Saturday, October 25, 2014

#PumpkinWeek - Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins



Hi and welcome to day 6 and the end of #PumpkinWeek hosted by Terri from Love and Confections. We are celebrating our love of the season with a whole week of pumpkin goodies, leading up to National Pumpkin Day, which is tomorrow! 17 Food Bloggers have come together to share over 65 recipes with you. In addition to homemade pumpkin puree, pie, and cookies, we are also sharing savory pumpkin dishes like hummus, chili and pumpkin corn chowder. Check back over the past week of posts for all of the #PumpkinWeek recipes. You can also find these great recipes and more on Love and Confections' #PumpkinWeek Pinterest Board!

This post is a first for me - because I am typing it from Starbucks! Why? - not just because they make super yummy peppermint mochas and pumpkin bread (yes, I am eating pumpkin bread at Starbucks despite the past couple weeks of pumpkin baked goods that have been gracing my home!) I am here because I have no internet at home. Why do I have no internet at home? Because we are now the proud owner (GULP) of TWO homes and after closing on Friday morning we took a car and truck load of boxes to the new house and that included our big TV and most of the living room electronics to get internet / cable set up there. That included the wi-fi router. I wasn't thinking about that fact when I was planning to come home after our day of unpacking to our other house and get this post ready to go live for Saturday am! Oops.

Oh well - after our day it was kind of a nice excuse to get out of the house by myself, have some quiet time at Starbucks, and sip a nice cup of coffee while I worked on finishing this post! Thank you for joining us all for the past week of pumpkin goodies! I am sad the week is already over - I have LOVED the "excuse" to fill my kitchen with the scents of pumpkin goodies - from slow cooker butter to scones and cookies. They are all winners in my book and I am so glad I got to try them all out and add some new recipes to my fall baking repertoire!

Enjoy this final, delicious pumpkin recipe for the week - these are super tasty little bites. We all really enjoyed these for a breakfast treat and snack. My 13 month old liked these a lot - I saved some without the cinnamon sugar topping for her. And then my husband gave her two with the sugar topping. Sigh.

These are perfect bite sized treats, tender, flavorful, sweet, and lightly spiced. Like most of the pumpkin muffins I make, these were a little on the dense side in that they didn't rise much during baking and most had somewhat misshapen tops - not the perfectly rounded domes you often get on lighter batters. The batter was fairly thick, and I wondered if I'd thinned it some if they would have been a little on the lighter side. I may try that next time and see if it makes a difference. Regardless of their appearance, their taste and texture were very nice and I look forward to enjoying these again!


Check out all the #PumpkinWeek Bloggers and their recipes from today:
Pumpkin Pie Dip by Love and Confections
Pumpkin Pye - that's Pie with a Rye Crust by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Caramel Pumpkin Torte by Lady Behind The Curtain
Pumpkin Loaf by The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
Pumpkin Pie Martini by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Pumpkin Cheesecake Swirl Brownies by A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures
Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins by Making Miracles

Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffins from Sally's Baking Addiction

Ingredients

Mini Muffins
1 and 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 and 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1 and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
1/2 cup milk

Cinnamon Sugar Coating
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 cup white sugar
2 Tablespoons ground cinnamon

Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and prepare a mini muffin baking tray with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl combine the dry ingredients: flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice (I used Cinnamon Plus), and nutmeg. Whisk to combine.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer combine the melted butter, brown sugar, egg, vanilla, pumpkin puree, and milk, Blend well until smooth and combined.
  4. Slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet, stirring slowly and only mixing just until ingredients are combined.
  5. Spoon batter into prepared mini muffin pan, filling each well about 3/4 of the way full.
  6. Bake for 11 - 12 minutes, or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  7. Set muffins on a cooling rack to cool for about 10 - 15 minutes and prepare the cinnamon sugar topping by combining the 1/2 cup sugar with 2 TBS cinnamon in a pie plate or shallow bowl. When muffins have mostly cooled, but are still warm melt the 1/4 cup butter in another bowl. Dip the tops of the muffins in the melted butter and then roll gently in the cinnamon sugar.
  8. Only add the topping to the muffins you intend to eat that day, otherwise they can get soggy when stored.



Friday, October 24, 2014

#PumpkinWeek - Slow Cooker Pumpkin Butter




Hi and welcome to day 5 of #PumpkinWeek hosted by Terri from Love and Confections. We are celebrating our love of the season with a whole week of pumpkin goodies, leading up to National Pumpkin Day. 17 Food Bloggers have come together to share over 65 recipes with you. In addition to homemade pumpkin puree, pie, and cookies, we are also sharing savory pumpkin dishes like hummus, chili and pumpkin corn chowder. Come back every day for #PumpkinWeek recipes. You can also find these great recipes and more on Love and Confections' #PumpkinWeek Pinterest Board!

This is a ridiculously simple and perfectly delicious pumpkin butter recipe. I lived several of my childhood years in Pennsylvania and have fond memories of apple butter always gracing our condiment collection in the refrigerator but have never made any type of apple or pumpkin butter previously. There are MANY recipes and versions out there, but this one looked quick, simple, and I always love the chance to put my crock pot to good use - it's fun to find new ways to use it! This recipe is thick, creamy, and perfectly sweet and spiced. I LOVE the smell, texture, and taste, and it is a great accompaniment to fresh baked biscuits. My son was imagining it used as a frosting on some sort of pumpkin bread or cake - that's my boy!

I used Cinnamon Plus for the spices, but you can see the original recipe (linked below) for individual spices suggested and amounts - or use a pumpkin pie spice blend.


Check out all the #PumpkinWeek Bloggers and their recipes:
Pumpkin Pie Chia Granola by Love and Confections
Meatloaf-Stuffed Mini Pumpkins by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
White Chocolate Reeses Pumpkin Blondies by The Spiffy Cookie
Pumpkin and Corn Chowder by Curious Cuisiniere
Buttermilk Pumpkin Pancakes by Life Tastes Good
Pumpkin Spice Cookie Blossoms by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Curried Roasted Pumpkin Hummus by A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures
Praline Frosted Pumpkin Brownies by My Catholic Kitchen
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Butter by Making Miracles
Pumpkin Biscotti by The Pajama Chef
White Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cake by Dizzy Busy and Hungry


Slow Cooker Pumpkin Butter slightly adapted from Recipes That Crock

Ingredients
1 15-oz container pumpkin puree
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup light brown sugar

Directions
  1. Combine the ingredients in a crock pot and blend together.
  2. Set temperature to high and cook for 3 hours, stirring about every 30 - 45 minutes to prevent burning, and to help ensure even blending and cooking of the ingredients.



Thursday, October 23, 2014

#PumpkinWeek - Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies




Hello and welcome to day 4 #PumpkinWeek hosted by Terri from Love and Confections. We are celebrating our love of the season with a whole week of pumpkin goodies, leading up to National Pumpkin Day. 17 Food Bloggers have come together to share over 65 recipes with you. In addition to homemade pumpkin puree, pie, and cookies, we are also sharing savory pumpkin dishes like hummus, chili and pumpkin corn chowder. Come back every day this week for #PumpkinWeek recipes (and take a peek at the ones from earlier in the week too)! You can also find these great recipes and more on Love and Confections' #PumpkinWeek Pinterest Board!

These cookies are such a great fall treat - they are so soft and chewy, and have a great spiced flavor to them. My husband wasn't a big fan, but my son and daughter both loved these. I shouldn't be surprised though - both of my kids seem to be huge fans of anything with pumpkin in them. When Lindsey was first starting on solids we fed her quite a bit of pumpkin goodies - pumpkin blended with baked apples, and a pumpkin rice dish were staples for her. Now at 13 months old we've moved on to pumpkin baked goods, and she thinks they're good stuff! We limit her sweets, but I definitely let her have tastes of anything homemade I make and she knows what the word "cookie" means!

My son has already requested that I make these again - they made a nice small batch so they disappeared within about 2 days and Kent took some to school to share with his friends too. This is a great addition to the "pumpkin baked goods arsenal"! They are great warm with some vanilla ice cream for an extra decadent treat.


Check out all the #PumpkinWeek Bloggers and their recipes:
Pumpkin Tres Leches by Love and Confections
Spiced Pumpkin Butter by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Pumpkin Palmiers by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
Pumpkin Pecan Oatmeal by The Spiffy Cookie
Mini Healthy Pumpkin Pies by Happy Food Healthy Life
Easy Pumpkin Caramel Sauce by Lady Behind The Curtain
Savory Pumpkin Tart by The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
Pumpkin Custard Pie by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies by Making Miracles


Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies from Sally's Baking Addiction

Ingredients


1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter (room temperature)
1/4 cup light or dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 TBS pumpkin puree
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/2 teaspoons Cinnamon Plus (or pumpkin pie spice)
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer blend together the softened butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until creamy. Add in the vanilla and pumpkin puree and blend until smooth.
  3. In a separate large bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and Cinnamon Plus together and blend.
  4. Slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, just until combined. Add in the chocolate chips with a wooden spoon or spatula.
  5. Roll the dough into walnut sized balls and place on a parchment or silpat lined baking sheet (12 per sheet). 
  6. Bake for about 10 minutes, or until lightly browned on the bottom and mostly set. Allow cookies to rest on the baking sheets for 10 minutes before moving to a wire rack to finish cooling.


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

#PumpkinWeek - Cinnamon Pumpkin Bread


Hello again and welcome to day 3 of #PumpkinWeek hosted by Terri from Love and Confections. We are celebrating our love of the season with a whole week of pumpkin goodies, leading up to National Pumpkin Day! 17 Food Bloggers have come together to share over 65 recipes with you. In addition to homemade pumpkin puree, pie, and cookies, we are also sharing savory pumpkin dishes like hummus, chili, and pumpkin corn chowder. Come back every day for new and delicious #PumpkinWeek recipes. You can also find these great recipes and more on Love and Confections' #PumpkinWeek Pinterest Board!

I have a confession. This is not the recipe I originally intended to share. I wanted to make this one. However, I am in the midst of moving, and didn't get to that recipe this past weekend and last night I realized both the spices I needed and my bread loaf pans were already packed. So - I am sharing this one I made and photographed in January 2010 but never shared on my blog - that was back when I was primarily posting about my surrogacy adventures still!

With that said - excuse the poor and lonely photograph - but still try this bread! It is tender, flavorful, moist and a very yummy pumpkin bread. I've made it a few times and it always disappears fast around my house.

When I originally made this I made several modifications to the original recipe and found they worked very well - the bread is pretty easy to tweak if you want to make it healthier. I've included some of my modifications in the recipe posted below. I used half real sugar / half Splenda in my original version and the flavor and texture were still great, so if you prefer to bake with Splenda / Stevia it will work in this recipe.

I can assure you, your house will smell WONDERFUL while this is baking, and it will definitely feel like fall in your kitchen! This one is great warm, cool, with butter, for breakfast, as a snack or dessert (warm it up and top with some whipped cream or vanilla ice cream)! Yumm!



Check out all the #PumpkinWeek Bloggers and their recipes from today:
Pumpkin Pie Cream Cheese Truffles by Love and Confections
Pumpkin-Vanilla Bean Madeleines by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
White Chocolate Drizzled Pumpkin Scones by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
S'mores Pumpkin Pie by The Spiffy Cookie
Homemade Pumpkin Puree by Happy Food Healthy Life
Pumpkin Mole by Curious Cuisiniere
Drunken Pumpkin Seeds by Life Tastes Good
Pumpkin Roll by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Pumpkin Lasagna by My Catholic Kitchen
Cinnamon Pumpkin Bread by Making Miracles
Pumpkin Quinoa Oatmeal Bake by The Pajama Chef
Pumpkin Chocolate Swirl Pancakes by Dizzy Busy and Hungry

Cinnamon Pumpkin Bread adapted from on AllRecipes

Ingredients
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups white sugar (or half sugar / half sugar substitute such as Splenda or Stevia)
1 1/4 cup unsweetened apple sauce
3 eggs
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
1/2 cup water 

Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease two 9x5 inch loaf pans. Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and pumpkin pie spice. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together sugar, applesauce, eggs, and pumpkin. Stir in flour mixture alternately with water. Divide batter evenly between the prepared pans.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 60 to 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. For best flavor, store wrapped in plastic wrap at room temperature for a full day before serving.


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Last Weekend - In Pictures

This is a snapshot of this past weekend, getting ready for our big move this coming weekend. Closing is Friday and there is still so much to get done!


Lindsey was having a good time with the empty boxes!

An example of the craziness - boxes and "stuff" everywhere. Dining and living rooms.

Lindsey is having a great time with all of the empty cabinets in the bathroom to play in!

One of several truck and car loads of packed boxes / rubbermaids we've taken over to Kenneth's grandmother's temporarily. Kent has been SUCH a huge helper - so appreciative of my boy!

One of our big piles of boxes in Kenneth's grandmother's basement while we work on emptying out our house.

Getting anything done with a 13 month old is challenging - so finding ways to "confine" her and keep her safe and entertained are valuable. When she is happy and quiet, it's time to get something productive done - quickly!!

I let Lindsey play in the yard for awhile after we got all the boxes in the basement - she sure loves the leaves!

Sweet girl was ready for her "green juice", some dinner, and home!



#PumpkinWeek - Baked Pumpkin Donuts




Hello and welcome to day 2 of #PumpkinWeek hosted by Terri from Love and Confections! We are celebrating our love of the season with a full week of pumpkin goodies, leading up to National Pumpkin Day. 17 Food Bloggers have come together to share over 65 recipes with you. In addition to homemade pumpkin puree, pie, and cookies, we are also sharing savory pumpkin dishes like hummus, chili and pumpkin corn chowder. Come back every day for #PumpkinWeek recipes. You can also find these great recipes and more on Love and Confections' #PumpkinWeek Pinterest Board!

Today I am sharing these completely delicious, tender, and moist baked pumpkin donuts! I love baked donuts - they are so quick and easy, and totally quench that occasional donut craving without having to heat up any oil... that makes them healthy too, right?!

These are perfectly spiced and the texture was so good - so tender! As you can see below, my 13 month old thought they were pretty good stuff too! We enjoyed these as a fun weekend breakfast, and my son and husband fought over the leftover ones the next morning - recipe success!

My donut pans are currently packed away in a box somewhere, but I am looking forward to being reunited with them hopefully this weekend when we get settled in our new house. Hoping the unpacking will go fairly smoothly - fingers and toes are crossed!

Here are all the yummy #PumpkinWeek bloggers and their recipes from today:
Baked Pumpkin Donut Holes by Love and Confections
How to: Make Your Own Pumpkin Puree by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Slow Cooker Vegetarian Pumpkin Chili by The Spiffy Cookie
Pumpkin Ravioli with Tarragon by Curious Cuisiniere
Pumpkin Spice Instant Hot Chocolate Mix by Lady Behind The Curtain
Pumpkin Praline Pancakes by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Baked Pumpkin Donuts by Making Miracles



Baked Pumpkin Donuts from King Arthur Flour

Ingredients

Doughnuts
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups pumpkin purée (canned pumpkin)
1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice, or 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon plus heaping 1/4 teaspoon each ground nutmeg and ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 3/4 cups + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

For dusting
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon or pumpkin-pie spice

Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare two 6-donut pans with cooking spray.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the oil, eggs, sugar, pumpkin puree, spices, salt and baking powder and blend until smooth. Gently stir in the flour, just until combined.
  3. Divide the batter among the two donut pans, filling each well about 3/4 of the way full.
  4. Bake for 15 - 18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  5. Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes before gently moving donuts to a cooling rack (you can use a butter knife or small rubber spatula to help release them from the pan.
  6. Combine the 1/4 cup sugar and 1 tsp cinnamon in a large pie plate or Ziploc bag, and gently coat donuts in the sugar mixture while still warm, but wait until they have firmed up a little and aren't too fragile or they will crack and break.
  7. Serve warm or allow to cool.
  8. Only add the sugar coating to the ones you intend to eat that day, if you store them with the sugar coating they can get soggy.



Monday, October 20, 2014

#PumpkinWeek - Pumpkin Scones (Starbucks Copycat)



Welcome to #PumpkinWeek hosted by Terri from Love and Confections. We are celebrating our love of the season with a whole week of pumpkin goodies, leading up to National Pumpkin Day. 17 Food Bloggers have come together to share over 65 recipes with you. In addition to homemade pumpkin puree, pie, and cookies, we are also sharing savory pumpkin dishes like hummus, chili, and pumpkin corn chowder. Come back every day this week for #PumpkinWeek recipes. You can also find these great recipes and more on Love and Confections' #PumpkinWeek Pinterest Board!

For my #PumpkinWeek kick off recipe I am sharing these delicious, tender, and flavorful pumpkin scones! These smelled WONDERFUL when they were baking in the oven - the whole house smelled like fall. I also adore the color - pumpkin gives such a rich, warm, and inviting color to the items it is used in.

I used Cinnamon Plus in place of the called for spices in the original recipe - you can use pumpkin pie spice or see the original recipe for amounts / spices. I also used a small container of prepared icing that we had ready to use up so didn't make the glaze as recommended below, though we still have a couple scones left so I will make a smaller batch for those ones.

These are a wonderful fall treat - perfect for a chilly morning with a cup of your favorite coffee, or as a tasty snack in the afternoon (or heck, they would make a great dessert treat too!)

I absolutely love fall baking season, and these are a wonderful addition to our pumpkin baked goods line up - I know we will definitely be enjoying these again.

We are preparing to move next weekend, so these are also a nice, quick, portable breakfast for busy mornings like we've been having lately! This past weekend was a complete BLUR! We've gotten so much boxed up and moved over to Kenneth's grandmother's house as temporary storage, but there is still so much more to do. We're getting down to the "bigger" stuff though, so by the end of this week we should be in pretty good shape for renting a U-Haul and getting pretty much everything relocated between Friday and Sunday. Fingers crossed. My kitchen is down to bare bones, and I'm ready to have it back together and be able to cook and bake like normal again soon!

Pumpkin Scones (Starbucks Copycat) from Cooking Classy

Ingredients

Scone
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 3/4 tsp cinnamon plus
1/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
3 Tbsp granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold and diced into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup + 1 Tbsp canned pumpkin puree, chilled (do not chill in metal can, place in a tupperware or small bowl)
3 1/2 Tbsp buttermilk
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp half and half

Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
2 Tbsp half and half, then more as needed

Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon plus, brown sugar and granulated sugar. Whisk together to combine and then cut in the butter with a pastry cutter until mixture is well blended and resembles coarse crumbs.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer combine the chilled pumpkin puree, buttermilk, egg, vanilla and honey. Blend on medium to high speed until well combined and smooth.
  4. Create a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the wet mixture. Combine with a wooden spoon just until blended. 
  5. Lightly flour the counter and pour mixture out, knead a few times to bring the dough together and then pat into a circle about 3/4 inch thick.
  6. Use a floured knife to cut the circle into 8 wedges and gently place them on a parchment (or silpat) lined baking sheet.
  7. Brush the tops of the scones with the 1 TBS half and half.
  8. Bake in preheated oven for 13 - 15 minutes or until lightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Set on a cooling rack for 10 minutes while you prepare the glaze (you want to glaze them when they are still warm so it will soak in).
  9. Combine the powdered sugar with 2 TBS half and half - you want a fairly thick consistency. Add additional half and half to thin if necessary.
  10. When scones have mostly cooled, spread the glaze generously over each and allow it to set.


Check out all the #PumpkinWeek Bloggers and their recipes from today:
Pumpkin Loaf by Love and Confections
Lemongrass-Kissed Sankaya (Thai Pumpkin Custard) by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
Brown Butter Pumpkin Cupcakes with Biscoff Frosting by The Spiffy Cookie
Pumpkin Peach Smoothie by Happy Food Healthy Life
Egg and Pumpkin Breakfast Cups by Curious Cuisiniere
Witches Eye Glass Chocolate Pumpkin Cupcakes by Lady Behind The Curtain
Easy Homemade Pumpkin Puree by Life Tastes Good
Pumpkin Orange Soup by The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
Macaroni with Kale and Creamy Pumpkin Sauce by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Roasted Pumpkin and Chickpea Samosas by A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Butter by My Catholic Kitchen
Pumpkin Scones by Making Miracles
Chewy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies by The Pajama Chef
Pumpkin Molasses Cookies by That's My Home
Pumpkin Spice Overnight Oatmeal by Dizzy Busy and Hungry















Saturday, October 18, 2014

Johnsonville Sausage Creamy Pasta Casserole



One of our assignments this month for the AllRecipes AllStar Brand Ambassador program was to find a fall comfort food recipe and sub the main protein with Johnsonville Italian sausage - I went through AllRecipes.com and found a bunch of possible options, and presented a couple to my boys to pick from. Kenneth voted for this one because we had some extra pasta already cooked and in the refrigerator (I cooked too much pasta the other day for a different dish, so we just put the extra in a Ziploc and refrigerated it, pasta is always going to get used around here!) This is originally a Baked Spaghetti Casserole dish, but obviously it is no longer baked spaghetti if you use macaroni noodles, so I have adjusted the name - however you could, of course, use spaghetti noodles in this dish, and then subsequently call it whatever you want! :D It is a wonderful, creamy, comforting dish and we all loved it! The addition of the Italian sausage really gives this a great flavor boost - my son was cracking me up when we ate dinner (he ate a HUGE plate, and then ate the rest of mine too) - he said "Mom, I don't know what meat this is, but I need more of it!" Spoken like a true teenager. Speaking of - he will be 16 years old next month. Lord help me.

If you like your casserole dishes really creamy, I would suggest doubling the soup mixture and adding some over the first layer of pasta and meat in addition to the very top. I thought it was enough as written below, especially with the cheese and "juice" from the meat mixture / tomatoes, but I am sure I would have liked it extra creamy too - so adjust to your family's preferences.

I love casserole dishes like this - they are easy to work with and make your own, and served with a big Caesar salad and some incredibly addictive and delicious Italian pull bread this was a fantastic fall dinner at our house! We will definitely enjoy this one again.


Johnsonville Sausage Creamy Pasta Casserole adapted from LaDonna on AllRecipes

Ingredients
12 ounces elbow macaroni noodles
1 cup chopped onions
1 cup chopped green bell peppers
1 pound ground Johnsonville Italian Sausage
1 (16 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (4.5 ounce) can mushrooms, drained
1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
1 TBS minced garlic
2 tsp garlic powder
2 cups shredded mild Cheddar cheese
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta, and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until al dente. Drain, and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, saute the onions, green peppers and ground sausage. Once sausage is brown and onions and peppers softened, add the tomatoes, mushrooms, garlic powder, minced garlic, and Italian seasoning. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes (adjust seasonings to taste, if needed).
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish. Place half of the cooked pasta into the prepared dish. Top with half of the meat mixture. Sprinkle with 1 cup of the cheddar cheese. Repeat. 
  4. In a medium bowl, combine the cream of mushroom soup and water until smooth; pour over the top of the casserole. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.



DISCLAIMER: I am an Allrecipes Allstar brand ambassador (a voluntary position) and I am not compensated for my work with Allrecipes.com. Products received from advertisers are only used for experienced-based reviews on Making Miracles. The reviews, content and opinions expressed in this blog are purely the sole opinions of Rebekah. To learn more about the Allrecipes Allstars program visit Allrecipes Allstars.