Valentine’s Dinner for 2 under $20 and made in under 20 minutes! Ribeye steaks with a homemade spice rub, Pasta topped with a portabello marsala cream sauce, green beans on the side and cheesecake for dessert!
When the budget is tight, but you need a date night what do we do?? One of our favorite things to do for a special occasion is to go to Martins and get really nice steaks from their meat counter. This makes for a cheap and easy date night in.
If you have kids and no babysitter don’t worry! We feed our kids something easy like pizza and then send them upstairs with our laptop and netflix. We only let them do this about once a month so that it stays special!
Here is what was on the menu for a past Valentine’s dinner:
Ribeye steaks with a homemade spice rub, Pasta topped with a portabello marsala cream sauce, and green beans on the side. We also bought a cheesecake for dessert!
I was able to spend less than $20 making dinner, and it only took about 20 minutes! Two adults can not have had a dinner this nice in a restaurant for this cheap, and I know the wait time would be longer than 20 minutes! I also personally think the steaks we make are much tastier than many you get in a restaurant, and I know this meal overall is much healthier.
Here’s how you can make it:
- Preheat oven to BROIL
- Rub steak with a spice blend. I used my own pork rub mix which has paprika, brown sugar, onion powder, garlic salt, cumin and pepper.
- Place steaks on broiling pan and broil (with door shut) about 4 minutes. Take them out, flip them, and rub the other side of the steak with more spice mix. Place back in the oven for another 4 minutes.
- We like our steak medium rare, so cook a little longer if you want. You can also have Martin’s marinate your steaks!
Portabello Marsala Cream Sauce:
(so much easier than it sounds!)
- Slice 1/2 an onion into very thin slices. Cut portabello mushrooms into slices until you have about 2 handfuls of mushroom pieces.
- Place onions and mushrooms into a skillet with a few drizzles of olive oil. Cook until mushrooms just start to get soft (maybe 1 minute) on med-high heat
- Pour marsala wine into skillet until the bottom is coated with about a centimeter of wine. Cook until it is almost gone.
- Put 2 tablespoons of tomato paste, 1/4 cup water, and 1/4 cup of cream (or milk or 1/2 and 1/2) into skillet. Mix well.
- Bring to a bubble then reduce heat. Add more wine, or more tomato paste to either thin or thicken sauce. You may want to add salt and pepper too.
Steak: about 2 lbs for $14.22
Mushrooms: $2.99 and I used half so $1.50
Tomato Paste: $0.75 and I used about $0.10 worth
Green Beans: $0.69
Cheesecake: $3.99 (I had no idea they were that cheap…this could be bad!) and we’ll eat about $1.50 worth
I already had the wine, noodles, and onion, but I’ll add $1.00 for those
Total: $17.51!!! And we have enough leftover for 2 lunches (or the kids)
Another frugal option: Go ahead and splurge on some of those deli section side dishes! You will STILL come out cheaper than going to a restaurant.