Isn’t It Romantic: Host A Valentine’s Day Party

Share the love this year with a Valentine’s Day party.

Sweetheart Cupcakes
Want to bake something special for your guests? Allrecipes Supporting Member, Celeste, has an idea for you! Try her recipe for Sweetheart Cupcakes (pictured below).

Celeste recommends icing cupcakes with Sturdy Whipped Cream Frosting, substituting almond extract for the vanilla.

Sweetheart Cupcakes

Photo by Dianne

Love’s Labors

  • Set up an area where guests can create valentines and decorate white paper lunch bags for stashing love notes. Supply paper lace doilies, cupcake liners, colored papers, glue, double-sided tape, pipe cleaners, buttons, yarn, ribbons, scissors, envelopes, pens, pencils, stamps, inks, etc. (Hint: white and silver ink, pencil, and crayon show up beautifully on red and dark pink paper.)
  • Bake heart-shaped cookies in advance and let everyone get creative with candies and icing pens.
  • Dip chocolate-covered strawberries. It’s easier than you might think!
  • Sing silly love songs. Rent karaoke equipment and lose your inhibitions.
  • Play a game where you stack conversation hearts and award a prize for the highest candy tower left standing. Or guess the number of chocolate kisses in a glass jar, with the winner taking the spoils.
  • For kids, give familiar playground games a Valentine’s Day spin. “Simon Says” becomes “Cupid Says.” “Red Light, Green Light” becomes “Loves Me, Loves Me Not.” “Musical Chairs” becomes “Musical Hearts.” An egg race becomes a valentine cupcake race with the confection perched on a spoon. (Hint: don’t play this one in a room with carpeting!)
Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Photo by Allrecipes Magazine

Sea of Love

  • A pretty bowl of punch makes for easy refreshments. Mix equal parts chilled cranberry juice, cherry juice, and lemon-lime soda with a small amount of crushed ice and call the pink concoction Cupid’s Love Potion. (If you wish, you could add a splash of vodka for adults.)
  • For kids, pile miniature savory sandwiches onto serving platters and let the little sweeties help themselves. Valentine pizzas might win some hearts, too. And save room for traditional Valentine’s Day treats like brownies, cupcakes, and cookies.
Easy Valentine Sandwich Cookies

Photo by raggedribbons

Foods of Love

  • Simple but special. For adults, start with beef tenderloin flavored with blue cheese and add some elegant but easy side dishes. Cook a whole loin for a crowd, or do individual filets if you’re hosting a small group.
  • On the side. Easy side dishes keep kitchen time to a minimum: try make-ahead mashed potatoes and baked asparagus.
  • Say It with Chocolate. How about a platter of homemade truffles or a no-bake, ultimate chocolate dessert?
Baked Asparagus with Balsamic Butter Sauce

Photo by Nichole Leighton

More Romance?

Tender Trappings

  • Cover your front door with red gift wrap, white paper lace doilies, and pink hearts.
  • Fill a basket with red, white, and pink carnations, each tied with ribbon. Have corsage pins on hand if guests choose to pin on flowers as they arrive.
  • Write “Be Mine” on the bathroom mirror using inexpensive red lipstick. (It will come off with glass cleaner–really!)
  • Drape a white or red tablecloth on the dining room table and sprinkle liberally with paper hearts, conversation heart candies, and wrapped chocolates.
  • Be sure to include lots of candlelight, romantic tunes, and a little room for dancing.
  • For take-home party favors, fill red glass votive candle holders with candies. Set each in the middle of a square of tissue paper, twist to close, and tie at the twist with ribbon.

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