Homestyle Lasagna

This lasagna tastes like authentic lasagna but is easy to make. Ok, as authentic as an American who has never tasted true Italian lasagna can make. It’s American yummy.


Brown in skillet together:
1 pound Italian sausage
1 clove garlic minced (approx 1 teaspoon)
1 Tablespoon sweet basil, dried

Combine in food processor:
3 cups cottage cheese
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
2 Tablespoons parsley flakes
2 eggs
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Additional ingredients needed:
2 large cans/jars spaghetti sauce
1 can diced Italian tomatoes or tomato sauce
1 box lasagna noodles (no need to pre-cook)
1 pound mozzarella cheese

Layer sauce, lasagna noodles, cheese filling, and mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers. Refrigerate or bake. Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes if all ingredients are hot. If refrigerated, bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour covered. Let stand 5-10 minutes before serving.

Stuffed Mushroom Bake

My family devours this Stuffed Mushroom Bake. I prefer the vegan version. Either way, this recipe will satisfy your cravings!


1  8oz package sliced mushrooms
4 oz cream cheese, softened (vegan: use Tofutti vegan cream cheese)
1/4 cup butter, melted (vegan: use Smart Balance vegan margarine)
2 Tablespoons real bacon bits (vegan: use imitation bacon bits)
1 Tablespoon Parmesan cheese (vegan: use Galaxy Foods vegan Parmesan cheese or omit)
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded (vegan: use Go Veggie Cheddar Shreds)
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded (vegan: use Go Veggie Mozzarella Shreds)

Place all in 8″ x 8″ glass dish in order listed. Top with 1 cup bread crumbs mixed with 1/4 cup melted butter (vegan: use Smart Balance vegan margarine.)

There are other vegan alternatives but the options listed are the ones that I like the best. Feel free to substitute whatever brand you like. 🙂

Bake at 350 degrees for 15- 20 minutes or until golden brown on top.

Italian Cheese Chicken Roll Ups

Italian Cheese Chicken Roll Ups are a good Italian alternative to spaghetti – in case you could possibly get tired of spaghetti. As if.


2 oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup Italian cheese blend, shredded
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/4″ thickness
2 cups spaghetti sauce

Combine cream cheese, shredded cheese, spices and garlic salt. Shape into 4 logs. Roll chicken around logs and place in 9″ x 13″ dish, seam side down. Pour spaghetti sauce evenly over chicken. Cover dish with foil and bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Remove foil and sprinkle with additional shredded cheese. Bake 3-5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Serves 4.

Chocolate Chip Cheese Ball

Chocolate Chip Cheese Ball is wonderful for chocolate lovers! Especially served with chocolate graham crackers. Mmmmm …….


8 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup powdered sugar
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
3/4 cup mini chocolate chips

Blend together cream cheese, butter, and vanilla. Fold in sugars. Add chocolate chips.


Chicken Enchiladas

Chicken Enchiladas are easy and quick to make. They are milder than regular enchiladas and kids seem to like them.


1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can mushrooms, pieces and stems
2 cans chicken, white meat
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or less to taste
1 cup sour cream
2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded

Combine all ingredients and evenly divide onto 8 tortillas. Place tortillas seam side down in lightly greased 9″ x 13″ pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Chocolate Dipped Oreo Balls

These are highly addictive and loaded with sugar – just saying 🙂


1 package of Oreo cookies
8 oz package of cream cheese, softened
2 16oz bags milk chocolate chips or white chips, melted

Crush Oreos super fine. Mix with cream cheese. Roll into bite-size balls. Dip into melted chocolate and place on waxed or parchment paper until set. Store in refrigerator, if they make it that far 🙂

p.s. Don’t feed these to children unless you don’t want them to eat anything else today. LOL

Pistachio Dessert aka “Layered Green Stuff”

This is a huge hit every year at our Thanksgiving and Christmas parties.

This can be made vegan with substitutions. I’m not saying it’s healthy, just vegan . . . 🙂


1 cup flour
1/2 cup chopped nuts, your choice – I use walnuts
1/2 cup melted margarine or butter
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
2 cups Cool Whip
1 package pistachio instant pudding
1 package vanilla instant pudding
3 cups cold milk

Mix flour, nuts, and margarine. Press into 9″ x 13″ pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 15 minutes. Cool.

Mix cream cheese, powdered sugar, and 1 cup Cool Whip. Spread over crust.

Mix pudding mixes and milk together. Let stand for 5 minutes until somewhat set up. Spread over cream cheese mixture. Spread remaining Cool Whip on top. Chill until ready to serve.

Best Pizza Dough – Really!

This is the best pizza dough I have ever had. A bread maker makes this recipe super easy!


1 cup warm beer (yes, beer. See note below)*
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 Tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2  3/4 cups flour
1 Tablespoon yeast, not rapid rising

Place all ingredients in bread maker in order listed. Use dough setting and approximately 1 1/2 lb setting. Once dough is ready, place in refrigerator and let rise until double.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Press dough into 2 lightly greased 12″ pizza pans. Brush lightly with oil. Add toppings and bake 15 – 25 minutes or until bottom of crust is crispy and edges lightly browned.

* I can’t stand the smell of beer, let alone the taste. However, the alcohol evaporates and leaves a nice “yeasty” flavor. Give it a try 🙂

Pumpkin Dip

This Pumpkin Dip is great served with mini graham crackers 🙂


3  8oz packages of cream cheese, softened
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
scant 1/8 teaspoon cloves or less
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
8oz Cool Whip, thawed

Beat cream cheese and powdered sugar together until well blended. Stir in all remaining ingredients, then gently fold in Cool Whip.

Yield: 2 1/2 cups.

Holiday Cheese Ball

This Holiday Cheese Ball is a favorite at Christmas! Serve with a variety of crackers and/or vegetables.


2  8oz packages of cream cheese
4 oz dried beef, diced (find in the lunchmeat section)
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Combine all using heavy duty mixer. Form into ball, roll in chopped pecans if you like. Wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least 8 hours before serving.