10 Little Luxuries (for $5 or Less!) to Pick up at Aldi for Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching, and whether you use it to celebrate the love of a partner, friends, or yourself, Aldi is filled with small special somethings to help you do it. The bare-bones, budget store has taken American grocery shopping by storm. It’s also one of the best places for fun finds to mark the holidays — at unbelievably affordable prices.
Little luxuries are small tokens or treats that are “nice to have” and don’t cost much, but never quite make it onto the official grocery list. With the holiday in mind, I visited my local Aldi to see what the shelves had in store for us all. As Aldi-lovers can probably guess, I found little luxuries all over the store. Here’s a look at the best budget Valentine’s Day finds you can pick up at Aldi.
1. BelGioioso Mascarpone, $3.75 for 8 ounces
Elevate simple desserts beyond a scoop of ice cream or dollop of whipped cream with mascarpone cheese. This cheese is smooth, buttery, and creamy — like cream cheese, but so much more. At a traditional grocery store, expect to pay at least $6 for the same container that you get at Alid for just $3.75.
Wondering how to use mascarpone? Try making homemade tiramisu, stirring it into Greek yogurt and serve with broiled citrus fruits, or swapping for the cream cheese in this cannoli dip recipe. It can also be served in savory dishes like this creamy lemon mascarpone pasta (made with store-bought tortellini) or this one-pot mushroom pesto pasta.
2. Choceur Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups, $3.99 for 12 ounces
There’s a lot of competition around chocolate peanut butter cups (we should know — we tasted a bunch to find the best nut butter cups you can buy), and would you believe some of the best come from Aldi? These mini cups have the ideal ratio of chocolate to peanut butter, plus the soft peanut butter strikes the right balance between sweet and salty. File this one under Valentine’s Day sweets to treat yourself.
3. Fremont Fish Market Wild-Caught Gulf Shrimp, $4.99 for 12 ounces
Despite how hard I try (and I do try), one cannot live on chocolate alone. For Valentine’s Day dinner, head to Aldi’s freezer section to pick up a bag of wild-caught Gulf shrimp. At just $4.99 for 12 ounces, this frozen shrimp is a steal and costs so much less than what you’d pay at a restaurant.
At The Kitchn, we have over 70 easy shrimp recipes to choose from, and for Valentine’s Day I’d recommend shrimp Alfredo, 15-minute shrimp scampi, or Parmesan risotto with roasted shrimp.
4. Park Street Deli Dark Chocolate Dessert Hummus, $1.99 for 8 ounces
If you’re a dessert hummus skeptic, I’m right there with you. (Even despite a former editor of The Kitchn’s glowing review of chocolate hummus from both Trader Joe’s and Aldi.) But on a recent visit to Aldi, I ran into a neighbor who insisted I try Aldi’s Park Street Deli Dark Chocolate Dessert Hummus. She loves the mint chocolate flavor, which was out of stock, so I chose the dark chocolate over the vanilla bean variety.
The dip is chocolaty, rich, and fudgy with no bean-y aftertaste. If you’re the person who licks the brownie batter from the bowl, this dip is for you. Kids and adults are sure to love this — especially when it’s served with dippers like pretzels, graham crackers, or fresh strawberries.
5. Sundae Shoppe Strawberries & Cream Rose Cones, $3.99 for 4 cones
As I paused in front of the ice cream, a fellow Aldi shopper began raving about these rose-topped ice cream cones. Obviously I had to take them home. These sweet treats really are as pretty as they appear on the box.
The cones are carefully wrapped to reduce breakage, and the rose petal strawberry ice cream design comes protected under a plastic cap. The strawberry-and-cream ice cream layers are just sweet enough with a very light, whipped cream consistency, and the chocolate cone is the ideal final bite. I’d take a bouquet of these roses over the floral ones any day.
6. Bake Shop Triple Chocolate Crème Cake, $4.99 for 20 ounces
Aldi’s Bake Shop cakes are always top notch, and for chocolate-lovers what’s better than a slice of the triple-chocolate crème cake? (If you ask me, nothing!) The cake is rich and moist, and just the right size for you and your five closest friends to have a serving. I recommend warming a slice so that the chocolate chips soften slightly — just be sure to serve it with a cold glass of milk.
7. Mama Cozzi’s Heart-Shaped Pizza, $4.99 for 12 ounces
8. Millville Dark Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Granola, $3.99 for 11 ounces
Show yourself a little love in the a.m., and start the Valentine’s Day celebrations with the first meal of the day. Pick up one of Millville’s decadent granolas: chocolate raspberry truffle or salted caramel white chip. Sprinkle the crunchy cereal over our favorite Greek yogurt (from Aldi, of course) or serve with a splash of dairy or almond milk. Don’t leave for school or work without shaking a serving of granola into a snack bag to nibble on later in the day.
9. Emporium Selection Heart-Shaped Cheese Assortment, $3.99 for 5.3 ounces
Aldi’s cheese selection is one of the reasons we keep coming back. In addition to the everyday offerings, Aldi sprinkles in seasonal or holiday cheeses throughout the year. For Valentine’s Day keep your eyes open for pink and red heart-shaped cheeses in three varieties: mature cheddar, gin and rhubarb, and Wensleydale cheese with raspberries and white chocolate.
10. Specially Selected French Macarons, $4.59 for 12 macarons
I’ve paid several dollars for a single macaron, so when I saw that Aldi sells a box of 12 for less than $5 I was shocked. These cookies have the shiny top and signature foot that all good macarons do. Every box contains a variety of flavors (and Aldi introduces different flavors throughout the year). Choose from a box with raspberry, vanilla, pistachio, salted caramel, lemon, and chocolate or one with dark, milk, and white chocolate flavors.
What little luxuries are you buying at Aldi for Valentine’s Day? Tell us in the comments below.