicious date night meal.
  • Honey Lemon Salmon – Glazed with a sweet citrus sauce, this salmon will impress your date with a burst of flavor and warm tender flakes.
  • Pan Seared Scallops – Cooking scallops at home is actually easier than you think, and the result is juicy tender pieces of fish that are perfect to toss with pasta.

Chicken dinner ideas

  • Chicken Thighs with Couscous – Crispy browned skin and the most delicious and juicy meat, this skillet chicken is cooked in one pan with a filling flavorful couscous. It sounds fancy, but couscous is easy to make and so good.
  • Lemon Chicken Piccata – This restaurant quality lemon piccata chicken has a beautifully bright and vibrant flavor that’s made healthier with a few substitutions to the classic.
  • Whole Roasted Rosemary Chicken – Roasting a whole chicken in a buttery herb sauce with shallots is such a romantic dinner to make. Serve with roasted potatoes and crisp tender cauliflower for a full meal.
  • Baked Balsamic Chicken – The sweet and tangy combination of balsamic and honey bring a new level of flavor to chicken breast. It cooks up tender and juicy and is simple to make.
  • Almond Crusted Chicken – Roasted almonds are ground into a breadcrumb size texture and tossed with parmesan cheese to coat these chicken cutlets and cook until crisp and golden brown. 

Vegetarian date night dinners

  • Pumpkin Risotto – Creamy with the best pumpkin-y flavor, this is made with just a few ingredients and can be served as a vegetarian entrée or as a side.
  • Baked Eggplant Parmesan – Full of the same great flavors you love, this is a lighter version of the classic chicken parmesan full of melty cheese and red sauce.
  • Spinach Lasagna Roll ups – Saucy, cheese, and full of spinach and ricotta, this twist on lasagna has a beautiful presentation and taste amazing. A small side salad and garlic bread really rounds this dish out for a romantic vegetarian Italian dinner.
  • Vegan Meatballs – What’s better than a plate full of spaghetti in meatballs? This is a classic romantic dinner that’s meat free and delicious.
  • Ratatouille – It’s a very hearty dish has a wonderfully light and fresh flavor since it’s loaded with color and and nutrient dense ingredients. The best part is you can make it quickly in one pot!

Other date night ideas

Full list of recipes

Check out the picture cards for all the recipes listed above. You can click on any of the recipe cards to take you directly to those recipes.

Baked feta pasta.
Dinner, Entree, Pastas

Baked Feta Pasta

Baked feta pasta is a simple recipe made by oven roasting a block of feta cheese with cherry tomatoes to create a salty and cheesy sauce!
40 minutes
5 from 11157 votes
Cheese stuffed shells in a white oval baking dish topped with fresh basil

Cheese Stuffed Shells

These Cheese Stuffed Shells are made with ricotta, mozzarella and parmesan cheese; and baked in a marinara sauce. It's an easy weekday family friendly meal!
55 minutes
5 from 87 votes
Finished pasta in dish tossed in pesto and topped with sliced chicken, basil, and lemon.
Main Course

Pesto Pasta with Chicken

Pesto pasta topped with smoky grilled chicken a squeeze of lemon and fresh basil. This pesto pasta is easy to make and bursting with so much flavor!
20 minutes
5 from 86 votes
Spaghetti in Yogurt Sauce topped with pine nuts and chopped herbs, served in large white bowl.
Dinner, Entree, Pastas, Side Dish

Pasta with Yogurt Sauce

This creamy pasta with white yogurt sauce also known as Lebanese spaghetti is the perfect substitute for Alfredo sauce. It's creamy, tangy & easy to make!
20 minutes
5 from 86 votes
Healthy shrimp scampi made with half pasta and half zucchini topped with lemon slices
Main Course

Healthy Shrimp Scampi with Zucchini Noodles

Healthy Shrimp Scampi combines the classic flavors of the dish with simple swaps like using zoodles zucchini noodles instead of pasta for a lighter meal!
15 minutes
5 from 196 votes
Garlic Cilantro Oven Baked Salmon in a white shallow bowl over rice with lime wedges

Garlic Cilantro Salmon

This Garlic Cilantro Oven Baked Salmon is easy to prepare and is a healthy quick option for the busy weekdays that the whole family will enjoy
25 minutes
5 from 144 votes
Coconut shrimp curry in pot garnished with a drizzle of coconut milk on top, clinatro, and lime wedges.

Red Shrimp Coconut Curry

Thai-inspired red shrimp curry with coconut milk, red curry paste, fresh cilantro & lime. This shrimp curry is bright & bold – you won't want to stop eating it!
30 minutes
5 from 47 votes
Final cooked cilantro and chili lime shrimp
Main Course

Chili Lime Shrimp

These delicious chili and lime shrimp are loaded with flavor and perfect for a quick and easy low carb meal. Made with simple ingredients and quick to cook.
40 minutes
5 from 243 votes
Flipping the salmon over to sear the skin side

Honey Lemon Salmon

You can make this Honey Lemon Salmon with only a handful of ingredients and any skillet. It's quick & easy for healthy weeknight dinners or fancy occasions
20 minutes
5 from 66 votes
Two large bowls of pan seared scallops with cherry tomatoes and linguine pasta

Pan Seared Scallops with Pasta

A light, bright and completely flavor-packed Pan Seared Scallops with Pasta – perfect for summer days when you're craving carbs but want something unique
25 minutes
5 from 148 votes
Final outcome of the skillet chicken with couscous shown in the cast iron skillet

Skillet Chicken with Couscous

This Skillet Chicken with Couscous is an easy dinner recipe for any night of the week. It’s full of great flavor, very filling, and all made in one skillet!
30 minutes
5 from 225 votes
Lemon chicken piccata served with capers
Entree, Main Course, Main Dish

Lemon Chicken Piccata

This Lemon Chicken Piccata is a quick and easy healthy version of the original recipe, that's grain-free, Whole30 and Paleo, but with the same great taste!
28 minutes
5 from 81 votes
Whole roasted chicken with rosemary and shallots in a cast iron pan with carving knife nearyby.
Entree, Main Dish

Lemon Rosemary Roasted Whole Chicken

This Lemon Rosemary Roasted Whole Chicken has the best crispy, buttery skin and juicy meat cooked over shallots for an easy chicken dinner prepared in one pan.
2 hours 20 minutes
5 from 8 votes
Plate of baked balsamic chicken
Entree, Main Dish

Oven Baked Balsamic Chicken

This Oven Baked Chicken recipe is a delicious weeknight dinner. With flavors of honey and balsamic vinegar, you know it's going to be good!
35 minutes
5 from 159 votes
Large serving platter with 5 almond crusted chicken breasts and a fork lifting one up.

Almond Crusted Chicken

This Almond Crusted Chicken is crunchy and juicy, ready in 30 minutes with only a few ingredients. If you haven't tried nuts for coating your chicken, It's a must-have!
30 minutes
5 from 34 votes
Pumpkin risotto in a small bowl with parmesan cheese on the side
Main Course

Pumpkin Risotto

Made with jasmine rice, this vegetarian pumpkin risotto is easy to make with just a few simple ingredients. Full of flavor, it's perfect for fall!
45 minutes
5 from 17 votes
Baked eggplant parmesan after coming out of the oven
Main Course

Baked Eggplant Parmesan

This Baked Eggplant Parmesan is a lighter twist on the classic Italian recipe. It's coated in panko breadcrumbs, then baked with layers of cheese & marinara
1 hour 35 minutes
5 from 147 votes
Baking dish of spinach lasagne roll ups garnished with fresh chopped basil and a spatual removing a piece.
Entree, Main Dish, Pastas

Spinach Lasagna Roll Ups

Spinach Lasagna Roll Ups are filled with the best ricotta spinach filling all rolled up and baked with marinara and melty cheese for a delicious family dinner and a new fun way to enjoy a classic.
57 minutes
5 from 64 votes
Cutting into one of the vegan served over spaghetti
Main Course

Vegan Meatballs

These vegan meatballs are a delicious meat-free alternative to one of your favorite comfort foods. Quick and easy to make and perfect for meal prep and freezer meals.
45 minutes
5 from 14 votes
Final ratatouille recipe in a bowl with parsley
Main Course

Ratatouille Recipe

This Ratatouille Recipe is vegan, gluten-free & Whole30 compliant. It's a classic end-of-summer French meal made super simply in one pot & loaded w/ veggies
30 minutes
5 from 18 votes

For more similar roundup of recipes, be sure to check out: Valentine’s Day Breakfast Ideas, Recipes with 5 Ingredients or less, 28 Easy No Bake Desserts, 18 Non Boring Salad Recipes, 25 Fresh Spring Recipes,

If you have tried any of these Date Night Dinner Ideas  or any other recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making the recipes. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories!

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