Date Night Moments with the Perfect Grilled Summer Dessert

Summer date nights are some of my favorite and we're always looking for creative ways to change up our favorite go-to date night activities. And as summer winds down, we're holding on tight to these long, mild summer nights. The time in between our toddler's bedtime and our bedtime provides the perfect opportunity for some mini date moments. We get to spend quiet time together and if we're intentional about it, we can connect just as much at home as we do when we escape for a date night out on the town.

One of our favorite things to do in the summer is to grill together. Since we discovered this hobby a few years ago, we've learned how to grill a lot of delicious things, but other than roasting marshmallows over the grill, we had yet to try desserts. A few weeks ago, I had the idea to make one of our favorite desserts at home on the grill and it definitely did not disappoint! These skillet cookies are something that we used to enjoy at a restaurant near us. That restaurant closed and although there are other locations, they aren't close, so we rarely get to indulge. Being able to make them at home is perfect and so much fun for date night! They will also be fun to make as our kids get older and can enjoy them with us.

Related: Five Summer Activities for After the Kids Are in Bed

at home date night ideas

How to Make Skillet Cookies

Cast-iron skillet: We like to use mini 3.5" diameter sized skillets to make personal cookies but a 5" or 6.5" skillet would be the perfect size if you want to share! These are the ones we own. {affiliate link}

Cookie dough: You can use any type that you would like. We love a basic cookie dough and will switch out the add-ins. For this date night, we had chocolate chunk but I like English toffee and Joe likes white chocolate macadamia nut.

Ice cream: We usually pick vanilla, vanilla bean or French vanilla for our cookie skillets, but every so often, we'll choose a flavor with add-ins that compliment the cookie dough we've chosen.

Hot Fudge Sauce: The recipe for our favorite homemade kind is below. You could use any combination of toppings. We've also used caramel topping in the past, which would pair REALLY well with the Cashew Milk Salted Caramel Cluster.

Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce

Crushed Candy (optional): Pick your favorites! Because we were using Cashew Milk Salted Caramel Cluster this time around, we opted out of any additional candy add ins or toppings. 

To assemble your Grilled Cookie Skillet, start with the cookie dough. Press a cookie sized ball of dough into the bottom of your skillet, making sure that it reaches all edges and that the thickness of the dough is even across the entire cookie. You could use the back of a spoon or clean fingers for this step. I found that the back of a clean spoon worked the best for me.

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homemade cookie dough

Next, place your skillet(s) on a grill that has been heated to 350° F. I suggest putting your skillets on the top rack of the grill so that they aren't directly above the heat. Close the lid and allow your cookies to bake for 5 minutes. Check to see how done they are with a toothpick. You may choose to remove them from the grill at this point or let them cook a bit longer, depending on whether you prefer a more gooey or crunchy cookie. We're ALL about the warm and gooey cookies in our marriage. (If you don't have a grill, you can still make these in the oven. Just follow the same baking directions! You may need to bake the cookies for 10 minutes instead.)

Once the cookie has been baked the way you like, remove it from the grill, keeping in mind that the skillet will be extremely hot! Let it cool for just a few minutes before you start adding your toppings. You will still want to eat the dessert while it's fairly warm, but adding anything to the top of the cookie will create a big, melted mess if it's too hot. A melty mess could taste really delicious, but we're not a fan of the clean up that it requires and would rather spend our time together doing other things, so we avoid the mess as much as possible.

Top your cookie with a scoop of ice cream, drizzle homemade hot fudge sauce over the top and finish it off with a sprinkle of your favorite crushed candy pieces if you choose. Now dig in and enjoy! I try to savor my cookie because it's so good that I really miss it when it's gone.

date night dessert

Savor your dessert and the time that you have to spend with each other! Talk about the things that you want to do together before summer is over, and maybe start planning some fun adventures for next summer. Some things require a year of saving and planning and it's fun to have something to work toward and look forward to together! We've got a few last summer activities plans before baby girl arrives and while the days are still long and the nights are still warm. We're also currently making plans for an anniversary getaway next year. It will probably be the next time that we are able to get away, just the two of us, for a night or two and we want to make it good!

Related: Rooftop Rendezvous - Our New Tradition

make your own cookie skillets
date night ideas

Joe and I like to eat our dessert while we sit on our little deck, chat and watch the sunset. You could eat your Skillet Cookie while watching your favorite movie, during a firework show, before stargazing, or while you participate in any of your other favorite, relaxing summer activities together! This date moment was the perfect break that we needed in our week. We've been so busy toddler proofing our house and preparing for the arrival of our new little one in a month or two, we needed time to relax together.

What summer date night activity will you combine with your Grilled Cookie Skillet dessert?!

Grilled Skillet Cookies, perfect for enjoying for a summertime date night.