Ahhh new relationships. There’s always something so tingle-inducing about all of those little “firsts” that come with dating the right guy or girl in those early stages, isn’t there? First time you hold hands. The first kiss. The first date, in which you talk for hours on end. The first time you bring him or her home for a nice cozy night in with a homemade dinner…
The only problem with that last one is that most of the time, we’re so intent on making the perfect dinner, we don’t realize how much time we actually spend in the kitchen cooking. That means not so much time for enjoying each other’s… ahem, company.
Not to worry though, because we’ve got your back with these 17 delicious but foolproof recipes. They aren’t only sure to impress, but they’re also either easily prepared in advance or require minimal cooking time, giving you more time to get your flirt on.
17 recipes to make on that first home date
Surf 'n' Turf for TwoNothing screams romance like steak and seafood. Also, nothing is easier to cook. Invest in some quality ingredients and you've got a fancy ass dinner in under 15 minutes.
GET THE RECIPEIowa Girl Eats
Lobster Mac and CheeseWho doesn't love Mac and Cheese? Make it extra fancy by adding some chunks of lobster. Make it in advance and then heat it up the night of for extra flavour and ease.
GET THE RECIPESmells Like Home
Honey Goat Cheese PizzaSure, pizza may seem like a cheat because it's almost too easy, but when you fancy it up with cool ingredients, it's always a smash. Especially since you can feed it to each other. Pair it with a salad, and you're good to go.
GET THE RECIPEThis Week for Dinner
Beef Ragu with PolentaHave a slow cooker? Use it to make the most tender beef of your life. Plus, once your date gets there, all you'll need to do is whip up the polenta (a.k.a. corn meal) and serve.
GET THE RECIPEPinch of Yum
Goat Cheese Stuffed ChickenMost of us like chicken, but this is like chicken on steroids. The great news is you can stuff it ahead of time, so all you'll need to do the night of is pop it in the oven.
GET THE RECIPEB. Britnell
Spaghetti CarboneraThis is one of the simplest and quickest pastas in existence to pull off, but it's also totally fancy. Especially when you crack that fresh egg on top.
GET THE RECIPEDamn Delicious
Teriyaki SalmonSalmon may be the most universally liked fish, but it's also one of the quickest-cooking fish out there. Just 15 minutes with this recipe and you're done!
GET THE RECIPENatasha's Kitchen
Thai Baked ChickenIf you're feeling a little exotic, this no-muss, no-fuss chicken dish is the perfect thing to whip up and impress your honey.
GET THE RECIPEFlavour and Savour
Crab CakesThese puppies seem super fancy, but they're actually easy as heck to make. Whip them up in advance, then cook them and pair with a salad once your date arrives.
GET THE RECIPEHost the Toast
One-Pot Lemon Chicken PastaWho has time to watch a bunch of ingredients when you're flirting up a storm? Throw everything into one pot with this recipe, set a timer and then you're good to go.
GET THE RECIPESpoonful of Flavor
Honey Garlic ShrimpWe highly recommend this shrimp recipe thanks to its simplicity and taste. Although, you may want to remove the tails and veins beforehand. No one wants to dissect shrimp with their hands during the first date night in.
GET THE RECIPESally's Baking Addiction
Brown Sugar, Garlic PorkThe key to great pork? Marinade, marinade, marinade. We highly recommend this one.
GET THE RECIPEDinner Then Dessert
Seared Steak with Red Wine Balsamic ReductionThe key to a good steak? A long ass marinade. After that, all you need to do is grill!
GET THE RECIPEThe Cookie Rookie
Creamy White Chicken Caprese LasagnaLooking for a riff on the traditional lasagna? This is one of our faves. Plus you can assemble everything in advance, and just throw it in the oven when you're ready to go.
GET THE RECIPEThe Cookie Rookie
Wild Mushroom RisottoYes -- risotto needs to be babysat... a little. But with a bottle of wine, slowly stirring this dish for 20 minutes or so as it simmers can actually be quite romantic...
GET THE RECIPESteph in Thyme
A Charcuterie BoardWant to stay out of the kitchen all together? Just throw a bunch of fancy deli meats and cheeses on a board, then garnish with olives, grapes, bread sticks and some spreads. It's fancy AF, and the easiest thing you'll make all day.
GET THE RECIPEWhat's Gaby Cooking
Beer and Honey Barbecue Chicken SkewersOkay so this one is a little more summer than winter, but if you just marinade the skewers, you can bring them outside for a little barbecue and sangria before bringing the party back inside later.
GET THE RECIPEJo Cooks