The fastest way to your SO’s heart is through the belly. So we recommend spending quality time together in the kitchen—chopping vegetables, tossing greens, marinating meat, stirring soup, chatting about the day, flirting a little, drinking wine. After all, there’s something inherently intimate about preparing a meal together and then enjoying the fruits of your labor. And, let’s be honest, making reservations and eating out can be such a hassle on Valentine’s Day. We’ve put together a few recipes from some of our favorite restaurants in Texas that are sure to set the mood. And for those who are not so culinary-inclined—or would rather have someone else preparing the food—we have a list of delectable desserts to keep the love going after dinner.

You can start off with something warm and cozy . . .

Baked Herbed Goat Cheese
Roasted Acorn Squash Soup
Spiced Coconut Butternut Squash Soup

Or go festive with color . . .

Grilled Caprese Salad
Beet and Goat Cheese Salad
Herb Salad With Red Wine Vinaigrette

And then move on to one of these entrée options . . .

Filet Mignon
Braised Lamb Shanks
Open-Faced Ravioli and Balsamic Roasted Chicken With Black Olive–Tomato Butter
Baked Red Snapper
Salmon With Saffron Potatoes
Prosciutto-Wrapped Halibut With Saffron Cream and Asparagus
Pumpkin Gnocchi With Apple Cider Brown Butter

And add a side . . .

Mashed Maple-Cascabel Sweet Potatoes
Creamed Corn With Crispy Bread Crumb Topping

Ready for dessert?

Skip the boxed chocolates this year and whip up one of these delicious desserts together with your honey—and go ahead and lick your fingers.

Baked Chocolate-and-Hazelnut Mousse
Chocolate Cherry Croissant Bread Pudding
Crème Brûléee
Fresh Peppermint Fudge Brownies
Old-Fashioned Strawberry Shortcake
Raspberry-White Chocolate Bread Pudding