Valentine’s Day food: As the COVID-19 pandemic drags on, it’s always nice to find a few easy ways to make mundane household stuff a little more exciting. Here are six super-easy ways to approach meals and dessert for Valentine’s Day (Sunday, Feb. 14) this year. And the best part is that little ones can help with most of these preparations, too.
1. Super-easy chocolate-covered strawberries
Grab a pint of strawberries and wash and dry them. Grab a quarter cup of chocolate chips and put the chips in the microwave for one minute, or until melted. Stir the chocolate and, using a spoon, drip it onto each strawberry, one at a time. Put the coated strawberries on a plate and into the fridge for at least 30 minutes. (If more chocolate is needed, just heat up another quarter cup of chips and repeat.)
What you need: A pint of strawberries. A bag of chocolate chips. A microwave. A refrigerator. (No double boiler needed!)
2. Heart-shape pancakes
As you make pancakes, pour the batter into a heat-safe, heart-shape cookie cutter on the pan.
What you need: Pancake batter, a heart-shape cookie cutter, patience.
3. Heart-shape sandwiches
Peanut or sunflower butter and jelly work great for this one, as do grilled cheese sandwiches.
What you need: A sandwich and a heart-shape cookie cutter will quickly make this into Valentine’s Day food. If you have a kid who hates crusts, you might already be using a cookie cutter device each day, anyway.
4. Heart-shape pasta
You can add tomato sauce for some extra Valentine’s Day coloring, or serve it plain with parmesan for kids with plainer palates. Either way, it’s far more exciting than penne or farfalle AGAIN.
What you need: Heart-shape pasta and tomato sauce and/or parmesan.
5. Apple slice hearts
Cut an apple into two wedges and place them together to make your own hearts. For extra holiday flair, add some caramel dipping sauce or even — ooh! — melted chocolate.
What you need: Apples. A knife. Maybe some caramel sauce (or chocolate sauce or melted chocolate chips).
6. St. Valentine’s hot cocoa
Make a cup of hot chocolate. Top it with some whipped cream or mini marshmallows and a dash of tiny cinnamon hearts. It will make for a beautiful, festive treat with minimal effort, too. But make sure your kid actually likes cinnamon hearts. (Many kids find them just too hot.)
What you need: Milk or water, a hot chocolate packet, whipped cream or mini marshmallows, tiny cinnamon hearts.