NEW YORK — Looking to please your partner? Start in the kitchen, not the bedroom. Seven in 10 Americans polled in a new survey agree that whipping something up for their partner in the kitchen is actually more intimate than having sex.
The study asked 2,000 Americans in a relationship how cooking plays into their relationships and found 79 percent believe good food is the most surefire way to someone’s heart.
Cooking skill is the real path to one’s heart?
The ability to cook is so important, in fact, 43 percent of respondents admit they’ve ended relationships in the past if their partner was a bad cook.
Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of meal kit company, HelloFresh, the survey found three-quarters of those polled are more likely to go on a date with someone they know can cook. In fact, in addition to being kind and having a good sense of humor, respondents consider the ability to cook one of the most attractive traits a potential partner can have.
Food and romance are definitely “joined at the hip.” Sixty-five percent feel that if the meal on a date is bad, the date will be bad too, whereas 72 percent believe the outcome will be better if the food hits the mark.
The ability to cook may be a turn-on but going out to eat can raise some red flags about a new partner.
Chew with your mouth closed and leave a big tip
Over half of respondents say if their date is rude to the staff (56%) or chews with their mouth open (52%), they may not be calling them for a second date.
If you’re thinking about snagging a fry off your date’s plate – think twice; 47 percent think it’s an immediate turn-off when their date eats off their plate without asking first.
Just over a quarter (27%) are also turned off when their date doesn’t tip well or has one too many cocktails (26%).
Respondents shared that it takes four dates for them to feel comfortable shifting the environment of their dates to their partner’s home and five dates for them to feel comfortable hosting their date for dinner. After you reach this point, 81 percent agree that the relationship is serious when you start cooking for your partner – and men are more likely to agree with this than women (85% vs. 78%).
Think about going straight to dessert!
Once their dates are in the comfort of their own homes, 78 percent feel their cooking skills actually improve – citing that they’re more likely to cook at home than go out to dinner (67%) and use this as an opportunity to spend more time with their partner (58%).
“Cooking can be an intimate activity that creates bonds and brings people together, so we encourage couples to get in the kitchen to spend some quality time together preparing a meal,” says Kristin Bryan, Director of Culinary Innovation at HelloFresh, in a statement. “Cooking should be fun and easy, no matter your culinary experience so we are proud that 48% of survey respondents attribute their improved cooking skills to using meal kits.”
When it comes down to deciding what to do for date night, half the poll prefer a home-cooked meal over going out (33%). In fact, 73 percent agree certain foods are more romantic when cooked at home – with chocolate and strawberries topping the list of “sexiest” foods.