Texas Living

Have a Very Texan Valentine’s Day Dinner

By Abi Grise Morgan 2.7.22

It’s no secret that the way to a Texan’s heart is through their stomach. This Valentine’s Day, spend a romantic evening in with your sweetie enjoying a homemade, Texas-themed date.

From appealing appetizers to devilishly decadent desserts, this Texas Valentine’s Day dinner lineup is most certainly swoonworthy.

Texas Valentine’s Day Apps
Photo by Natalie Goff

First Course: ‘Awww’-Inspiring Appetizers

Texans don’t take appetizers lightly. Sure, we make great salads and soups, but where we really shine are filling finger foods. Try:

  • Armadillo eggs: They’re essentially a jalapeño popper stuffed with cream cheese, pork sausage, and bacon. What’s not to love?
  • Fried green tomatoes: It never hurts to go with a classic. This famous Southern favorite can be elevated by layering with burrata or salsa verde.
Texas Valentine’s Day Entrees
Photo by Elizabeth Lavin; Food Styling by Lisa Martel-Mohon; Prop Styling by Jamie Laubhan-Oliver

Second Course: Entrees to Crush On

A good old-fashioned barbecue is a labor of love — and an all-out option to woo your sweetheart. Dress your barbecue to impress:

  • Barbecue rubs: Don’t risk disaster — ensure that your flavors are on point with help from legendary Texas pitmasters.
  • Barbecue sauces: We know — you should never talk at the dinner table about politics, religion, or whether barbecue should have sauce or not. But if you and your date are soul mates, then you’ll probably agree on the last one, right?

If you don’t want to show up to dinner in a cloud of meat smoke, trade in the barbecue for a romantic, old-fashioned roast. Look ahead to brighter days with these “eve of spring” recipes:

  • Spring roast: It looks complicated, but this recipe only calls for four ingredients: lamb, chili flakes, garlic, and anchovies. (Keep a breath mint handy.)
  • In-season sides: The hardest part is deciding which veggies to roast on the side. Broccoli, collard greens, kale, and much more are all in season in February. Can’t settle on just one? Mix it up! Lightly coat in olive oil, toss together on a pan, and roast in the oven to your heart’s desire.

Speaking of in-season: Fresh mushrooms are the ultimate wintry dish. Dare to go off theme and make your house smell like a wooded, earthy wonderland with this mushroom risotto recipe.

Texas Valentine’s Day Dessert
Photo by Imani Chet Lytle

Third Course: Tempting Desserts

End your romantic dinner on a sweet note with the perfect dessert. Pay your respects to tradition with the ultimate classics:

  • Not your grandma’s pecan pie: Your love will go nuts over an unconventional, but still perfectly gooey, pecan pie made with real Texas pecans. Make your own crust or buy one premade (we won’t tell!).
  • Texas sheet cake: It’s beloved for a reason. Just like your date.

Or, be berry, berry sweet and make the most of the first inklings of fresh strawberries. Or try a blackberry icebox cake or a custardy blueberry pie.

Texas Valentine’s Day Drinks
Photo by Imani Chet Lytle

Fourth Course: Toast to the Future

Say cheers with the true taste of Texas — a homemade prickly pear syrup that can sweeten up any drink and dress up even a club soda. Or wrap up your evening with homemade hot beverages, which pair well with flirty after-dinner conversation.

Popping the big question this Valentine’s Day? Here’s everything you need to know about planning a truly Texan wedding.

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