This Valentine’s Day we’ll be recreating our favourite date night at home. And thanks to these supermarkets, cooking up a delicious 3-course meal couldn't be easier - or cheaper!
This year, Valentine’s Day falls on a Sunday, meaning you have the whole weekend to put together something really special to show your beloved just how much they mean to you. But for those of us who are struggling to keep up with what day it is in lockdown let alone what date - chances are it's only just dawned on you that Valentine's Day is just around the corner. If this were to happen in any other year, you'd be frantically ringing restaurants trying to nab a last-minute reservation. But the one silver lining of a nationwide lockdown and forgetting about Valentine's Day is that celebrations must take place at home.
From ordering an at-home meal kit from a small independent business (see more on that, here) or snuggling up on the couch with a Valentine's Day inspired cocktail in hand, there's plenty you can do to make this February 14 extra special. However, each of the above date night ideas requires planning and ordering before February 11...oops. But don't fret - there is one way you can salvage Valentine's Day and make your other half think you've been planning this for months: the supermarket.
Some of our favourite supermarkets have stepped up to save last-minute planners and make the whole occasion that little bit easier, offering delicious “dine in for two” menus. You can expect everything from steak and chips to a full three-course affair with a bottle of wine – at Aldi you can even opt for fizz – all at a more purse-friendly price than ordering a takeaway. With everything pre-prepared, neither you nor your valentine will have to take on any arduous cooking responsibilities, making the celebrations just that little bit easier. Whether it’s a date night with your partner, Galentine’s celebration, or just enjoying a nice dinner with your household, these are the meal deals you need on your radar.
Availability: 4 - 17 February 2021, online and in-store
What’s included: A dine-in deal that is sure to score highly on convenience, quality and value. You can choose from a selection of gorgeous dishes from SuperValu's Signature Tastes range: 1 Meal + 2 Sides + 1 Dessert for a mere €10. Dishes include a lamb tagine with jasmine rice, fish or cottage pie, and butter chicken with potato gratin with desserts such as chocolate, coffee or carrot cake on offer too.
Then top it all off with a bottle of Condado de Oriza at only €10 or Vina De Albali Rueda Verdejo at €9. Or to really make the night special, why not treat yourself to a bottle of bubbles with Segura Viudas Brut Reserva Heredad available at only €20. See SuperValu.ie for more information.
Price: multiple offers starting at just €4
Availability: 11 - 14 February, available in-store
What’s included: If starters aren't really your thing - or desserts for that matter, Dunnes Stores have some terrific deals on tasty main courses and sumptuous sides. For the main course, choose from their Simply Better range of Wild Atlantic Cod Loins (2 pack now just €5), Irish Corn Fed Chicken Breast Fillets wrapped in Prosciutto Di Parma with Asparagus Spears and Irish Butter (2 Pack now €6.99) or their award-winning 28 Day Matured Irish Angus Striploin Steaks (2 Pack now €8.99). To go alongside these dishes, you can choose from their Simply Better range of vegetables (now €4 each). But if it's something sweet you're after, Dunnes Stores has you covered there too with their wide variety of Simply Better desserts all at €4 each. Think Handmade Dark Chocolate Tarts, Irish Strawberries and White Chocolate Panna Cotta or Sticky Toffee Pudding. What's more, Dunnes Stores also has 25% off all Champagne & Sparkling Wines – valid from Thursday 11 until Sunday 14 February. See dunnesstores.com for more information.
Availability: February 11 - while stocks last. Available in-store.
What’s included: This isn't just any meal deal… The OG founders of the “dine in for €12" craze, it should come as no surprise that the popular M&S Valentine’s Day offer is back. This year M&S has upped its game and is offering you a bottle of rosé prosecco instead of wine. There's also an entirely vegan menu on offer too. Starters include everything from a new salmon sharing platter to gastropub duck croquettes while for mains there is a lot to choose from, be it love linguine for two (pictured) with meatballs or a no-beef creamy peppercorn pie option from their vegan Plant Kitchen range. On the side, there’s triple cooked chips or truffled cauliflower cheese, which immediately took our eye. But, the goodness doesn’t stop there. For dessert, there’s tarte au citron, vegan churros with chocolate sauce and a profiterole stack. See marksandspencer.com for more information.
Price: €8 - €13.95
Availability: 11 February - Sunday 14, available in-store
What’s included: Sometimes an unpretentious, but totally delicious and easy dinner consisting of pizza, wedges and ice-cream is one of the most comfortable, romantic meals you can eat with a partner (or alone). Cue Aldi. The budget-friendly supermarket has announced its Valentine’s Day meal deals, and it’s doing things a little differently to other retailers, with starters, mains, sides and desserts all being sold separately. The cheapest set, coined “Value Meal for 2”, comes in at just €7.91. Opt for this and you’ll get Champion potato wedges (74c), Specially Selected coleslaw (99c), Specially Selectedpepperoni and spicy chorizo pizza (€3.99) and Crème de la Crème Dessert Ice Cream (€2.19) which when added together comes to a mere €7.91. Alternatively, dine on a starter of Skellig Bay Prawn Cocktail (€2.29), a main course of Specially Selected Duck Breast Fillets (Choose from Plain, Aromatic or Lemon Pepper €5.99) with Tasty Potato Gratin (€1.79) and dessert of Specially Selected Sicilian Lemon Tart (€3.43) which all comes together for an unmissable €13.50. Not stopping there, there's a third meal deal on offer which consists of Marinated Chickenn Wings (€2.49), Tasty Creamy Colcannon Mash (€1.79), Specially Selected Irish Pork Fillet (€6.99) and a Specially Selected Sticky Toffee Pudding (€2.69) to finish which comes together for less than €15. And not forgetting the vegetarians and vegans, Aldi has a Vegan/Vegetarian Meal for 2 for €8.76 which consists of The Deli Olives and Antipasti (€1.49), Beetroot Veggie Burgers (€1.79), Specially Selected Sweet Potato Fries (€2.99) and Plant Menu Vegan Ice Cream (€2.49) to finish. Plus, you can pick up a bottle of Costellore prosecco frizzante for just €6! See aldi.ie for more information.
Availability: February 8 - February 14, available online and in-store
What’s included: Tesco has a €15 meal deal made up of treats selected from its Tesco Finest range. Think steak, beef Bourguignon as well as rich chocolate brownies. Included in the price is one starter, main, side, vegetable dish, pudding as well as a drink. As well as lots for meat-eaters, there are generous choices for vegans, including Wicked Kitchen Wicked Wellington for a main, and a Wicked Kitchen chocolate brownie heart for dessert. See tesco.ie for more information.
Availability: From Wednesday, February 10 - while stocks last, available online and in-store
What’s included: From their kitchen to yours, AVOCA has launched a mouth-watering three-course Dine-In menu for two. Complete with a choice of three starters, three main courses (including a vegetarian option), two side dishes and two desserts. Choose from a nourishing Borscht & Confit Duck Consommé, fresh Fishcakes with Tartare Sauce or a full-flavoured Slow Roasted Tomato & Basil Soup to start. Followed by a choice of Organic Dry-aged Fillet Steaks (€3.00 supplement), a baked Haddock & Bombay Potatoes dish or vegetarians can opt for the Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni as their main course. The Valentine’s Dine-In menu is available in AVOCA Food Market’s now, customers can also contact their local AVOCA store to order the Dine-In menu for collection and delivery. Delivery is available within a 20km radius of select AVOCA stores including Kilmacanoge, Ballsbridge, Monkstown and Malahide. A fee of €5 (0-10km) & €10 (10-20km) applies. See avoca.com for more information.
READ MORE: What we're cooking this week - Valentine's Day edition