Skip to main content

5 Date Night Dinners Easy Enough for Weeknights

These date-night dinners are the real deal. They're complete meals, just right for when you're on a mission to impress but don't have all the time in the world to design a menu. The common denominator among all of these diverse, delicious recipes is ease of preparation -- so they're perfect for Valentine's Day, anniversaries, or any dinner when you want to show you care! For each meal, we've paired a simple, savory main dish with its perfect side dish -- and thrown in the perfect wine pairing to keep things exciting. The rest is up to you!

1. Pork Tenderloin with Dijon

Pork tenderloin is coated with Dijon mustard, then roasted and served with a simple cream, Marsala wine, and mustard sauce. The delicious sauce is also tasty spooned over grilled or broiled steak and baked chicken breasts. BettysMommy confirms this recipe's date night bona fides: "My husband made this for me when we were dating, and now we make it for every special occasion we have. Absolute favorite meal EVER!" For the side, we've matched it with a super-simple Steamed Broccoli.

Pair this impressive meal with a Pinot Noir (Burgundy) or Chardonnay if you prefer white.

Pork Tenderloin with Dijon

Photo by Allrecipes 

2. Beef Tenderloin with Ginger-Shiitake Brown Butter

This steak dish delivers a little international intrigue, combining Asia-inspired ingredients with simple French techniques to create 5-star results. KarenB says, "I made this for Valentine's day. The flavor was outstanding, and it was very simple to prepare." We've paired the beef fillets with easy Roast Potatoes.

Match it up with a Merlot from Washington, California, or France.

Beef Tenderloin

Photo by Allrecipes

3. Smoked Salmon Alfredo

Smoked salmon combines with sauteed onions, is finished with cream, and topped with diced fresh tomatoes and parsley. "This is absolutely the best," says Louise. "Tastes like a 5 star restaurant dish. And it is so easy!" Serve it over fettuccine, linguine, or penne pasta. We've paired it a Simple Green Salad and a dry, not sweet, Riesling.

Smoked Salmon Alfredo

Photo by Allrecipes

4. Viva Madrid Spanish Chicken

Here's a Spanish-inspired meal that's full of flavor, with dates, bacon, garlic, and spices. Mr & Mrs Smith say, "¡Viva Madrid! This chicken is fantastic! A great pick for a romantic dinner. A very elegant and classy meal for those who like the meat & fruit combo." As many reviewers suggested, we paired it with Simple Spanish Rice.

Match this meal with a red Rioja or a Tempranillo blend from Ribera del Duero or Alto Douro.

Viva Madrid Spanish Chicken

Photo by Allrecipes

5. Tarragon Lover's Scallops

Plump sea scallops are seared to a beautiful golden brown and served with a luscious brown butter and fresh tarragon sauce. ShyKook says, "I made this dish for my first! ever! dinner party, and it was wonderful. Super simple, but delicious and worthy of company. I was very nervous about the evening, but this recipe gave me no reason to worry." We paired it up with a Classic Rice Pilaf.

Enjoy these savory scallops with your favorite Chardonnay.

Tarragon Lover's Scallops

Photo by Allrecipes


Check out the collection of Cooking-for-Two Recipes.


Related:

Carl Hanson

About Carl Hanson

Carl will eat that. Share with him @CarlNo9 on Twitter.