35-Minute, Three-Course Dinner For Your Valentine
Valentine’s Day falls on Friday this week, which means I’m likely going to be ready to relax after a full week of work instead of spending 2 hours in the kitchen cooking a romantic dinner. I doubt my husband wants to either. The other option is an overpriced pre-fixe dinner out in a crowded restaurant– a recipe for disappointment. I decided to look through my favorite recipes and put together an easy dinner that I can prep ahead in just a few minutes.
Starting with a crunchy, sweet and crisp chopped salad, followed by creamy, cheesy cacio e pepe, and ending with a refreshing and delicious mango sorbet, this meal is full of indulgent flavor.
Meal Prep Valentine’s Dinner
I learned a long time ago that meal prep can be romantic. Yes, I said it. Heck, cooking is romantic. But mostly when it’s stress-free and feels more like date than a chore that leaves you exhausted. Want to impress your significant other? Let them see you in the kitchen, throwing fresh, delicious ingredients together like a pro.
Move over Victoria. Meal prep is the real secret to a great Valentine’s Day. (That was supposed to make you laugh!)
Easy 3-Course Dinner Prep Plan & Recipes
So, here is the plan and the three recipes that’ll make their hearts melt! It’s Wednesday, so I’m making my sorbet tonight!
Wednesday: Blend up your dessert Mango Sorbet and freeze. (5 minutes)
Thursday: Chop ingredients for Vegan Chopped Salad. (10 minutes)
Friday: Prepare Cacio e Pepe. Make salad dressing and mix with chopped ingredients. (20 minutes)
If you make these recipes for your Valentine, we’d love to see them on Instagram! Just use the hashtag #THEFRESH20 so we can see what’s cooking in your kitchen.Print
Hearty vegan chopped salad of super food vegetables, crunchy sunflower seeds and sweet raisins, topped with ginger avocado vinaigrette.
- 1 head cauliflower, finely chopped (use food processor for best results)
- 1/2 head of red cabbage, finely chopped (use food processor for best results)
- 1 bunch kale, finely chopped to yield about 2 cups
- 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
- 1 bunch fresh cilantro or parsley, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup raisins, chopped
- 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
- 1 avocado, mashed
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 Tablespoon fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- 1 Tablespoon grated ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- black pepper to taste
- Chop cauliflower, cabbage, carrots and onion in food processor or finely by hand.
- In a large serving bowl, combine all salad ingredients.
- Whisk all the dressing ingredients until well blended.
- Stir dressing into salad and chill until serving.
- Serving Size: 4
Tender pasta in a creamy, cheesy and peppery sauce.
- 1 pound bucatini
- 1–½ cups pecorino cheese
- ½ cup grated parmesan reggiano
- 2 teaspoons black pepper
- Reserved water from pasta boiling
- Boil pasta in water that is salty like the sea.
- Cook until just before al dente (according to package), then use tongs to quickly transfer it to the bowl, reserving a cup or so of the cooking water.
- Add half cup of cooking water to pasta and ¼ of cheese.
- Flip pasta around til cheese is combined.
- Add another quarter of cheese and repeat.
- If needed, add more reserve cooking water.
- Keep adding cheese and flipping to coat. The sauce will build to a creamy texture and cling to the pasta. It should not be watery.
Aromatic, refreshing no added sugar mango sorbet
- 3/4 cup fresh orange juice
- 1/4 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/3 cup firmly packed pitted dates
- 4 cups frozen mango
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
- Blast on high for 60 seconds
- Serve immediately in small bowls, or freeze until ready to use.