Cheesy Beef Panini

Cheesy Beef Panini - roast beef, melty cheese, onions, peppers, and garlic toasted in a toasted panini sandwich

We have added a new member to our family.

Now before you start thinking we have a new baby or puppy, let me set you straight. We bought a panini press. And it has been love at first use. Honestly, I think someone has made a sandwich on it every day for the past week. My oldest even told me he was kidnapping the machine when the time comes for him to move out.  I think it is safe to say this new purchase is going to get lots of use in the next few years.

Another thing I’m thinking is thank goodness for a machine that is so easy to use that our kids can make their own lunches this summer.

Cheesy Beef Panini - roast beef, melty cheese, onions, peppers, and garlic toasted in a toasted panini sandwich

And hooray for easy to use products from Mezzetta to jazz up those summer sandwiches. They were wonderful enough to send me some jars of product to get our sandwich making started. These products are also available in the condiments aisle of your local grocery store.

I decided to start with some roast beef and add some peppers and onions. As I looked at the jars on my counter, I stopped on the Savory Garlic. This spread is a blend of olive oil, parmesan cheese, and garlic. It was the perfect thing to spread on the outside of my bread before putting the sandwich in the panini press. If you do not have a panini press available, you can use a griddle or a pan on the stove to grill it to perfection.

Cheesy Beef Panini - roast beef, melty cheese, onions, peppers, and garlic toasted in a toasted panini sandwich

Look at all that goodness inside the sandwich. Who can turn down a sandwich loaded with meat, melty cheese, peppers, and garlic?

Cheesy Beef Panini - roast beef, melty cheese, onions, peppers, and garlic toasted in a toasted panini sandwich

I think it’s time to get my sandwich love on again for lunch and dinner today. My family shouldn’t have a problem with that…I hope. At least it’s better than cold cereal for dinner.

Mezzetta Banner

Now for some fun in the kitchen. Mezzetta is hosting a “Make That Sandwich” contest. Do you have a sandwich idea that could win? The grand prize winner will come home with $25,000 and two runners up will receive $1,000. You need to include at least two Mezzetta products in your original creation. Contest details are available here. Now get in the kitchen and start creating sandwich fun. I would love to say one of my readers won this contest.

Cheesy Beef Panini

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 2 sandwiches

Cheesy Beef Panini

A delicious blend of roast beef, cheese, peppers, onion, and garlic in a toasted sandwich.


4 slices thick oat bread
6 slices deli roast beef
4 slices smoked Gouda cheese
2 teaspoons Mezzetta Savory Garlic Spread
1/4 cup Mezzetta Roasted Bell Pepper Strips & Caramelized Onions


  1. Spread the outside of the bread slices with the Savory Garlic spread. Place a slice of bread spread side down. Top it with 3 slices roast beef, 2 slices cheese, and 1/2 the peppers and onions. Place another piece of bread on top, spread side up. Repeat with remaining ingredients.
  2. Place sandwiches on a panini press or griddle that has been preheated to medium high heat. Cook for a few minutes or until the bread is golden brown and the cheese has melted. Cut in half or quarters and serve. Makes 2 sandwiches.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Mezzetta. The opinions and text are all mine.

Tomato Basil Beef Pasta

Tomatoes and basil give this easy beef pasta a delicious flavor.  It is the perfect 20 minute meal you can enjoy any day of the week.

Tomato Basil Beef Pasta - cherry tomatoes, basil, and beef makes this pasta dinner a delicious meal in under 30 minutes
The answer is yes.

What?  You weren’t going to ask if I was officially obsessed with making pasta dinners?

Well, I will just admit it now before you start wondering.  I am officially and totally in love with creating new pasta dinners.

Tomato Basil Beef Pasta - cherry tomatoes, basil, and beef makes this pasta dinner a delicious meal in under 30 minutes

The idea for this pasta came from a magazine I was reading at my son’s orthodontist appointment.  Now here’s the problem.  I have absolutely no idea what magazine it was.  All I remember is there was a dinner with pan roasted tomatoes and basil.

And the dr.’s office is an hour away, so I can’t just pop in one day to see if that magazine is still sitting there.  Even if I could…I don’t remember what the front cover looked like.  So, let’s just pretend I came up with this entire meal by myself :-)

Ok, fine.  Let’s just talk about something I do remember.  And that is just how good this pasta was.

This “sauce” for this dish comes from sautéing the tomatoes and basil in olive oil.  Then toss it with already cooked pasta and cooked beef fajita meat.  You can buy the meat at Sam’s Club, but any pre cooked beef fajita mix from any store would work.  Sprinkle the warm pasta with some shredded parmesan cheese before serving.

A dinner that is easy, delicious, and ready in 20 minutes.  Perfect for those busy (or lazy) days of summer

Tomato Basil Beef Pasta - cherry tomatoes, basil, and beef makes this pasta dinner a delicious meal in under 30 minutes

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Tomato Basil Beef Pasta

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 6-8 servings

Tomato Basil Beef Pasta

Tomatoes and basil sauted in olive oil creates a delicious and light dressing for pasta and beef. This dinner can be ready in about 20 minutes.


2 1/4 cups frozen, precooked beef fajitas meat (I buy a 24 ounce bag from Sam's Club)
12 ounces pasta
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
2 ounces fresh basil leaves, chopped
6 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
salt and pepper
shredded parmesan cheese


  1. Saute the meat in 1 Tablespoon oil over low-medium heat until heated all the way through. Remove from the heat, cover, and set aside.
  2. Cook the pasta according to the al dente package directions. Drain and toss with 4 Tablespoons olive oil. Cover and set aside.
  3. Heat 1 Tablespoon oil up. Add the tomatoes and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the chopped basil and cook for 1-2 more minutes. Stir the meat and tomatoes into the pasta. Stir and season with salt and pepper. Serve with shredded parmesan cheese. Makes 6-8 servings.

 More pasta recipes that get rave reviews in our house:

Chicken Sausage Pasta Bake 5

 Chicken Sausage Pasta

Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta Bake 3
Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta Bake

Pizza Pasta Salad title

Pizza Pasta Salad

Chicken Sausage Pasta Bake

Looking for a pasta dinner to make in under 40 minutes?  This Chicken Sausage Pasta Bake is full of meat, veggies, and ooey, gooey cheese.

Chicken Sausage Pasta Bake - meat and pasta topped with lots of ooey, gooey cheese for a comfort food dinner Do you ever lose time in stores?

If I go into Target, it will be a good hour before I come out…and that’s a quick trip.  Seriously, I think they put something in the air vents to keep you looking at all the cute stuff.

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Loaded Chicken Alfredo Gnocchi Bake

Chicken Alfredo meets loaded baked potato in this delicious Loaded Chicken Alfredo Gnocchi Bake.  Full of flavor and easy to have on your table for dinner tonight.

Loaded Chicken Alfredo Gnocchi Bake - an amazing and delicious combination of chicken alfredo, cheese, and bacon

 Remember that time I told you how I didn’t like to make dinner?

Hhhhmmmm!  Yeah, I might have changed my mind on that.  Lately, I have been filling my food lists with some delicious sounding savory dishes.  Very slowly I am working my way through that list.

I still prefer baking up a storm, but this dinner thing isn’t so bad after all.  [Read more...]

Chicken Supreme Pasta Bake

This easy, cheesy pasta bake comes together in no time when you combine the toppings from a chicken supreme pizza with pasta and cheese.  This Chicken Supreme Pasta Bake is definitely comfort food to the max.

Chicken Supreme Pasta Bake - easy and very cheesy chicken and pasta dinner that everyone will love

My goal to start making more dinners is going pretty well.  I have been trying to experiment more with savory foods along with all the sweets each week.

So far, so good.  I have this one and one other dish ready to share with you.  Both meals were given thumbs up by my little taste testers.
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Broccoli Cheese Soup

Getting your servings of dairy is a little bit easier when you eat Broccoli Cheese Soup for dinner.  Serve it with a fun bread bowl for something different at dinner.

Broccoli Cheese Soup - a creamy soup loaded with bits of broccoli and carrots in a cheese broth

Can I just tell you that I have the coolest job ever?  It might seem a little strange to you.  I mean I do start busting out the pumpkin in early August, start on the peppermint by October, and then I’m ready for coconut in January.

Oh, and I get to go visit cow farms and see how cheese is made.  Definitely a strange job!  But I seriously love every minute of it.

A few weeks ago I joined a team from the American Dairy Association Mideast in Cleveland, Ohio for a whirlwind trip of farms, food, and fun.  The first night we had dinner at The Lakehouse Inn & Winery on Geneva-on-the-Lake where we learned how to pair the right wine with different cheeses from Marianne Frantz, the founder of American Wine School.

I hope you are ready for some pictures…you are going on the virtual tour with me now.   [Read more...]

Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole

Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole

I know you are used to seeing lots of sugar treats here, but today we are going to take a look at one of my favorite lunch meals.  My husband makes this Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole for us to eat throughout the week.

He usually eats this for breakfast and I will usually have it for lunch.    The egg casserole is not something new.  I love it because you can change it up with different vegetables each time.  Now because I’m the one making all the sugar, and my husband is the one making the dinners, I had to ask him for the ingredients.  My husband kind of laughed at me and said he bakes by feeling.  He just throws in what he wants and doesn’t measure.  So the other day I had him make this with me,  and I measured the ingredients for this Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole.  He said I was cramping his style by making him measure :-)

Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole, low fat breakfast, healthy meal choice, egg casserole

 For this particular egg casserole we used red onion, mushrooms, broccoli, a can of tomatoes, and a bag of sharp Sargento cheese.   We like to use a food processor to chop the vegetables.  It will cut down on your prep time by quite a bit.  We have the Ninja and I love it.  It is perfect for finely dicing your ingredients in a very short amount of time.   Whisk your eggs, stir in the vegetables, and pour in a baking dish.  It doesn’t get much easier than that.  One bowl to clean and no mixer.  You need easy recipes like this every once in a while.

Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole

Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole, healthy meal choice, egg casserole, low fat meals

This Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole is so delicious.  The best thing about this casserole is that it reheats well.  I usually reheat a square in the microwave for lunch.  It is a nice meal to make up and have in your refrigerator for the week.

Eating a healthy lunch means I can have that brownie or cookie in the afternoon.  Oh wait!  That isn’t how healthy eating is supposed to work!


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*This post is sponsored by Sargento® , all opinions are my own.

Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 12 servings

Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole

This Broccoli and Cheese Egg Casserole is a great low fat breakfast or dinner option. It is full of flavor and protein.


1/2 cup red onion, finely chopped
1 cup mushrooms, finely diced
1 1/2 cups broccoli, finely chopped
1 can diced tomatoes, drained (14 1/2 oz.)
12 eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 cups sharp shredded cheese (Sargento)


  1. Crack the eggs into a large bowl. Whisk. Stir in all the chopped vegetables, tomatoes, salt, pepper, and cheese. Pour into a greased 9x13 dish. Bake at 350* for 45 minutes.
  2. Cool on a wire rack. Refrigerate. Serves 12.


Shared with: Weekend Potluck, One Creative Weekend,