Ina Garten and Husband Jeffrey Celebrate Valentine's Day with the Ultimate Romance Playlist

"Every Valentine’s Day needs a romantic soundtrack, right?" Food Network star Ina Garten wrote

Ina & Jeffrey kiss
Jeffrey and Ina Garten. Photo: COURTESY INA GARTEN

Ina Garten is helping fans find a little romantic inspiration this Valentine's Day.

On Monday, the Barefoot Contessa star shared a smooching selfie with husband Jeffrey Garten to her Instagram account, not just in celebration of Valentine's Day but to also direct fans to a curated playlist she made of her favorite love songs.

"Every Valentine's Day needs a romantic soundtrack, right??" Ina wrote in the post's caption. "I have a playlist of all my favorite love songs so all you need to do is press play! It's available on Apple Music, Pandora, and Spotify — and I hope you love it! You can link to the playlist in my bio. Happy Valentine's Day!"

Her playlist includes a range of classic romantic melodies sure to put anyone in the mood, with songs such as Louis Armstrong's "What A Wonderful World," The Temptations's "My Girl," The Righteous Brothers' "Unchained Melody," Nat King Cole's "L-O-V-E," and Etta James's signature ballad, "At Last."

Other tunes in the near 60-song set include Aretha Franklin's "You Make Me Feel Like (A Natural Woman)," Stevie Wonder's "Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I'm Yours)," Marvin Gaye's "Let's Get It On," and Frank Sinatra's "The Way You Look Tonight."

Ina Garten; Jeffrey Garten
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Ina and Jeffrey wed in 1968, and appear to have a picture-perfect marriage (Barefoot Contessa viewers are used to seeing Ina in the kitchen whipping up one of her famous roast chickens, and he comes home with a bottle of wine, an appetite and a smile).

This dynamic, they told PEOPLE in 2018, isn't put on for the cameras. Ina spends most of her days at their home in East Hampton, N.Y., testing recipes for her show or upcoming cookbook, while Jeffrey — a professor at the Yale School of Management — now teaches remotely. "He's just the best friend anybody could ever have," she said.

Still, there's one side of Jeffrey that viewers don't get to see on the show. "He plays this adorable kind of doofus guy who comes in and goes, 'Oh this is delicious, what's in it?'," Ina teased. "But in reality he's extremely smart, and has very interesting ideas on the world and the economy," she adds. "His career has spanned government, academia, banking, and writing — he's authored many books — I'm still just in awe of him."


The couple's love story began when the pair first met in 1963 when Ina was 15 and visiting her brother at Dartmouth College, where Jeffrey was also a student. The pair tied the knot in December 1968, when she was 20 and he was 22.

Soon after saying "I do," Jeffrey was sent on an Army deployment to Thailand. "I wrote to Ina every single day," he explained. "During the whole year, I was only able to call her once."

Ina saved all the letters. "I was recently reading through them, and I came across one that said, 'I'd love to take you to Paris, and we won't have enough money for a hotel, but maybe we'll go camping,'" Ina recalled with a laugh.

Following Jeffrey's deployment, the couple went on that Parisian camping trip. In a 2021 interview, Ina credited her cooking passion to a French chicken dish the pair ate while on the four-month adventure in France when they were newlyweds.

"We've had the good fortune of growing up together in a very compatible way," Jeffrey told PEOPLE. "We're like two vines that grew and wrapped themselves around one another."

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Neither says their marriage has been hard work. "Our relationship is just so stress-free, and we have a wonderful time together," Ina insisted. "It's not like we have highs and lows, and we have to work things out."

She also acknowledges that being able to focus only on each other has made it easier for them. "We have more freedom because we decided not to have children — that's made a huge difference," she explained. "Every year for many years we had that conversation. It would keep coming up and we would say, 'Oh, let's just wait.' Eventually, we said, 'What are we still having this conversation for?' "

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