Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Pumpkin Spice Trifle

Video Courtesy of

I shot this cooking segment for KSL showing how to make it last December.

I made this for Thanksgiving this year, and my brother has already requested that I make it again for Christmas this year.  I thought I would share the recipe.

Pumpkin Spice Trifle
from 101 Things To Do With Pudding

•1 cup pumpkin puree
•1/2 cup water
•1/2 cup applesauce
•3 eggs
•1 spice cake mix
•3 small boxes instant vanilla or cheesecake pudding mix
•2 1/2 cups cold milk
•1 container (8 ounces) frozen whipped topping, thawed
•1 cup chopped pecans
•1 cup English toffee bits

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, beat pumpkin puree, water, applesauce, and eggs until smooth. Gradually stir in cake mix and 1 box dry pudding mix. Spread batter into a 9 x 13-inch pan prepared with nonstick spray. Bake for 40-45 minutes. Allow cake to cool completely.
In a separate bowl, beat remaining dry pudding mix and milk together for 1-2 minutes until smooth. Chill for 5 minutes. Fold whipped topping into pudding until well blended.

Crumble one-third of the cake in the bottom of a large glass bowl. Spoon one-third of the cake in the bottom of a large glass bowl. Spoon one-third of the pudding topping evenly over cake layer. Sprinkle with one-third of the pecans and one-third of the toffee bits. Repeat all layers two more times. Refrigerate before and after serving. Makes 16 servings

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

101 Things To Do With Meatballs featured on Fox 5 in San Diego


I filmed this segment while we were in San Diego, and it aired on Monday.

Amazon is quick to ship and offers FREE shipping on any order over $25! You can also "Click to Look Inside" on most of my book titles and check out the table of contents!

Each book is spiral bound and includes wipe-able covers.

101 More Things to Do with a Cake Mix
101 More Things to do with a Cake Mix $9.99

What could possibly top the New York Times best-selling cookbook 101 Things to Do With a Cake Mix by Stephanie Ashcraft? Why, more delicious cake mix recipes of course! In 101 More Things to Do with a Cake Mix! Stephanie Ashcraft has done it again, serving up more lovin' for every busy dessert-lover's oven. 101 More Things to Do with A Cake Mix includes simple and delicious recipes-all using cake mix as a main ingredient.

101 Things to Do with a Slow Cooker

101 Things to Do with a Slow Cooker $9.99

Call it a slow cooker, a crockery cooker, or your best friend, the popularity of these handy machines has exploded recently, and "Mrs. 101" Stephanie Ashcraft has stepped up to the plate (or bowl, or serving tray) with an amazing collection of timesaving recipes. From South of the Border Pot Roast to Hearty Vegetable Soup to Cherries Jubilee, now anyone can make hearty, healthy dishes for the whole family the "throw-n-go" way-simply throw several ingredients into the slow cooker, get on with life, and come home to a kitchen filled with the aroma of real home cooking. 101 recipes for main courses, side dishes, desserts, and more are included, along with suggestions for how and what to serve with each dish, time-saving meal preparation tips, and easy modifications to fit your families tastes.

101 More Things to Do with a Slow Cooker
101 More Things to do with a Slow Cooker $9.99

With the continuing slow cooker craze, 101 More Things to do With a Slow Cooker. With two new sections-Vegetarian Delights and Turkey-this book will be flying of the shelves. More great recipes like Raspberry Chocolate Carmel Fondue, Southwestern Chili, Cajun Chicken Pasta, Mandarin Orange Steaks, Apple Cranberry Pork Chops, and Gooey Cherry Chocolate Cake will make your mouth water just by reading the ingredients. So throw a few ingredients in the slow cooker and go have fun with your family and friends-when you're done, your meal will be too!

101 Things to Do with a Tortilla
101 Things to Do with a Tortilla $9.99

101 Things to Do with a Tortilla takes this delicious and nutritious staple of so many countries and brings it into the mainstream with family-friendly recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and more. Tortillas are a no-fail recipe ingredient, and Stephanie Ashcraft and Donna Kelly show that tortillas aren't just for Mexican food anymore!

101 Things to Do with Salad: One Hundred One Things to Do With a  
101 Things to do with Salad $9.95

Everybody knows that a good salad makes a meal complete and now with this new addition to the 101 line, a salad is never more than a few ingredients away! The book includes Leafy Salads, Main Course Salads, Pasta Salads, BBQ and Picnic Salads, Veggie Salads, Fruit Salads, and Dessert Salads, with an amazing variety of recipes and flavors to suit all occasions. Try Sweet Fiesta Salad, Chinese Chicken Salad, Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad, Cauliflower Shrimp Salad, Cool Pear Salad, Pistachio Salad, and Best Ever Frog-Eye Salad!

101 Things to Do with a Potato

101 Things to Do With a Potato $9.99

One potato, two potato, three potato-four! Introducing the next book in our thriving 101 series, 101 Things to do With a Potato. Each year, the average American consumes close to 140 pounds of potatoes. With that in mind, nothing seems better than a cookbook featuring one of America's major food staples-the potato! "Mrs. 101" Stephanie Ashcraft has ingeniously created simple recipes that take potatoes to a whole new level. Try a Breakfast Burrito in the morning, sample the Sausage Corn Chowder for lunch, have the Italian Potato Chips as a mid-afternoon snack, for dinner try the Potato Crust Pizza, and then savor the Sweet Potato Cheesecake for dessert!

101 Things to Do with Chicken
101 Things to do with Chicken $9.95

101 Things to Do with Chicken is a must have for the busy kitchen. Try delicious recipes such as: Blue Cheese Chicken Dip, Curried Chicken Salad, Grandma's Chicken Noodle Soup, Zesty Chicken Burgers, Cranberry Chicken Spinach Wraps, Garlic Lover's Roast Chicken, Balsamic Chicken Stacks, Mediterranean Chicken, Asian Lettuce Wraps, and Chicken Alfredo Pizza.
The average American eats over 80 pounds of chicken each year.

101 Things to Do with a Casserole
101 Things to Do with a Casserole $9.95

Call it a one-pot, a casserole, or a hot dish, no one can deny the convenience and satisfaction these traditional meals provide! Whether you've had a late night at work, or have limited ingredients and finicky kids, the mighty casserole is the answer to the grumbling in everyone's tummy.

101 Things to Do with Canned Soup
101 Things to Do with Canned Soup $9.95

From creamy varieties to everyone's favorite (tomato, of course!), find 101 new uses for the most popular staple in your cupboard. Easy favorites are simplified with canned soup shortcuts: Classic Tuna Casserole, World's Best-Baked Beans, Chile Verde Enchiladas, and Southwest Black Bean Chili, plus try creative new recipes for Souper Tamale Pie, Upside Down Pizza Casserole, Tomato Soup Cake, Potato Chive Biscuits, and Chocolate Zucchini Cake!

101 Things to Do with Chocolate
101 Things to Do with Chocolate $9.99

Satisfy all of your chocolate cravings in 101 different ways with the newest addition to the 101 series, 101 Things To Do With Chocolate. Try easy recipes such as Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake Bars, Decadent Chocolate Truffles, Chocolate Mint Layer Brownies, and Chocolate Pudding-Filled Doughnuts to give you that needed fix. With sections such as Dessert Pizzas and Ice Cream Cakes, you'll find new and delicious ways to enjoy chocolate in addition to all the old favorites.

101 Things to Do with Ground Beef
101 Things to Do with Ground Beef $9.99

Everybody knows that meat loaf is the ultimate comfort food, but what else can you do with that easy-to-use, affordable, nutritious freezer staple? Here are 101 easy and delicious recipes to make the most out of ground chuck, hamburger, and turkeyburger.

101 Things to Do with a Cake Mix
101 Things to Do with a Cake Mix $9.99
(My book that actually hit the New York Times Best Seller's List!)

Move over Betty Crocker--101 Things to Do With a Cake Mix will amaze your friends and leave them Jell-O green with envy! From Snickers Surprise Cookies to Christmas Rainbow Poke Cake, it's the best thing to happen in the kitchen since your last romantic rendezvous! So what are you waiting for? Grab a cake mix, whip up some goodies, and throw some flour on your face so it looks like you spent days in the kitchen.

101 Things to Do with Meatballs $9.99

101 THINGS TO DO WITH MEATBALLS ON TOP OF SPAGHETTI, and a whole lot more! In the newest addition to the 101 series, 101 Things to Do with Meatballs is filled with recipes that will become instant favorites among family and friends. Some of the tasty dishes include Breakfast Burritos, Meatball Sliders, Thai Pizza, Feta Meatballs with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce, Tortellini Meatball Stew, Chinese Beef Noodle Soup, Piping Hot Buffalo Subs, Enchilada Meatballs, Chipotle Meatball Pasta, Savory Meatball Lasagna, Tater Tot Kid's Casserole, and Meatball Stroganoff.

101 Things to Do with Pudding $9.99

There's so much more to pudding than just a dollop of whipped cream on top! This all-time favorite treat gets a makeover with 101 Things to Do with Pudding. Now you can try some amazingly luscious, moist, and inventive recipes Such as Sticky Buns, Banana Cream Cookie Salad, No-Bake Butterscotch Oatmeal Cookies, Triple Chocolate Brownies, Cream Cheese Chocolate Nut Pie, Red Velvet Cake, Pumpkin Spice Trifle, and a whole lot more!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Heavenly Coconut Delight

Today I made the Heavenly Coconut Delight on Good Things Utah. My grandma called this Lush. She would make it in several different flavors- chocolate, banana, pistachio, coconut, butterscotch, etc..

Here's the recipe:

Heavenly Coconut Delight- from 101 Things To Do With Pudding

1 cup flour
2 TBSP sugar
½ cup butter or margarine
½ cup chopped cashews or almonds
8 oz pkg cream cheese, softened
¼ cup sugar
2 TBSP milk
12 oz pkg frozen whipped topping
2 pkgs instant coconut cream pudding mix
3 cups milk
½ coconut, toasted

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

In a bowl, combine flour and 2 tablespoons sugar. Cut butter into flour mixture using a pastry blender. Add nuts and continue to work the dough with the pastry blender. Spread mixture in a 9 x 13-inch pan prepared with nonstick spray. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Allow crust to cool completely.

Using an electric mixer, combine cream cheese, 1/4 cup sugar, and 2 tablespoons milk. Fold in 1 cup whipped topping. Spread the cream mixture evenly over the crust.

In a separate bowl, whisk the dry pudding mix into 3 cups milk for about 1 minute, or until pudding begins to thicken. Spread pudding evenly over cream cheese mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 3-4 hours. Before serving, spread remaining whipped topping evenly over the top. Sprinkle toasted coconut over top. Store in refrigerator. Makes 15 servings.

VARIATION: Chocolate, banana, lemon and butterscotch pudding mixes can be substituted for the coconut cream pudding.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Heavenly Southwest Black Beans

I made salsa today and was trying to figure out something I could do with my leftover cilantro and onion.  I came up with the following recipe, and it was SO good that I thought I would share.

Heavenly Southwest Black Beans

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions, diced
6 cloves garlic, chopped
1 can (15 ounce) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (8 ounce) tomato sauce
1 can (10 ounce) diced tomatoes with green chilies, with liquid
2 teaspoons ground cumin
3/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup chopped green onion

In a large skillet, heat olive oil.  Add onions and garlic and sauté for 5 to 7 minutes  stirring occasionally.  Stir in the black beans, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes with chilies, and cumin.  Simmer over medium low for 5 minutes.  Stir in 3/4 cup cilantro and simmer another 2 minutes.  Stir in green onion and remove from heat.  Garnish with extra cilantro, if desired.  Makes 4-6 servings.  Serve with tortilla chips or on warmed tortillas.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Healthy Kids Summer Fanfare

We are counting the days until summer vacation in our house.  This summer I am focusing on finding creative ways to encourage healthy eating in our household. My kids and I need to be eating more fruits and vegetables.

Here are a few of the ideas and/or recipes that I plan to use for lunches this summer to sneak more vegetables and fruits into my kids diets:

1.  Cucumber Canapé from 101 Things to do with Rotisserie Chicken by Madge Baird is at the top of the list.

1/2 cup minced rotisserie chicken
2 scallions, minced to make 1 tablespoon
1/4 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes
3 tablespoons light mayonnaise
1/4 teaspoon horseradish
pinch garlic powder
2 cucumbers

Mix all ingredients except cucumbers until well blended.  Peel cucumbers and slice into 24 thick rounds (at least 1/4 inch thick).  Spoon 1 teaspoon chicken mixture onto each cucumber slice.  Serve cold.  Makes 24 canapés.

2.  Mango Fruit Salad, Melon Delight Salad, and Almond Cran-Apple Salad from 101 Things to do with Salad are all healthy fruit dishes I plan to make this summer for my kids.

3.  Hummus Dipped Veggies and Whole Wheat Crackers is a summer poolside favorite lunch for my friend Jen and her family.  Whole wheat crackers (they like TLC brand) and veggies such as baby carrots and sliced cucumbers are dipped in hummus.  Wash it down with ice cold water with lemon and lime wedges and all fruit popsicles.

4.  Cracker Stackers are a favorite for my friend, Kendra, for late summer when gardens are producing. She purchases the multigrain Club crackers and cuts up all kinds of veggies (snap peas, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, etc) and cheese slices to stack on the crackers.

5.  Whole Wheat Stuffed Pitas have to be one of my favorite summertime treats.  Pitas can be stuffeded with tomatoes, lettuce, and tuna or chicken salad.

Here's to healthy eating this summer!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Bread Machine: Hearty Pizza Crust and Dinner Rolls

This week I was playing with recipes that I could do on the dough cycle of my bread machine. I topped the pizza with the leftover Byron's Pulled Pork we had in the refrigerator and with shredded Gouda cheese. I would have added thinly sliced red onion except my kids wouldn't have eaten it. The pizza was a huge hit.

Hearty Pizza Crust

7/8 cup warm water
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup wheat flour
1 cup white all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons white sugar
2 teaspoons active dry yeast

Layer the ingredients in the bread maker pan in the order listed. Set bread maker for dough setting and start machine. At the end of the time, press dough onto a greased 12-inch pizza pan or jelly roll pan. Allow crust to rise for 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Bake crust for 8 minutes. Remove crust from oven and top with your favorite pizza toppings. Bake an additional 8-12 minutes.

Bread Machine Dinner Rolls
1 cup warm water
2 tablespoons butter
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon salt
3 1/4 cups bread flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons active dry or bread machine yeast

Layer ingredients in the bread maker pan in the order listed. Set bread maker for dough setting and start machine. When finished, divide dough into 12 equally sized balls and place them in a greased 12 count muffin pan. Cover with plastic wrap and allow rolls to raise for 30-50 minutes until double in size.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 17-20 minutes until golden brown on top. Rub extra butter over top rolls while still hot. Makes 12 large dinner rolls.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Entertaining for March Madness on A Budget

Big Game, super cheap
The Big Game Entertaining Tips

I've been busy sharing ideas on how to entertain this March Madness using my cookbook, 101 Things To Do With Meatballs! I wanted to share some of the tips that I have been sharing.

1. Simplify. With a handful of ingredients and little time involved, you can feed a crowd. If you know how many people are coming, visit Enter in the number of guest, and it will help you know how much food you need.

2. Plan the menu. Club Entertaining also provides recipes on the website that you can use for the big game. 101 Things to Do with Meatballs along with my other 13 cookbooks offer simple recipes for appetizers, desserts, and more!

3. Don't spend a fortune! I buy the Casa di Bertacchi meatballs that come in the 6 pound bags at Sam's Club for only $11.98. That's less than $2 per pound. They are made with 100% whole boneless beef and steamed and seared. They come fully cooked which means that in no time at all and with a handful of ingredients you can make something delicious! I also like to use the Byron's Pulled Pork that you can also find at Sam's Club to feed a crowd. One tray will make 30 sandwiches and costs only $11.98. That's $ .40 per sandwich! I love to make BBQ pizza with it as well.

Easy Meatball Nachos


  • 16 Casa Di Bertacchi fully cooked meatballs, thawed
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 envelope taco seasoning
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) sliced stewed tomatoes, with liquid
  • 1 can (15 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 bag (10 ounces or larger) tortilla chips, any variety
  • grated cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
  • sour cream, optional


  1. Cut meatballs into quarters. In a large frying pan, saute the onion and bell pepper in oil over medium high heat until tender.
  2. Stir in meatballs and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in taco seasoning, tomatoes, and beans.
  3. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally and breaking apart tomato chunks.
  4. Spoon meat mixture over individual servings of tortilla chips. Sprinkle cheese over top and garnish with sour cream.

Makes 8-10 servings.

Variation: Meat filling can also be served burrito style in warm flour tortillas.

FYI-I'm on CRN radio at 8:20 a.m. Pacific Time today

Mike  Horn and Paul Stern

I'm a scheduled guest today on CRN radio's

What's Cookin' Today with Mike and Paul.

You can stream it online here. I'll be on from 8:20-8:30 a.m. AZ and Pacific Standard Time. 9:20 Mountain Standard Time. 11:20 Eastern Time.

Friday, March 12, 2010

3/11 My March Madness Entertaining Media Day

This has to be my favorite picture from the trip!

Do you ever wake up thinking, "Did I dream that or did it really happen?" Well, that is exactly what I thought this morning as I got up and got my kiddos ready to take to school. I would still be wondering if the last 2 days happened if I hadn't downloaded all the pictures as proof.

Wednesday, I flew to Charlotte, North Carolina. It was an enjoyable trip despite the 2 delayed planes and arriving 2 hours later than planned. I can't stand to pay more than necessary so I rented the cheapest rental car I could find in Charlotte which was still expensive! After all I just needed it to drive to the hotel, television shoot, and back to the airport the next day. I go to turn on the rental car and the engine light pops on with the wording that one of the tires is low. I unload everything and took the keys back. The lady looks at me and says she's going to make my day. She gave me the keys to a brand new Mustang convertible to drive! My husband and son were jealous.

Lauren Hopkins and Libbie Summers

Thursday I got up at 5 a.m. ET (3 a.m. Tucson time) and was at the kitchen set at 6 a.m.. Lauren Hopkins, the publicist from the Butin Group, and Libbie Summers, Paula Deen's food editor and head food stylist, were already there hard at work getting everything ready for the big production.

Emily McCarty and Marty Snider came in from the satellite truck to brief me on the schedule. You might recognize Marty from his reporting on Nascar. Then, the hair and makeup lady arrived around 6:30 a.m. to get me ready. The hair and makeup artist did hair and makeup for Deborah Norville (from Inside Edition) for 3 years in New York and for ACCESS Holleywood in LA. She did a fabulous job.

Before I knew it, we were off and running doing radio interviews and television interviews until about 11: 45 a.m.. I felt really good about the whole day. Libbie helping made it possible for me to concentrate on the actual interviewing and removed the stress of making sure the food was perfectly arranged and ready. It was such a fun surreal day!

I returned the car and flew home. I'm happy to be home again with my family, back to potty training, and driving my mini-van which allows me to actually see above the cars in front of me. If they ask me to do it again, I'd love it. For now, I'll enjoy my quiet life in Tucson and all it has to offer!

Click here to see one of the interviews I did yesterday with Cleveland's WKYC.

You can find all the recipes we used and tips for entertaining for March Madness on

Click here for information on my 14 cookbooks.

More pictures from the trip:

I was able to see my friend, Jessie, while I was there. She came to see the tail end of the shooting and we were able to go out to lunch afterward. We grew up together and I hadn't been able to see her in years! It was fun to catch up.