Named after Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, an aphrodisiac is a food or drink that enhances sexual desire. Whether through placebo effect or actual nutritional science, it turns out some of the wives tales about these amorous foods actually check out! And while no, green m&m’s don’t quite make the list, these foods are classified as an aphrodisiac based on tradition and their hormone and mood-boosting properties.

With the month of loveee officially upon us, we’re breaking down the science behind the top seven desire-enhancing foods. Plus, we’re sharing our favorite recipes that incorporate them in easy and delicious ways. Whether your goal is health-related or you just want to get frisky, check out the romance foods that will get you going for Valentine’s day and beyond!

image: williams sonoma

Almonds

Almonds are high in omega 3 content. Omega 3 helps boost brain power and hormone synthesis – leading to a higher sex drive!

Use them in these recipes…

Almond and Blackberry Cream Pavlova

Almond-Mint Pesto Pasta

Healthy Almond Joy Bites

Avocado

Aside from their rather *ahem* sexual shape (the Aztecs called the avocado “ahuacuatl” meaning testicle tree), avocados are loaded with Vitamin E and associated with increased fertility.

Sweet Potato Guacamole Toasts

Roasted Beet, Avocado & Pistachio Salad

The New Avocado Toast

Basil

Basil’s aphrodisiac properties are thought to correlate directly to its fresh scent, which is said to be stimulating and promote blood flow (if you know what I mean). Plus, having Italian ties doesn’t hurt its case either. After all, is there anything sexier than an Italian cooking you a fresh bowl of pesto pasta?

Spaghetti with Basil, Tomatoes and Burrata

Vanilla Panna Cotta with Strawberries, Basil and Almonds

Peach Basil Sangria 

Chocolate

The most romantic of foods, chocolate is packed with romance boosting compounds. These compounds include anandamide (the feel good chemical), phenylethylamine (the love chemical that triggers endorphin release in the pleasure centers of your brain, inducing feelings like euphoria and attraction), and theobromine (a central nervous system stimulant).

Chocolate Covered Pretzels

Gluten-Free Olive Oil Chocolate Cake

Mexican Pots De Creme

Honey

Packed with boron, this mineral helps balance estrogen in women and enhance testosterone levels in both sexes. Increased testosterone levels are correlated with boosting sex drive and the big O.

Honey Thyme Simple Syrup

Honey Nut Cinnamon Granola

Healthy Honey Cake

Pomegranate

Apart from being visually sensual in color and texture, pomegranates are high in antioxidants. Higher levels of antioxidants increases testosterone and sex drive in both men and women.

Kale, Persimmon and Pomegranate Salad

Burrata Toasts with Mint-Pomegranate Pesto

Minty Pomegranate Punch

Oysters

One of the most famous of aphrodisiac foods, the high concentration of zinc in oysters boosts sperm and increases libido. Pair with a glass of champagne and a chocolatey dessert, and you’ve got the ultimate romantic meal!

Oyster Stew from She Wears Many Hats

Broiled Oysters with Garlic Breadcrumbs from Bon Appetit

Oysters Rockefeller from The Gourmet Gourmand

 

Let us know if you try these and if they leave you feeling especially amorous!

2 comments
  1. 1
    miss agnes | February 14, 2019 at 5:14 am

    Basil: its fresh scent (not ‘it’s fresh scent’ = it’s mean it is). Thank you!

    Reply
    • Hannah Zahner | February 18, 2019 at 11:38 am

      Thanks for the note – edited! 🙂

      Reply
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