Pumpkin Waffles

Pumpkin Waffles with signature

Whenever Stella and Wes have a sleepover at their Bubbie’s house they always come home smelling of syrup. No matter her efforts to wipe them clean they always have that sweet, sugary smell on their soft cheeks-and ears, hair, neck (seriously it is everywhere).  This morning I was craving Pumpkin Waffles so I enlisted my two helpers.

Bisquick Pumpkin Waffles

We have created a take turn system with adding recipe ingredients. I turned my back and they were cracking eggs. They love cracking eggs. And they are good. Like I’m starting to feel like I need a special bumper sticker because I’m so proud. “Proud Parent of kids that can crack a dozen eggs with no egg shell.”

Easy Pumpkin Waffles

Easy Pumpkin Waffles

I digress. Pumpkin waffles. Drippy syrup. Ah yes. I love making special flavored waffles. Did you read my Pizza Waffles post? These pumpkin waffles are so easy-seriously my kids put them together, I just supervised and ran the waffle iron.  They were as yummy as you can imagine, perfectly pumpkiny (is pumpkiny a word?) and ready for creamy butter and drippy syrup.  We scarfed the pumpkin waffles down and headed to church.  When we sat at church, the kids took turns sitting on my lap and couldn’t help but smile at the sweet smell of syrup they both still carried from breakfast.

5.0 from 1 reviews

Pumpkin Waffles
 
Prep time

Cook time

Total time

 

Author:
Serves: 8 waffles

Ingredients
  • 2 cups Bisquick
  • 1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 2 TB Brown Sugar
  • 1 cup Pure Pumpkin
  • ¾ cup Milk
  • 2 eggs

Instructions
  1. Preheat waffle iron.
  2. In a bowl, combine bisquick, pumpkin pie spice and brown sugar. Once combined, add pumpkin and stir. Then add milk and eggs.
  3. Drop batter on a preheated waffle iron until iron indicates waffle is ready.
  4. Serve waffles with butter, syrup and sprinkle with pumpkin pie spice if desired.

Love making fall-inspired breakfast? These Minnesota blogger’s recipes look so yummy!

Best Ever Whole Wheat Pumpkin Pancakes from Pinch of Yum
Apple Oatmeal Muffins from NellieBellie
Easy and Junk-Free Pumpkin Spice Latte from Girl with Blog

Alessi Pork Tenderloin

Pork Tenderloin

I’ll tell you a secret.  I don’t like mushrooms and I really don’t like canned mushroom soup. One of the only times I eat mushrooms is during Thanksgiving when I make homemade mushroom soup for Green Bean Casserole.  So I’ll be honest I wasn’t sure what I would think of Alessi’s Porcini Mushroom Soup. It was super easy to make, just boiling water and the package mix. And…it tastes like homemade mushroom soup, seriously.  Preparing the tenderloin for the recipe is super easy by just adding the tenderloin, flour and seasoning to a 2 gallon bag.  Don’t skip the searing instructions for the pork.  This is what crisps up the outside and gives it such great flavor.  When you take the pork out of the pan, the white vinegar helps get the yummy pork pieces off the pan and then you pour those juices over the pork and then pour that mushroom soup right over it.  After it baked in the oven, I thought it looked amazing but the first thing I did was dip my spoon in that mushroom soup that now mixed with the juice from the meat turned into a tangy gravy. Yes, the girl who doesn’t like mushrooms went straight for the mushroom gravy. This is eat over the stove food. And that’s exactly what I did.

Click here to watch the video from Twin Cities Live on October 14, 2014 when I made this recipe.

Alessi Pork Tenderloin
 
Recipe from Alessi Foods Alice’s Tips: This recipe calls for 2-2 ½ lb pork tenderloin. Most grocery stores sell pork tenderloin in 1-1.25 lb packages so you can use 2 (1 lb) tenderloins for the recipe. When you are ready to dredge the pork, fill a 2-gallon plastic bag with the flour, ground pepper and I also add about a tsp of Alessi salt. Put the tenderloins in the bag and shake until coated. When cooking the risotto, I have a gas stove so it tends to heat fast so I just cook it without the lid on the pan and keep the heat low. If rice sticks to the pan, I add a bit of water and it will keep it creamy. To reach a pork temperature of 145, I cooked my pork for 35 minutes in a 400-degree oven.
Author:
Serves: 8

Ingredients
  • 1 package Alessi Porcini Mushroom Soup
  • 2- 2½ lb. pork tenderloin
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons freshly ground Alessi Peppercorns
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • ½ cup Alessi White Balsamic Vinegar, divided
  • 1 package Alessi Funghi Risotto

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. Bring 3½ cups of water to a boil. Add porcini mushroom soup and whisk while boiling for 1 minute. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Meanwhile, dredge pork in flour and then roll in peppercorns to coat evenly. In a large sauté pan, melt butter over medium-high heat. Sear pork loin until browned on all sides, then transfer to a baking dish. Add balsamic vinegar to pan to deglaze and pour liquid over the pork.
  4. Spoon all of the cooked soup over pork in baking dish. Bake in the oven until the internal temperature at the thickest part has reached 145. Meanwhile, cook the risotto according to package directions.
  5. Let cooked pork rest 5-10 minutes before slicing into 1” thick slices. Serve pork with the risotto and spoon porcini mushroom gravy over the pork and risotto.

I partnered with Alessi and received payment for my television appearance.  Disclosure and Privacy Information

Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut Squash Soup 2

Fall is my very favorite season and I love picking up squash from the Farmer’s market and making Butternut Squash soup.  It’s one of my very favorite fall foods.  I recently posted a link to my Thai Butternut Squash Soup and thought that I should update it by offering just a basic, good old simple creamy Butternut Squash soup recipe for you!  This is a super simple recipe that cooks right in your crock-pot! Butternut Squash are peach in color and have long necks. The necks contain most of the meat so I like to get ones with thick, long necks.  To prepare just use a veggie peeler to remove the skin and then scoop out the seeds. As noted in the recipe, you can use coconut milk or heavy cream, I love the nutty flavors from the coconut milk and if you like the soup on the sweeter side, add brown sugar. For garnish I like to top it with fresh herbs and coconut.  If you love butternut squash, make sure you check out my Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese!

Butternut Squash Soup with Garnish

Butternut Squash Soup
 
Author:
Serves: Makes 6 cups

Ingredients
  • Ingredients:
  • 8 cups of Butternut Squash (peeled and cubed)
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1 cup Coconut Milk or Heavy Cream
  • ½ tsp Cinnamon
  • 2 TB Brown Sugar (if desired)

Instructions
  1. Place cubed squash and water in the crock-pot.
  2. Cook on high for 3 hours.
  3. Use an immersion blender or blender (with measuring cap or lid removed, cover with towel) to blend the squash and water mixture.
  4. Once puréed, add the coconut milk (or heavy cream), cinnamon and brown sugar (if desired).

 

 

Target Cartwheel

Grocery Shopping

It’s not always like this. In fact I took a picture of it and saved on my phone because it doesn’t happen often. Smiling and happy kids during grocery shopping? Again, it doesn’t happen often.  I remember leaving the house for the first time after Stella was born-it was to go shopping at Target. Oh it was an epic disaster. I was trying on nursing bras in the dressing room and she was making an explosive diaper and screaming at the top of her lungs. We were quite the picture back then.  Things have changed; it’s not always picture-perfect but most grocery trips are not as crazy and more often than not, I go grocery shopping by myself.  I know. It’s glorious. My mom friends and I joke about how we love shopping at Target by ourselves, taking our time, checking our list and even reading labels! The joy!  Recently I was on such a trip and I saw someone scanning items with their phone. I asked them about the scanning and they showed me the Cartwheel App on their phone.

Ahh yes! I remember Cartwheel. One night I was scrolling through Facebook and I kept seeing messages about my friends adding things to their “Cartwheel.” It was only until I saw the person scanning at the store did I finally make the connection.  Apparently, I am late to the party.  I asked on my Facebook Page about the app and experiences and people had so much to share! As a newbie, I loved all the tips that people shared! I’m really horrible at couponing and I loved the ease of just quick scanning to see if extra deals exist.  So maybe you are new to the party too? Here’s some info about the app and some of my favorite tips that readers shared.  Oh, just one more thing. I have a huge giveaway for you! How would you like to win a $50 gift card to Target?!? Use it to buy what you want-something for the kitchen, a new outfit for you or even diapers! Please don’t buy diapers, really, buy something for you.  Follow the Rafflecopter form to enter. For a blog post comment, tell me about your experience using Target’s Cartwheel App or tell me what you’d buy if you won the Target gift card!

About the Cartwheel App: The Cartwheel App allows you to redeem coupons for products at Target via your computer, tablet or mobile device. No clipping coupons.  You can search for products, select them from offers and emails or scan an actual product to save. You can access coupons via your phone but you can also use the tablet and desktop version to drop items in your cart too. The deals are saved to your Cartwheel account and when you check out the cashier scans your Cartwheel barcode via your smart phone or a printed copy. The savings are adjusted to your bill and appear on your receipt. You can also use your Red Card savings with the Cartwheel App.

How to get the Cartwheel App: Download the Cartwheel by Target App from your App Store. You can access the wireless services in your Target store while shopping. You can log in to the Cartwheel App by using your Target.com account, Facebook profile or Google profile. If you want the Cartwheel App to stop posting messages on your Facebook timeline about the products you are adding to your cart, here’s what you need to do: On your mobile device, go into your Facebook account profile, under your Facebook cover Picture click More then click View Privacy Shortcuts, then click More Settings, then Apps, then Logged in with Facebook, click Cartwheel by Target and under Visability of app deselect Friends and select Only Me.

Using the Cartwheel App: You can add Cartwheel coupons via the App or Desktop version. Coupons range from 5-50% off and you can use your Cartwheel coupons six times a day and on four items per coupon transaction. Coupons expire and new coupons are updated weekly, monthly and quarterly. To redeem your Cartwheel account use your smart phone to show your Cartwheel barcode or print out your Cartwheel barcode at home and bring it with you (your barcode always stays the same).   Here are some ways to find Cartwheel coupons:

  • Search the Cartwheel weekly email
  • Search the Trending (popular items) and Friends tab (savings and coupons your Facebook friends are using)
  • Search for your favorite products by name using the magnifying glass
  • Search via the offers tab (search categories like apparel or food and then you can sort via newest, discount, trending and expiring)
  • Search via the collections tab (weekly ad, seasonal, hot deals, best sellers)
  • While shopping at Target, use the scan product function and use the barcode reader to scan products and check if coupons exist

Cartwheel Spots and Badges: What’s a Cartwheel Spot and Badge? The Cartwheel Spots are basically the space in your account to add coupons-you have 10 spots-you can add 10 coupons. When you sign up you automatically get 10 spots. Go into My Barcode and you can see in the red bar above the barcode it says “16/17 added” (this is your spot number, as in you have 17 spots for coupons).  Cartwheel Badges are the method by which you can obtain more coupon spots to your account. You can also delete old coupons for more space but if you buy the same things over and over you may wish to keep some in your account. You can click on the Badges tab and see the badges that you have unlocked. For example, I have unlocked the Social Saver badge by seeing the coupons my Facebook friends have added and then adding one of those coupons too and this then gave me an extra spot. If you click on the locked badges, it will give you a clue or explanation about unlocking the badge and earning spots. Some badges unlock when you reach certain savings amounts-Smart Saver ($10), Big Saver ($25), Uber Saver ($50), Benjamin ($100), Blazing Saver ($250) and High Roller ($500). Since I’m a newbie I haven’t  yet unlocked my Smart Saver badge (for the record I’m at $9.67), but I looked at some of my Facebook friends savings and one of my friends has saved $425 so far! One of my readers, Sara-lynn, commented that she has also saved almost $500!

I thought the FAQ in the Cartwheel help center was really helpful in answering questions, check it out here.

I asked my readers for their tips on using the Cartwheel App, here are some of my favorites:

Target Cartwheel App

Thanks to my readers for all the tips and advice for using the Cartwheel App!

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This giveaway was provided by Dining with Alice.

Fra Diavolo

Fra Diavolo

Fra Diavolo. It just sounds fancy saying it, doesn’t it? I love fancy easy dinners.  You know the ones that really don’t take too much time and effort but boy do they look and taste fancy! This Fra Diavolo with seafood over risotto is one of those dishes!

I made this recipe for Twin Cities Live on Friday, October 3, 2014. Watch the video here. Video available for one year.

Fra Diavolo with Risotto

Will asked me what was for dinner and I said, “Fra Diavolo.” He said “Wow.” He had no idea what I was making but it sounded fancy! Fra Diavolo means “Brother Devil” and for this dish it is named that because of the spicy and zesty sauce.  But don’t worry, this isn’t I need a glass of milk spicy, this is yummy spicy with a kick perfect for pairing with seafood! For this dish you can use your favorite fresh seafood or buy one of those 1 lb bags of mixed assorted seafood. The zesty sauce with seafood is served over Alessi’s Risotto Milanese.  A beautiful risotto with Saffron that you don’t need to babysit-now that’s fancy, and easy!

Recipe from Alessi Foods

I partnered with Alessi and received payment for my television appearance.  Disclosure and Privacy Information

Fra Diavolo
 
Recipe from Alessi Foods
Author:
Serves: 4

Ingredients
  • 1 (8 ounce package) Alessi Risotto Milanese
  • 1 (24 ounce jar) Alessi Fra Diavolo Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Alessi Garlic Puree
  • ¼ cup dry white wine
  • Alessi Sea Salt, to taste
  • 1 lb. assorted seafood (shrimp, scallops, white fish, lobster etc.)

Instructions
  1. Cook risotto according to package directions. When 10-12 minutes remain on risotto cooking time, pour fra diavolo sauce into a separate heavy bottomed pot and stir in garlic and white wine.
  2. Simmer sauce on medium high until it begins to bubble.
  3. Salt seafood, add to sauce and cook about 7-10 minutes, until seafood is no longer transparent. Turn heat off and cover to keep warm.
  4. Fluff cooked risotto with a fork.
  5. To plate, spoon risotto onto a plate or shallow bowl and use the bottom of a ladle to make a small well in the risotto. Ladle the seafood sauce into the risotto well and serve immediately.

Cider Pork Chops

Cider Pork Chops

When I wrote my Cider Pork Roast recipe post last year, things weren’t great. In fact they were quite awful.  Our family, including me, had been in and out of the hospital. As many parents know, parenthood is always a rocky boat ride but the minute someone in the house is sick, it immensely upsets the course of the cruise.  So where did we leave off with the roast? Oh yes, there our family was sitting in the kitchen, some on the floor, some standing, careful not to let the drips of juice land anywhere but in their mouth.

Pork Chops

This month I hosted a private dinner party in my backyard and cooked for 3 couples as part of an auction prize.  They asked me to share a recipe that reflected me and my cooking and I immediately thought of the Cider Pork Roast. I told them about how I saw it on the cover of Bon Appétit magazine and I needed it. It sounds weird to say that aloud-that I needed a recipe. But I truly needed an escape from the madness of sickness and demands; I just needed comfort. I wanted comfort from food.  As you know from my post it was everything I hoped for-it was quintessential comfort food-the can’t wait until it is plated food-but it was more than that.  In a moment of parenting and life when things seemed to be rock-bottom it brought our family together in an unimaginable way and I realized my personal need to cook as a way to relieve stress. My version of their Cider Pork Roast was featured on Bon Appétit’s web page and things in our family continue to ebb and flow. We realize as parents that there is a secret beauty-if you can right the ship during those truly bad times you can get through anything. I’ve also realized I don’t want to invest the days of preparation and time involved in that pork roast recipe because I want to have it on a regular basis. So I worked on this pork chop recipe. My poor family had to eat it three times this month until I got it just right. I’m kidding about my poor family, each time I made it they couldn’t get enough. Just last night, there we were surrounded by our family stealing bits and pieces of pork off the cutting board just like old times.

Adapted recipe of my Cider-Brined Pork Roast (an adapted recipe of Bon Appétit Cider-Brined Pork Roast with Potatoes and Onions)

Pork Brine

Grilled Pork Chops

Cider Pork Chops
 
Adapted recipe of my Cider-Brined Pork Roast (an adapted recipe of Bon Appétit Cider-Brined Pork Roast with Potatoes and Onions )
Author:
Serves: 8

Ingredients
  • 1 cup Light Brown Sugar
  • ¾ cup plus 1 tsp Salt, divided
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 3 TB Ground Coriander, divided
  • 2 tsp Ground Black Pepper, divided
  • 1 quart Fresh Apple Cider or Apple Juice (4 cups)
  • 8 Center Cut Pork Chops (about 3.5 lbs)
  • 4 TB Olive Oil

Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan, bring brown sugar, ¾ cup salt, 2 bay leaves, 1 TB of coriander, 1 tsp ground black pepper and 2 cups of water to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 8 minutes.
  2. Prepare a large bowl with 2 cups ice and 4 cups cider. Add brine mixture to ice and cider.
  3. In a 2 gallon resealable plastic bag, add pork chops and cider brine. Seal bag and place inside a 9×13 pan and chill in refrigerator for 2 hours or more.
  4. Once brined, dry off pork with paper towels (I individually wrap each chop with two towels) and then let the wrapped chops sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes.
  5. Unwrap the chops from the paper towels and Rub pork with 2 TB coriander, 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp ground pepper.
  6. Heat 4 TB olive oil in a large skillet over medium-heat. Brown pork on both sides about 4-6 minutes each side until dark and crispy.

Afton Apple Orchard

Family Hayride Afton Apple

I’m starting to accept that I’m a very ritualistic person when it comes to certain activities and seasons. Last month I posted a picture of my Minnesota State Fair spreadsheet and through the online shouts of cheer, when it was shared there were some critics. Some people think I need to relax a bit with my planning. Ok, I get it, I am a bit type A (some people also applauded this).  Just like the Fair, when I think about fall I start to create more lists in my head of experiences and fun activities and for me, one of those activities is a trip to the orchard with my family. I’ve heard from friends recently asking my perspective on an “authentic and fun” orchard experience. I don’t mean to get philosophical when it comes to visiting an orchard but really, what matters to you? Is it quiet, family activities, organic apples, a place to take family pictures, music, wine? Once you figure that out go check Minnesota Grown web page and see what they have to offer! Frankly, there isn’t a perfect orchard that fits everyone, you have to do what your family loves!

Apple picking Afton Apple

So I’ll tell you what’s on my checklist (don’t worry I won’t get you guys all excited and make a spreadsheet): apple-picking, bonus if there is also other fruit-picking, family activities, especially hayrides, not too far from the Twin Cities (under an hour) and one very important component-food products made from apples and/or pumpkin.  For me, the place that meets our family’s orchard checklist is Afton Apple Orchard.

Afton Apple Hayride

About 30 minutes from St. Paul, visiting Afton Apple is a short car trip away. When you reach the entrance you see fields of berries and beautiful apple trees. Set up right at the entrance is an apple sampling station. I recommend doing this first so your family can decide what apples you want to pick during the day.  Among the farm is also a playground, petting zoo and gigantic tire climber.  There’s plenty of room to run and play, take a nice walk and coming here is a perfect day tip for families-we spent 3 hours at the orchard and even then we had to convince the kids to leave.

Afton Apple Tractor Hayride

The first thing we did when we got there was hop on the hayride.  They have several tractors going that take you all around the orchard and the tractor driver stops at different points and yells out the apple “stops” as in where the particular apples are if you want to get off and pick. Rarely did you have to wait very long for the tractor and it was a particularly busy Sunday afternoon when we went.  We loved just riding the hayride around the orchard (we rode it twice) and then we got off at the playground.

Afton Apple Playground and Tires

At the playground there were really unique swings, slides and tubes. Next to the playground was a petting zoo where Wes had fun feeding goats! There is also a giant tire climber which was really fun for everyone to check out.  After we played for a while I picked up some apple doughnuts-a must try when you are there. Each of us had our own because there was no way we could share. Later in the season they will also have pumpkin doughnuts. We also tried their apple slushie and apple float-both really great drinks!

Apple Doughnuts Afton Apple

After we refueled we headed to the hayride and got off on the Red Barron stop. When I sampled the apples, I thought these were perfectly sweet eating apples that would be great for a snack, baking or savory meal. The apples were $1.90 per pound and we filled up almost two bags. The kids had a great time picking apples, well except for when one fell and hit Weston on the back of the head! Poor guy! After we picked we headed back on the hayride and went out to the berry fields and picked red and yellow raspberries.  We picked one pint and Stella was very serious about picking only the perfect berries! Weston on the other hand was very serious about eating the berries and very sad to leave, well actually we all were-it was a great orchard and look forward to visiting again!

Berry Picking at Afton Apple

Sad to leave Afton Apple

Afton Apple Orchard
14421 So. 90th St. Hastings, MN 55033
651-436-8385
Note: There is an admission charge-$4 for ages 5 and up (adults and children must pay admission) and $3 for ages 4 and under.

 

 

5 Easy and Cheesy Back to School Meals

Back to School Meals

It’s back to school time. The kids have their new clothes, supplies and you took that really cute first day of school picture. They are ready to start the new school year, but are you? Back to school is an exciting time but it also can mean chaotic morning routines, shuttling between places, athletics, after school activities, homework and did I mention, you were supposed to make dinner sometime in there?

So how can you stay ahead of the game when it comes to back to school meal planning?  First, my go-to meals for back to school time must be easy.  For me that means easy assembly, simple ingredients and also time-saving techniques so freezer-friendly, one-pot or crock-pot meals are all meals I have on speed dial.

This month I’m partnering with Crystal Farms to bring you my recommendations for Easy and Cheesy Back to School Meals.  I’ve put together five meal recommendations that are from the Crystal Farms recipe web page and a few from my own collection. Click through to the recipes and see my notes below for my tips and tricks. Buffalo Chicken

Cheesy Buffalo Chicken Skillet Dinner: Crystal Farms
I love this skillet dinner. With just one pan, you have yourself a super easy and flavorful dinner.  I doubled the pasta, used chicken strips, 1/3 cup of ranch, 2 TB of Buffalo Wing sauce, and then I used Crystal Farms crumbled blue cheese in place of the shredded cheese.

Cheesy Risotto

Cheesy Crock-Pot Risotto with Sausage: Dining with Alice
My Cheesy Crock-Pot Risotto is a perfect back to school meal because the hard work is done for you in the crock-pot! No standing around the stove stirring, the risotto cooks right in the crock-pot. This cheesy risotto pairs perfectly with your favorite sausage or shredded pork or chicken. We enjoyed ours with wild rice sausage!

Egg Cups

Cheese and Veggie Scrambled Egg Cups: Crystal Farms
Does your family love breakfast for dinner as much as ours? You can sub in any of your favorite veggies or even cooked sausage or mini pepperoni.  Store in the freezer and they make a super easy breakfast on the go too!

Mac and Cheese
Creamy Butternut Mac and Cheese: Dining with Alice
This recipe is so easy and is bright orange from squash! Just as fast as boxed mac and cheese, this recipe is so creamy and cheesy you might have to fight the kids for this one!

Grilled Cheese
Ultimate Grilled Cheese: Crystal Farms
You want to talk easy? This is it.  So simple and so delicious.  These open-faced grilled cheese sandwiches are a perfect way to use up the last of the tomatoes from the garden.  I substituted bagels for the toast and used Crystal Farms Variety Pack of Cheddar, Marble Jack and Swiss and Baked at 450 for 12 minutes.

Crockpot

Photo: Amazon

The kids got new backpacks, clothes and shoes and I didn’t forget about you! You need something special to celebrate back to school. How about something for the kitchen? Something shiny. Oh and she’ll cook for you when you aren’t at home!  That’s right, I’m giving away a Crock-Pot! Follow the Rafflecopter instructions to enter to win a Programmable Cook and Carry Oval Slow Cooker! For a blog post entry, tell me which one of these Easy and Cheesy Back to School recipes you’d like to make!

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This post and giveaway was sponsored by Crystal Farms. For more information, please see my Disclosure and Privacy Information.

Creamy Butternut Mac and Cheese

Mac and Cheese

This is one of our family’s very favorite recipes. Seriously, you do not need boxed mac and cheese with this recipe! This is a creamy and cheesy mac and cheese that is a super quick weeknight meal. Not only does it sneak in some squash, it also reheats perfectly. Get this on your meal speed dial! This recipe is part of my Crystal Farms Easy and Cheesy Back to School Meals. Don’t forget to enter to win a crock-pot below!

Ingredients:
1 lb Cavatappi Pasta
1 cup Crystal Farms Sharp Cheddar (shredded)
1 cup Crystal Farms Marble Jack (shredded)
10 ounces Frozen Winter Squash puree (defrosted)
2/3 cup Sour Cream
1 tsp Salt
½ cup Heavy Cream
Directions:
Prepare pasta according to package directions.  Once pasta is cooked, combine pasta, cheeses, squash, sour cream, salt and heavy cream in a large stockpot over low heat.  Stir until cheese is melted and ingredients are combined.

Serves 8.

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Cheesy Crock-Pot Risotto

Cheesy Risotto

I’ve been making risotto in the crock-pot for years.  It is a perfect week night meal because it can be made during nap time or the night before and you can reheat it and serve it a variety of ways.  This recipe is for my cheesy crock-pot risotto.  It is so creamy and pairs perfectly with pulled chicken or pork, sausage or make it vegetarian and pair with veggies and beans.

This recipe is part of my Crystal Farms Easy and Cheesy Back to School Meals. Don’t forget to enter to win a crock-pot below!

Ingredients:
1 ½ cups Arborio Rice
2 TB Onion (chopped)
¼ cup Butter
¼ cup Coconut or Olive Oil
2 tsp Salt
¾ cup White Wine (I like to use sweet whites like a Vino Verde)
4 ¼ cups Chicken Broth (32 ounce box)
1 package (8 ounce) Crystal Farms Asiago and Parmesan Blend

Directions:

In a crock-pot add rice, onion, butter, oil, salt, wine and broth.  Stir to combine.  Cook on high 1 hour 55 minutes. Once cooked, add Asiago and Parmesan cheese.  Serve with your favorite sausage.

Serves 6

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