Spicy Chicken & Pesto Panini


I wish I would take credit for this warm and delicious panini, but I sadly I can’t. Its my husbands creation and its a great one. We’ve been making this for years and its always been a crowd pleaser. Can be made quickly for a group of house guests or even a special lunch while you watch your favorite team during Sunday Football.

Spicy Chicken Pesto Panini | laureescraftycreations.com

I paired this with an IPA Beer and some potato chips.

We sure enjoy Sunday Football during nap time :)

Continue reading

Sausage & Pumpkin Barley Risotto


I love fall.

Lets be honest, its really the pumpkin flavored EVERYTHING that I’m really in love with…
Pumpkin Risotto | laureescraftycreations.com
I mean pumpkin spice in my coffee? Yes Please!
Pumpkin desserts? Of course!
I keep pumpkin on hand from October through January so I’m sure this will not be the last pumpkin recipe I share this season.

This dinner came to be because I had leftover pumpkin from some pancakes…[yummy] and a I had made version of this that I made earlier with Sweet Potatoes.

I think this one is even better than the last!
1 can of pumpkin
1 small white onion [finely chopped]
1 package of Italian Sausage
1 1/2 cups pearl barley
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 tbsp EVOO
1/2 Applesauce
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp ginger
1/3 cup chopped walnuts

1. Heat the EVOO in  a large skillet over medium.

2. Add your Italian Sausage and break into small pieces. Cook until sausages are browned and cooked through.

3. Add the onions and sauté until onions are softened.

4. Add garlic, rosemary, salt, pepper & Italian seasoning. Stir together for about a minute.

5. Add white wine, stir together for about a minute.

6. Add chicken stock and barley, bring to a boil, stirring often.

7. Simmer for about 30-40 minutes or until barley is soft, stirring often.

8. Remove lid and add pumpkin, applesauce, cinnamon, nutmeg & ginger

9.  Simmer a for about 3 minutes.

Salt to taste if needed.

Top with a chopped walnuts and enjoy!

My twin toddlers each ate a whole bowl of this!! Yay! They are so picky at this age I consider them my toughest critics.

This post was shared with: Monday Funday

Sweet Potato Barley Risotto with Italian Sausage


Every Wednesday my girl friend Kate and I get together for a play date. Our kids are two weeks apart and they love to play together. These play dates are great for us moms too; we get to watch the kids play and socialize… win/win.

Since we spend most of the day chatting away, I always find myself at 5 O’clock with no dinner plans, scrambling to throw something together. Not an ideal end to any day. Then Kate told me about this crock pot Barley Risotto, [hers is vegetarian] so I gave it a try and my family liked it…my husbands only critique was that he wanted it to have meat.

I came up with this recipe and it was a huge hit. Play date days are now slow cooker days too, no more stressing about dinner!

Continue reading

Patriotic Jello


I’ve seen lots of different ways to make Patriotic Jello, most of which call for a mixture of milk & Jello. I’m not a fan of a milky jello. It just sounds off to me. So I bought some Cool Whip and decided to make red & blue jello; then top it off with that deliciousness.

Patriotic Jello | laureescraftycreations.com

Score! Easy and festive treat.

Continue reading

Red, White, Bacon & Blue Potato Salad


Happy Monday Everyone! Hope you all had a great Father’s Day yesterday.

We spent the day with my family & my in-laws. I really enjoy spending time with the whole family, its always a good time. We had a BBQ and I was asked to bring the potato salad. I remembered a blue cheese potato salad that we’ve bought from a grocery store deli before and I knew I had to make a blue cheese potato salad of my own.

Potato Salad with red potatoes, blue cheese and BACON | laureescraftycreations.com

I call it the Red, White, Bacon & Blue Potato Salad. I know its a mouthful but it’s fun to say!

Here’s how you make it:

Continue reading

Hot Dog Cookies


These cookies are perfect for Fathers Day or even the upcoming 4th of July. They are a small and festive way to celebrate any BBQ!  I found this idea on A Taste of Home and I just couldn’t wait to make them!
Hot Dog Cookies | laureescraftycreations.com
The original post didn’t provide a lot of instruction so after making a large batch of cookies I think I got the method of shaping hot dogs down!
Here’s what you’ll need:

Continue reading

Roasted Ranch Cauliflower


Another week has started and can you believe we’re in June?
Its practically summer which means fun in the sun and birthdays… I can’t wait!!
Roasted Ranch Cauliflower | laureescraftycreations.com

I found a recipe for homemade Ranch Seasoning a few weeks ago and I can’t stop using it! I guess I have a serious Ranch addiction but its not that bad for you so I’m OK with it! :)
Recently I’ve been topping my roasted vegetables with the Ranch Seasoning and its just delicious.
Here’s how I made my Roasted Ranch Cauliflower.
Ranch Seasoning from Slender Kitchen [you’ll have a good amount left over to keep using]

Continue reading