8 ounces elbow macaroni
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup WONDRA flour
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 cup half and half
1 cup WHOLE milk
4 ounces Velveeta
1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese
2 cups medium sharp cheddar, divided 1 1/2 cups + 1/2 cup

  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Lightly grease baking dish or individual ramekins.
  • Prepare macaroni per package directions. Drain and set aside.
  • Melt butter in a large cast iron skillet over medium high heat.
  • Gradually whisk in flour until smooth for 2 minutes.
  • Stir in salt, pepper and granulated garlic.
  • Gradually together the half and half with the milk.
  • Whisk milk mixture into the flour mixture.
  • Cook, whisking constantly 8-10 minutes until thickened.
  • Stir in Velveeta until smooth.
  • Stir in Swiss cheese and 1 1/2 cups of the medium sharp cheese until smooth.
  • Remove from heat and fold in macaroni.
  • Pour into prepared baking dish and top with remaining cheese.
  • Bake 20-35 minutes. The longer you bake it, the crustier the top gets.


Flavorful chicken made with a creamy tomato rose sauce in your slow cooker and ready to serve over your favorite pasta in no time at all.


1 pound boneless chicken breasts, sliced into bite sized pieces or slivers
1 small bunch green onion FINELY minced
2-3 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
1/2 cup of your favorite Alfredo sauce
1/2 cup of your favorite spaghetti sauce
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese + more for serving
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon onion powder
2 teaspoon dried oregano
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
FRESH chopped Italian parsley

  • Whisk together the garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Generously season chicken pieces with seasoning mix.
  • Spray the bottom of your slow cooker with non-stick spray or line with liners.
  • Place chicken pieces in the bottom of the cooker.
  • Top with onions and garlic.
  • Whisk together the alfredo and red sauce and pour over chicken pieces.
  • Sprinkle both cheeses over the sauce.
  • Cover and cook on high for 1-2 hours or until cooked thoroughly. (See notes)
  • Gently toss together to coat chicken.
  • Serve over your favorite pasta.
  • Garnish with parsley and a bit more grated Parmesan

NOTE: If you wish to cook your chicken on the low setting, increase your cooking time to 3-4 hours, depending on the size of your chicken pieces.


4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 cloves garlic, minced
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1/3 cup FINELY shredded Mozzarella cheese
1 cup Marinara sauce

  • Preheat oven to 375°.  
  • Wash and dry chicken.
  • Spread marinara sauce in LIGHTLY greased 9×13 baking dish.  
  • Combine the remaining ingredients into a paste.
  • Spread the paste evenly on the chicken breasts.  
  • Bake uncovered for about 30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
  • Top with Mozzarella cheese and bake 5-10 minutes more until the cheese is golden brown.
  • Spoon desired amount of sauce over chicken before serving.

Originally posted 6-1-2012 ~ Updated 4-7-23


Cooking for a crowd? Try this classic fettuccine Alfredo sauce combined with tender fettuccine and then baked to perfection for an easy to prepare and serve version!

Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 20 minutes Total Time: 30 minutes

16 ounces fettuccine
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup WONDRA flour
2-3 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
1 cup homemade chicken broth
1 1/2 cups WHOLE milk
2 cups mozzarella cheese, divided
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1 teaspoon herbs de Provence
1/8 teaspoon FRESH ground nutmeg
FRESH ground Salt and pepper, to taste
Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish

  • Preheat the oven to 375°.
  • Lightly grease a large baking dish.
  • Cook the linguine according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  • In a large saute pan, melt the butter.
  • Add the garlic and cook 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
  • Whisk in the flour until smooth.
  • Gradually and alternately whisk in the chicken broth and milk, stirring until smooth. Cook and stir 5 minutes, or until sauce has thickened.
  • Reduce heat and add half of the mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses.
  • Season to taste with herbs de Provence, nutmeg, salt and pepper.
  • Combine the sauce with the cooked linguine and toss to coat well.
  • Transfer the pasta to the prepared baking dish.
  • Sprinkle with the remaining cheeses.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown.
  • Let stand 5-10 minutes before serving.
  • Sprinkle with fresh parsley for garnish.

NOTE: Don’t be afraid to add more milk to thin out the sauce as necessary to your desired consistency.



2 teaspoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons Bragg’s liquid aminos
3 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes 
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce 
1 teaspoon sugar 
2 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
One 2-inch piece ginger, FINELY minced
2 tablespoons avocado oil
2 to 3 dried red chile peppers 
1/2 pound green beans or Chinese long beans, sliced on a diagonal into 1-inch pieces 
1 small red bell pepper, seeded and sliced or diced
1/2 bunch scallions, trimmed and sliced on a diagonal 
1/2 teaspoon crushed black peppercorns and coriander seeds 
1/2 cup unsalted roasted peanuts, plus more for garnish (optional)
Cooked Jasmine rice or yakisoba noodles, for serving 

  • Whisk together the cornstarch, 1 tablespoon Bragg’s liquid aminos and 1 tablespoon rice vinegar in a medium bowl.
  • Add the chicken, then toss to coat and let marinate at room temperature, 20 minutes.
  • Combine the hoisin, sugar, remaining 2 tablespoons Bragg’s liquid aminos, remaining 2 tablespoons rice vinegar and 2 tablespoons water in a small bowl.
  • Grate the garlic and ginger into the sauce. Stir and set aside.
  • Heat a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add the oil, then add the chicken.
  • Stir-fry 3 to 5 minutes, until browned on the outside.
  • Add the chiles, green beans, red pepper, scallions whites, peppercorn powder and peanuts (if using) stir-frying 3 to 5 minutes, until fragrant and the veggies are crisp-tender.
  • Add the sauce and simmer 3-4 minutes until thickened slightly and the chicken is completely cooked through.
  • Garnish with the scallion greens and additional peanuts.
  • Serve with the rice or Yakisoba noodles.


Noodle kugel is a traditional Jewish holiday dish that is USUALLY served sweet. BUT, I needed a side dish and wanted something more flavorful and less than boring the mashed potatoes or rice. I just love the tender goodness of a warm kugel so decided to try making it into a savory side dish. Potato kugel is the traditional savory route, but the noodles really oomph it up a notch with my family.


4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, divided, plus more for the pan
8 ounces cooked al dente egg noodles, rinsed and cooled
FRESH ground sea salt and trim-color pepper
1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
2 LARGE eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup SMALL curd cottage cheese
3 tablespoons finely chopped chives
1 cup baby Swiss or Gruyère cheese, grated, divided
1/2 cup plain Panko breadcrumbs

  • Heat the oven to 350°.
  • Butter 9×9 or 1½-quart casserole dish.
  • In a medium bowl, toss the noodles with 3 tablespoons of the butter; season with paprika, salt and pepper.
  • In another medium bowl, whisk the eggs, sour cream, cottage cheese, chives, and ½ cup of the Gruyère to combine.
  • Add to the noodles and fold to combine; lightly seasoning to taste with salt and pepper as needed.
  • In a small bowl, mix the breadcrumbs and the remaining 1 tablespoon of the butter; season to taste with additional salt and pepper.
  • Arrange noodles into the prepared pan.
  • Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the noodles.
  • Top with the breadcrumbs.
  • Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until the edges are bubbling, the crumbs are browned, and the center is completely set. If it begins to brown and crisp too much add a loose layer of foil until the last 10-15 minutes.


The beauty of casseroles is that the sky’s the limit. You CAN make them up as you go! Whether you are trying to clean out the refrigerator or recreate your grandmother’s budget leftover dinner at the end of the week this is a category of recipes that has no end.

With fall approaching we are entering the CASSEROLE phase of the year. This Amish Country Casserole I adapted from LOU LOU GIRLS is ALL about the comfort!! It can easily be made ahead of time and tastes wonderful whether you bake it and serve it now or freeze it and bake it later!

1 (12 oz.) bag medium bow tie noodles or pasta shape of your choice
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 pound ground sweet Italian sausage
1 can CAMPBELL’S condensed tomato soup
1 can CAMPBELL’s cream of ANYTHING soup (your choice, though I like either mushroom or celery)
1 cup WHOLE milk
FRESH ground sea salt & black pepper, to taste
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce 
1/2 cup sweet Vidalia onion, diced
2 to 3 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese or cheese flavor of choice (I often use Jack)

  • Preheat oven to 350°. 
  • Spray a 9×13 baking dish with non stick cooking spray and set aside.
  • Cook pasta according to package directions and drain well.
  • In a large skillet melt butter, add onions and cook a couple minutes before adding beef, cooking crumbly.
  • Drain off grease.
  • In a large bowl stir together tomato soup, cream of anything soup, milk, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce and minced garlic.
  • Fold in pasta and ground beef mixture.
  • Spread mixture into prepared baking dish.
  • Bake, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes.
  • Then top with grated cheese and serve with a salad.



These mushy pea and ricotta stuffed shells are a TRUE comfort food for a crisp fall evening!

18 to 20 JUMBO shells
1-2 tablespoons avocado oil
3/4 cup mushy peas – from leftovers preferably
1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
1/4 cup grated pecorino cheese + extra for garnish
2 LARGE garlic cloves, minced
1/2 pound QUALITY sweet Italian sausage
1/2 pound LEAN ground beef
3-4 green onions, sliced thin
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3/4 teaspoon sea salt, more for the pasta water
FRESH ground sea salt & black pepper, to taste
2 cups homemade tomato marinara sauce (you can use jarred sauce, but we prefer homemade from the garden)

  • Preheat the oven to 425°.
  • In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook the pasta shells for 10 minutes, until al dente. Drain and drizzle with a little avocado oil to keep them from sticking together.
  • Brown sweet Italian sausage, ground beef and green onions until meat is cooked through and crumbly. Drain off grease well!
  • In a large bowl, combine the mushy peas with the ricotta, pecorino, garlic, oregano, lemon zest, red pepper flakes, salt, FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Spread the marinara in the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish.
  • Stuff each shell with the filling and place in the dish.
  • Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.
  • Uncover and bake 5 minutes more until cheese is browned and bubbly.
  • Serve with more marinara on the side.

NOTE: This recipe freezes well for an easy weeknight meal!

  • After assembling the shells in the baking dish, cover tightly and freeze.
  • To thaw, transfer the dish to the fridge about 10 hours before you plan to serve it.
  • Remove from the fridge and let sit at room temp while the oven preheats.
  • Bake, covered, for 30 minutes, or until thawed and warmed through.


One of my grandmothers used to say there were two ways to things – Her way or the wrong way. This “attitude” became a family “sore” spot a good deal of the time as there are always multiple ways to reach the same end results. For me it always seemed to resonate with recipes… LOL fast forward to this recipe and she was in my head about the best way to write this up.

There really are two ways to make this, the short way and the LONG way, which is my preferred method because I find it the most flavorful is to make the chicken in the slow cooker the day before you want to assemble the casserole.

Not much to look at, but SUPER delicious!

8 slices thick cut bacon cooked crispy and crumbled
4 cups shredded rotisserie chicken (or crock pot crack chicken)
2 cups dried egg noodles, cooked per directions on box and drained
1 package dry ranch dressing mix
1/2 cup onion, diced
1/2 cup red or orange pepper, diced
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese divided
1/2 cup Darigold Mexican sour cream
8 ounces cream cheese, softened (omit if using crock pot crack chicken)

1/3 cup Duke’s mayonnaise
1 1/2 cup corn chex, crushed
1/4 cup butter melted
2-3 green onions thinly sliced for garnish, optional

  • Preheat the oven to 350°.
  • Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish with cooking spray, set aside.
  • In a large bowl combine the bacon, chicken, cooked noodles, ranch seasoning, onion, red pepper, cream cheese, 1 cup of the cheddar, sour cream and mayonnaise until well blended.
  • Spread into the baking dish.
  • Top with the remaining cheddar.
  • In a small bowl mix together the corn chex with the butter and top the casserole with this mixture.
  • Bake for 40-50 minutes until bubbly.
  • Let cool slightly, garnish with optional green onions and serve.

2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or tenders
1 package ranch dressing package mix
8 ounces cream cheese
1 cup shredded cheddar or cheese flavor of choice – Nacho, sharp, Vampire Slayer, etc…

  • Add chicken to crock pot in a single layer if possible.
  • Sprinkle with ranch dressing powder.
  • Place cream cheese block as a whole on top.
  • Cover and cook on low 6-7 hours.
  • Remove cover and shred chicken while stirring in cream cheese at the same time.
  • Add cheese and stir to mix.
  • Serve on buns, croissants, tortillas, in the above casserole or use it to make tacos next Taco Tuesday!


1 + 2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon WONDRA flour
1 tablespoon avocado oil
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

4 pieces prosciutto
1-2 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
1/2 cup FRESH small green peas
1 teaspoon red chile flakes, crushed
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 LARGE lemon, juiced
2 cups penne pasta
1/4 cup FRESH chopped Italian Leaf parsley
2 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup FINELY shredded Parmesan cheese

  • Bring a pot of salted water to a rolling boil.
  • Add pasta cook al dente, 9-11 minutes.
  • Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of pasta water.
  • In a large skillet add a drizzle of oil over medium high heat. Add prosciutto slices in a single layer, cooking 2-3 minutes per side until crispy. Do not clean pan.
  • Drain on paper toweling.
  • Pat chicken dry and generously season with FRESH ground sea salt, black pepper and crushed red chile flakes.
  • Add butter to skillet.
  • When melted add garlic sauteing 30 seconds.
  • Add chicken steaks sauteing 2-3 minutes per side until cooked through.
  • Transfer chicken to cutting board.
  • Whisk flour into drippings.
  • Add cream cheese and heavy cream to skillet, whisking to combine.
  • Adjust seasoning to taste.
  • Add lemon juice and parsley, stirring to blend.
  • Add pasta and peas, folding in to coat, cooking a couple minutes until warmed through.
  • Slice chicken breasts into strips.
  • Plate pasta.
  • Top with chicken slices, prosciutto and Parmesan cheese.

TASTE: Creamy and full of rich flavor.
TEXTURE: Al dente noodles and crispy chicken in a creamy sauce are the star of this meal.
EASE: Easy to Moderate.
APPEARANCE: Appetizing and visually appealing.
PROS: Great meal for company.
CONS: None that I found!


1 bunch green onions or 1 large shallot, thinly sliced
1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 pound sweet Italian sausage
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups vodka pasta sauce, homemade or jarred – your choice
3 cups homemade beef stock
12 ounces penne pasta
1/4 cup chopped marinated sun-dried tomato pieces
1/2-3/4 cup quartered marinated mozzarella balls
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

  • Coat 12 inch non-stick skillet with non-stick cooking spray. I like to use my heavy enameled cast iron crock pot skillet.
  • Heat over medium-high heat.
  • Add beef, sweet Italian sausage, most of the green onions (save some for garnish), FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper to taste, cooking 8-10 minutes and breaking up the meat into small crumbles until meat is cooked through.
  • Add garlic and stir 30 seconds until fragrant.
  • Drain the meat and discard the grease.
  • Add 1/2 cup of the sauce and water to skillet. Bring to boil.
  • Add pasta and red pepper flakes.
  • Cover 10-12 minutes and cook JUST until tender.
  • Stir in meat and remaining sauce, cooking a couple minutes to heat through.
  • Gently fold in Mozzarella ball pieces.
  • Top with scallions and serve immediately.


Turn your favorite party dip into a hearty casserole meal that will satisfy EVERYONE!


3 cups chicken rotisserie chicken **
2 shallots, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound fusilli pasta, uncooked
1 jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained well and diced

12 ounce container spinach artichoke dip
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
16 ounces frozen baby spinach, THAWED & SQUEEZED DRY
3 cups homemade chicken stock
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Spray 13×9 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Mix together the artichoke dip, artichoke pieces, onions, garlic, spinach, chicken pieces and 1/2 cup of the cheese until well blended.
  • Add chicken stock and blend well.
  • Fold in pasta.
  • Cover with foil and bake 35-45 minutes, stirring a time or two.
  • Remove foil and sprinkle evenly with remaining mozzarella cheese and the Parmesan.
  • Bake 5-10 minutes more until cheese is melted and pasta is tender.
  • Let sit 5 minutes before serving.


  • You can make this more of a side dish by deleting the chicken pieces.
  • Another alternative is to season and grill the chicken first and then shred it. It adds another depth of flavor.