Let’s face it… Valentine’s Day can be a challenge! Every February 13th, you find yourself rushing to CVS in desperation searching for an old teddy bear or stale box of chocolates. Every year, you vow to do things differently… and then you don’t.

You have two options: 1. Dump your significant other and forget V-Day ever existed. 2. Bake something! Baking is the perfect last-minute gift idea. Even if it is the most simple tasty treat, baking is always a winner. What else says “I really really care about you” more than a giant cupcake or tray of cookies? So this year, put the Hallmark card down and try one of these Valentine’s Day recipes. Click on the underlined link for the full recipe.

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1. Heart Cupcakes | A Helicopter Mom

What you’ll need:

  • Boxed, white cake mix
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup water
  • Vanilla icing (store bought is fine)
  • Sugar sprinkles

2. Creamy Fudge Hearts | Martha Stewart

What you’ll need:

  • Canola oil (for pan and cutters)
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 3 1/2 cups sugar
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • Pink gel food coloring

3. Strawberries and Cream Cake Pops | Betty Crocker

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What you’ll need:

  • 1 box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® white cake mix
  • Water, vegetable oil and egg whites (as called for on cake box)
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup butter softened
  • 1/4 cup strawberry jam
  • 1 cup dried strawberries
  • 1 cup red candy melts
  • 2 bags pink candy melts or coating wafers
  • 36 lollipop sticks
  • 1 large plastic foam
  • 1/2 cup Betty Crocker® Decorating pink sugars

4. Chocolate Dipped Cheesecake Filled Strawberries | Zestuous 

What you’ll need:

  • 1 pint strawberries
  • 1/2 bag chocolate chips
  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • sliced almonds

Baking is a gift fit for anyone. You can bake Valentine’s goodies for your husband, wife, boyfriend, girlfriend, boss, mom or even grandma. If you are a novice in the kitchen, bake together. It’s a fun experience that you can share with a very happy and sweet ending 😉

See, it doesn’t have to be so stressful, it can be delicious!

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Vanessa Rao/ CW44 Tampa Bay