Cara-melt Hearts

Cara-melt Hearts with These Stay-at-Home Valentine’s Day Ideas

McCrea's Candies Valentines Day gift

It’s always nice to go out for Valentine’s Day, but the holiday doesn’t require sitters, fancy dinners, Ubers or new outfits to be memorable.  In fact, one sleeve of caramel is all you need for an unforgettable night at home. 

Here are some unique Valentine’s Day ideas for couples who want to skip the lines, avoid the crowds and spend a night solely in the company of each other.  You can easily say “I Lava You” to your significant other with these fun stay-at-home activities incorporating McCrea’s Candies caramel.


Rev Up 

Get the evening started by making a variety of delicious appetizers together.  Pour a glass of champagne and get cooking.  We have a list of easy-to-make hors d'oeuvres featuring six of our fifteen flavors of caramel, several of which contain natural aphrodisiacs:

Avocado Maki With Ginger Fusion Caramel Drizzle

This delicious starter contains not one, but two aphrodisiacs:  Ginger and Avocado.

Ginger is known to wake the body up and increase the heart rate. Its active ingredient acts as a light natural stimulant while at the same time promoting relaxation and overall well-being. Avocado has been known to boost vitality due to its high levels of vitamin E, which helps maintain youthful vigor and energy levels.


Two trays of store-bought Avocado Maki sushi

1 tbsp. half n half

4 McCrea’s Candies’ Ginger fusion Caramels (approximate)


Place Maki on serving platter.  Put half and half and caramel in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 10 second intervals, whisking in between, until smooth sauce is created. If sauce is too thin, add more caramels. If too thick, add more half and half in ½ tsp intervals. Serve immediately by drizzling over the Avocado Maki.

Makes: 8-16 depending on size amount of purchased sushi; double sauce recipe as needed.

Black Mission Figs Stuffed with Tapped Maple Caramel

Figs are rich in amino acids which are known to increase stamina, as well as iron and potassium. Their reputation as a romance food permeates through history, and they’ve been written about by poets and literature for centuries. It’s even said that figs may have been the fruit that caused original sin in the Garden of Eden, rather than apples!


12 black mission figs

3 McCrea’s Candies Tapped Maple Caramels


Remove tip of fig. Slice a cross lengthwise down the fig without cutting all the way through to the bottom. Pull back the 4 pieces to reveal the interior of fig. Cut each maple caramel into quarters. Roll each section into a ball and place in the center of each fig.

Makes: 12

And if you just want to pop a caramel or two while you’re prepping dinner, try McCrea’s Classic Vanilla.  Vanilla has been long regarded as a food of passion. It is said to increase muscular energy, improve circulation, stimulate arousal, decrease stress and have a euphoric effect on the brain. It also helps create a feeling of comfort and peace, which encourages a feeling of safety and intimacy.


Drink Up 

Wine and caramel are two of our favorite things.  They are so great on their own, why not pair these iconic Valentine’s Day treats together? After extensive research (hiccup), we’ve created the ultimate wine and caramel pairings list.  Try one of the pairings below or have some fun by creating your own favorite combinations, using blindfolds or not (that part is up to you!) ….

Classic Vanilla: Pair with a lightly oaked Chardonnay or semi-sweet sparkling wine. Also pairs nicely with a lighter Pinot Noir.

Black Lava Sea Salt: Serve with a dry sparkling sweet sherry. The bubbles play off the pops of salt. Our personal favorite pairing is with a dry, sparkling Rosé.

Deep Chocolate: Pairs beautifully with a tawny port or a Cabernet with softer tannins.

Cape Cod Sea Salt: Try this with a Sauvignon Blanc or a Sancerre or any white with a little bit of minerality to it.

Rosemary Truffle Sea Salt: Fantastic with a Sangiovese or any Italian red; try with a shmear of gorgonzola dolce on top for fun.

Ginger Fusion: Match this zingy flavor with a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling or Moscato. The apple and tree fruit notes in these wines tend to pair nicely with the slightly spicy yet sweet, warm, and somewhat woody flavor of fresh ginger.

Dark Roasted Mocha: Enjoy with a Cava or Madeira. These smooth, creamy and slightly sweet wines bring out the bold mocha flavor.

Wines not your thing?  We’ve got you covered here too:

Single Malt Scotch: Freeze our scotch caramels and use them as an ice cube or cold stone in your glass.  Enhance the flavor without watering it down.

Tapped Maple: We love this with a rich, warm craft bourbon.

We’ve also collected a variety of delicious caramel-inspired drink recipes.  Dazzle your darling with fun, festive and easy-to-make caramel concoctions, including caramel-infused, caramel-rimmed and caramel-garnished cocktails like our Coconut Caramel Mule which contains our Ginger Fusion and Classic Vanilla caramels, natural aphrodisiacs (see above):

Coconut Caramel Mule

This luscious libation calls for coconut rum infused with McCrea's Candies Ginger Fusion and Classic Vanilla caramels and mixed with pineapple juice and ginger beer for the most delicious Coconut Caramel Mule, a fun take on a Moscow Mule.


1 ½ oz caramel-infused Coconut Rum

½ oz. pineapple juice

3 oz. ginger beer



Infuse the rum with 14 pieces of McCrea's Candies Ginger Fusion Caramel and 6 pieces of McCrea's Candies Classic Vanilla Caramel. Build all ingredients in a copper mug and stir. Garnish with a lime wheel and McCrea’s Candies Ginger Fusion Caramel.


Heat Up

Set up an indoor picnic with your favorite foods.  Use your coffee table and floor cushions or spread your coziest blanket in front of the fire. Lanterns or candles can add a romantic touch.  Serve up your favorite foods or turn your indoor feast into a tasting experience for two with McCrea’s Candies Flavor Family caramel.

If the way to a person’s heart is through the stomach, then McCrea’s Flavor Family might just be Cupid! Share mouthwatering sweet, savory, and spirited caramels with your Valentine’s Day sweetie. Our Flavor Family contains two pieces each of nine flavors of slow-cooked, handcrafted caramel. 

Perfect for a casual at-home Valentine’s date night, couples can enjoy Cape Cod Sea Salt, Rosemary Truffle Sea Salt, Ginger, Single Malt Scotch, Mocha, Vanilla, Maple, and, of course, Chocolate caramel. 

And, after you share, you can beg, barter or fight over the extra piece of Black Lava Sea Salt that we include in each sleeve. Just be sure to kiss and make up once the dust settles.


Cozy Up

Want a simple evening of “Netflix and Chill?”  Don’t just make it a typical TV night—add something special and sentimental to show you care. Create a lineup of your honey's favorite TV show episodes or re-watch that movie you watched on your fourth date. Alternatively, check out this list of the streaming service’s most romantic movies.  Then snuggle up on the sofa with your sweetie and a favorite treat like cheddar popcorn mixed with caramel pieces (our take on the popular cheddar/caramel popcorn combo; just cut up a few pieces of your favorite caramel – or a mix of flavors – add, eat and enjoy).

If a movie is not part of the evening’s program, cozy up in front of a fire.  Toast up some s’mores topped with a McCrea’s caramel for an added punch of flavor or whip up this Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate.  Rim your favorite mug with caramel and then add mini chocolate chips or another of your favorite sweet treats. Melt-in-your mouth goodness.


Finish Up

How you actually end the night is completely up to you, however, our caramel and cheese dessert board is certainly a penultimate and fitting run-up to evening’s end.  A simple dessert cheese plate makes for an easy and deliciously elegant final course.  And when you’re really trying to wow, a dessert platter pairing cheeses and caramels can be an easy-to-prepare yet mouthwatering end to a delightful Valentine’s night in.  We show you how to create the perfect platter here.

Staying in can fill your night with romance in unexpected ways. These caramelized Valentine’s Day ideas are designed to help you fashion an evening that’s personal and unique by offering delicious opportunities to express your love and create intimacy in the comfort of your own home.  We hope they cara-melt your loved one’s heart.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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