Searching for a sweet meal deal for your COVID Valentine or a heart-shaped pizza?
This year, many couples will celebrate Valentine’s Day differently than past years amid the coronavirus pandemic. Only 24% are planning on an evening out and 46% are avoiding in-person gatherings, according to the National Retail Federation’s annual survey.
But the big date night isn’t canceled. Two in five say they will have a special meal or celebration at home, the survey found.
Fancy dining and casual restaurants alike are offering special menus and deals for dining in and take out. Plus, you can eat your heart out with heart-shaped treats and meals.
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And with Valentine’s Day falling on a Sunday, many specials will be available all weekend. Saturday also is Galentine’s Day, a day created in 2010 by Amy Poehler’s character Leslie Knope on the TV show “Parks and Recreation.”
But what started as a tradition created on the NBC comedy has taken on a life of its own, spawning events around the world.
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In the “Parks and Recreation” episode, Knope celebrates her female friendships with a brunch featuring mimosas, waffles and super-personal gifts for her ladies.
“Every Feb. 13, my lady friends and I leave our husbands and our boyfriends at home, and we just come and kick it, breakfast-style,” Knope said on the show. “Ladies celebrating ladies. It’s like Lilith Fair, minus the angst. Plus frittatas.”
Galentine’s, Valentine’s Day weekend
The following deals are available Saturday and Sunday unless otherwise noted at participating locations. Some require an app and most are while supplies last. Offers can vary by franchise, so check with your closest location before heading out.
Auntie Anne’s: From Friday through Sunday, Pretzel Perks app users can save $5 on a bucket of Original Pretzel Nuggets, Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Nuggets or Mini Pretzel Dogs, available for delivery or pick up.
Bertucci’s: The chain has a $40 Dinner for Two Valentine’s Day package Friday through Sunday, available for dine-in, takeout and delivery.
BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse: Through Sunday, get a Valentine’s Day Bundle for $59.95 via take out and delivery, which includes a choice of two entrees, one appetizer and a Pizookie for dessert.
Black Bear Diner: The chain has “Weekend of Love” specials through Sunday.
Blaze Pizza: Only on Galentine’s Day Saturday, the pizza chain has a collaboration with Saweetie, a hip-hop artist. Get the Saweetie Pie Saturday exclusively on Postmates. The pizza is made with house-made dough, red sauce, shredded mozzarella cheese, crumbled meatballs, pepperoni and red onions. All Blaze orders of $15 or more also come with free Postmates delivery Saturday.
Bonefish Grill: The restaurant has limited-time specials through Monday including a filet and lobster pairing.
The Capital Grille: The chain has a three-course takeout dinner for two Saturday and Sunday.
Carrabba’s Italian Grill: Through Sunday, Carrabba’s has a four-course dinner for two for $50.
Chili’s Grill & Bar: For Galentine’s Day and Valentine’s Day, Chili’s has a two for $25, which includes an appetizer, two full-sized entrees and a dessert. Through Feb. 28, get the February Margarita of the Month, The Grand Romance margarita for $5.
Cinnabon: Through Sunday, get a bundle starting at $15 for delivery with two classic rolls and two cold brew iced coffees. All first-time Cinnabon orders on DoorDash will receive free delivery on an order throughout February.
The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf: The chain has a buy-one-get-one deal Friday through Sunday from 2 p.m. to close for latte and ice blended drinks.
Corner Bakery: Members of the eClub and rewards program get a buy-one-get-one free entree through Sunday.
D’Angelo Grilled Sandwiches: Get two medium sandwiches for $14 Saturday and Sunday with code 8728.
Firehouse Subs: The chain is offering rewards members a free dessert Saturday and Sunday when they enter promo code LOVE in the Firehouse Subs app.
Dickey’s Barbecue Pit: For a limited time, get two Two Meat Plates for $24.
Fatburger/Buffalo’s Express: The company’s 54 co-branded restaurants have a two-day deal Saturday and Sunday. With any purchase, get a six-piece order of Chick’n Vings by mentioning the promotion in restaurants or using code VDAY21 online.
Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar: The restaurant has a Valentine’s Day Prime Surf & Turf for Two meal.
Huddle House: Through Monday, get a buy-one-get-one free Stuffed French Toast Platter with the purchase of two beverages. The offer is available at all locations nationwide.
Juice It Up!: Loyalty members get buy-one-get-one Classic Smoothies through the brand’s mobile app Friday through Sunday.
Marble Slab Creamery: Slab Happy Rewards members get a free small ice cream with purchase of a regular or best value ice cream with a reward offer on the app Saturday through Monday.
McDonald’s: Through Sunday, get free delivery on McDelivery on Uber Eats on orders $20 or more. Taxes and a service fee apply. Also find offers at restaurants through the McDonald’s app.
Moe’s Southwest Grill: Moe Reward members receive a buy-one-get-one entrée free deal to use Friday through Sunday. To get this deal, members had to sign up by 1 a.m. ET Friday.
Morton’s The Steakhouse: Through Sunday, a three-course Steak & Lobster menu for two, plus a bottle of wine is $169.
Ninety Nine Restaurant & Pub: Valentine’s Day specials are available Friday through Sunday for dining in or to go.
O’Charley’s Restaurant + Bar: From Friday through Sunday, the chain has a special, limited-time menu including an appetizer and two entrees for $39. There also are Valentine’s Day-themed beverages including The Cupid’s Cocktail, a strawberry margarita for $5.99.
Olive Garden: From Friday through Sunday, the chain has a Valentine’s Dinner for 2 To Go for $35.99 and a Bake at Home Lasagna Bundle that serves four starting at $39.99.
Pancheros Mexican Grill: Get free delivery Saturday and Sunday on orders placed through the Pancheros app or website.
P.F. Chang’s: The chain has a prix-fixe menu through Monday with appetizer, soup, entree, dessert and bubbly. There’s also a “special surprise” for in-restaurant reservations.
Pieology: Get a Sweetheart bundle deal on signature pizzas and cookies Saturday through Monday. Order two pizzas and two cookies for $22 and the special deal for singles is a pizza and cookie for $11. Pricing may vary.
Postmates: Get 10% cashback on all Postmates deliveries exclusively available through RetailMeNot through Feb. 28.
Round Table Pizza: From Saturday through Feb. 20, get 14% off your entire order with code LOVE14. Some locations are offering heart-shaped pizzas.
Smokey Bones: Get the “Bone Fire Bundle of Love” Friday through Sunday, dine-in only, for $75.
Smoothie King: Through Feb. 20, get free delivery with a $10 online purchase on the chain’s website or app.
Starbucks: Through Sunday, there are no delivery fees on Starbucks Delivers orders $15 or more placed on Uber Eats. Also on Sunday, customers who place a Starbucks Delivers order on Uber Eats will get 50% off their Starbucks order, up to a maximum of $10 off, by using the code SENDLOVE.
Subway: Get 15% off any footlong sub through Feb. 24 with promo code 15OFF. There’s also a limited-time discount off tuna footlongs with promo code ITSREAL.
Taco Bell: The fast-food chain’s new $5 “Build Your Own Cravings Box” is now available for digital customers, including rewards members.
Tim Hortons: On Saturday and Sunday, U.S. customers can get a free donut with the purchase of any size beverage by ordering through the Tim Hortons app or online at participating locations.
Twin Peaks: Through Sunday, corporate locations have drink deals including a $5 Sex on the Beach.
The Wing Experience: The chain has a “Bundle of Love” Friday through Sunday with 12 boneless wings, 12 bone-in wings, a side of crinkle fries and a slice of chocolate cake for $40.
Yard House: Purchase a 64-ounce growler of their love’s favorite beer that comes complete with a customizable “Beer Mine” Valentine’s hang tag Saturday and Sunday.
Valentine’s Day freebies, specials
Boston Market: All kids under 12 get a free cookie, brownie, slice of cake or pie while supplies last Sunday, no purchase necessary. The chain also is giving away free dessert with every purchase.
BurgerFi: You’ve heard of “put a ring on it,” but what about put an onion ring on it? On Sunday for in-store orders, add an onion ring to any burger or side for $1.
Chuck E. Cheese: Buy two large one-topping pizzas and get a free gift, a 9-inch Chuck E. Cheese or Helen Henny plush toy. This offer is for dine-in and carry-out only.
Friendly’s: The chain says it has a buy-one-get-one free sundae deal Sunday.
Hooters: Shred a picture of your ex at participating Hooters’ locations or online at www.hooters.com/ShredYourEx and get 10 free boneless wings with the purchase of 10 wings Sunday. Those who participate online will receive a digital coupon for the deal.
Kolache Factory: Get a buy-one-get-one free deal on Kolaches Sunday with a coupon the company says will be posted on its website.
McAlister’s Deli: The chain’s annual Valentine’s Day Kids Eat Free promotion with up to two free kids meals for kids 12 and under with an adult entree purchase. For the online offer, use promo code BEMINE21.
Mellow Mushroom: Get the Shroom Love Box pizza kit at participating locations with the ingredients to make a Mellow Mushroom pepperoni pizza. The kit is available for take out or online orders for $9.95.
Pretzelmaker: App members get $2.14 off any purchase of $10 or more Sunday in-store or online.
Qdoba: New and existing rewards members get an offer for a free entrée with the purchase of any entrée Sunday in-restaurant, online or through the restaurant’s app.
Slice: First-time customers get $3 off orders of $15 or more with promo code 3VDAY21 on the app Sunday.
Stewart’s Shops: Get 50 cent single scoop ice cream cones Sunday.
Tijuana Flats: Loyalty members get $1 dessert with the purchase of an adult entrée Sunday. Limit one dessert per transaction.
White Castle: Get free delivery on White Castle Uber Eats orders of $20 or more Sunday.
Heart-shaped pizza, donuts and more
The special products are available for a limited time and not all locations are participating. Check before heading out.
Bojangles: Get heart-shaped Bo-Berry Biscuits throughout February.
Buca di Beppo: The chain has a Heart-Shaped Lasagna for Two.
California Pizza Kitchen: Through Sunday, the chain has heart-shaped pizzas and the “Sweet Deal for Two,” a $35 prix fixe menu with choice of one appetizer, two entrees and one dessert.
Chick-fil-A: For a limited time, get 30-count nuggets, 10-count Chick-n-Minis or six-count chocolate chunk cookies in heart-shaped containers.
Donatos: Create your own heart-shaped pizza on the chain’s thin crust through Sunday. The pizza can be ordered online, on the phone or in store.
Dunkin’: The chain has a Valentine’s Day seasonal menu with the Pink Velvet Macchiato, Mocha Macchiato and heart-shaped donuts, such as the Brownie Batter Donut and the Cupid’s Choice Donut filled with Bavarian Kreme and topped with strawberry-flavored icing and pink sprinkles. Ahead of the holiday, Dunkin’ released a wedding pop-up shop with its first-ever wedding merch collection at ShopDunkin.com. The day after Valentine’s Day, Dunkin’ has free coffee on Mondays, part of a February freebie for members of its DD Perks rewards program.
Famous Dave’s: From Friday through Sunday, get a free dessert with the purchase of a “Feast for 2,” which includes cornbread shaped into a heart.
Hardee’s: Get heart-shaped biscuits through Sunday during breakfast hours.
Insomnia Cookies: The cookie chain has a limited-time menu for Galentine’s Day and Valentine’s Day with heart-shaped cookie cakes and red velvet and chocolate-covered strawberry classic and mini cookies.
Jack’s Family Restaurants: Get heart-shaped biscuits with chocolate gravy for pickup on Valentine’s Day at all 191 Jack’s restaurant locations in Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia and Mississippi. Pre-order the heart-shaped biscuits through Saturday on the website or app.
Krispy Kreme: The chain has heart-shaped pastries called “Dough-Notes.” There’s also a “custom Valentine’s Day dozen box designed to look like a post-marked letter that are literally heart-filled – bursting with 12 heart-shaped delicious doughnuts from the brand’s new Valentine’s Day Collection that express perfectly sweet sentiments.” The heart-shaped doughnuts come in four flavors including Sprinkled Heart filled with Cake Batter Kreme, dipped in red icing and topped with heart sprinkles; and Chocolate Caramel Heart filled with Caramel Kreme, dipped in chocolate icing, drizzled with white icing and topped with Valentine confetti sprinkles.
Marco’s Pizza: Get a heart-shaped pizza for $9.99 through Sunday.
Mountain Mike’s Pizza: The chain’s pepperoni pizzas are available in the shape of a heart through Feb. 28.
Papa Gino’s Pizzeria: Heart-shaped small traditional crust pizzas are available through Sunday and served uncut.
Papa John’s: Heart-shaped pizza is available through Sunday. Order using promo code VALENTINE to get for $11. Get the heart-shaped pizza with a heart-shaped brownie for $16 with promo code BEMINE. The pizza comes uncut.
Papa Murphy’s: The HeartBaker Pizza is available through Sunday.
Peter Piper Pizza: Get a large one-topping heart-shaped pizza plus a large crunch dessert for $15.99 at Arizona and New Mexico locations. Available for online ordering and third-party delivery.
Pizza Guys: Get a large one-topping heart-shaped pizza at all locations. Prices vary.
Pizza Hut: The heart-shaped pizza is made on a hand-tossed crust and served uncut. Prices and participation vary.
Portillo’s: The chain has heart-shaped chocolate cakes for $15.99.
Slim Chickens: Through Sunday, get heart-shaped waffles at participating locations.
Valentine’s Day contests, sweepstakes
Grape-Nuts: To apologize for the Grape-Nuts Shortage of 2021, the brand is holding a contest through March 19 where 10 fans will win free Grape-Nuts for a year. For entering the contest, consumers will be notified when the cereal is back and full capacity and will get a coupon for $1.50 off the cereal. Sign up at www.facebook.com/grapenutscereal.
Noosa: The yogurt brand has sweepstakes through Sunday where fans can enter to win a “Yoguzzi” gadget, yogurt and swag. Enter at www.noosayoghurt.com.
Follow USA TODAY reporter Kelly Tyko on Twitter: @KellyTyko
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Heart-shaped pizza, donuts for Valentine’s Day, Galentine’s Day 2021