Creamy Garlic Spinach and Shrimp Pasta

This simple and elegant pasta dish can be on the table in less than 30 minutes.  It’s full of creamy luxuriousness and has a deep flavor.   Trying to keep this dish a bit lighter I added 2% milk instead of full fat cream.  I added some nutritional value and color with the addition of spinach.  This not only adds flavor, color but a wonderful texture as well.

creamy garlic spinach and shrimp pasta

The punch of garlic and parmesan cheese are a must.  I wouldn’t suggest adding to much salt and pepper in the beginning of making this dish.  Let the ingredients mingle and then test, adding more seasoning if needed.

creamy shrimp and spinach pasta www.petitfoodie

If you are looking for an elegant dish that is fool proof to impress your next dinner guests this is the one for your.

shrimp and spinach pasta

Creamy Garlic Spinach and Shrimp Pasta
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4
  • ¾ lb fettuccini
  • ¾ lb shrimp,cleaned
  • ½ C fresh spinach
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 T butter
  • 2 T Flour
  • 1 C 2% milk
  • ½ C Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper.
  • ½ C pasta water
  1. Bring large pot of salted water to boil, add in pasta and cook according to package directions.
  2. Reserve ½ C pasta water.
  3. In a medium saute pan heat olive oil.
  4. Add in garlic and suate until tender and fragrant.
  5. Add in shrimp and cook until pink, about 5 min.
  6. After shrimp cooks for 3 minutes add in spinach until wilted.
  7. Set aside.
  8. In medium pan melt butter.
  9. Whisk in flour to form a paste.
  10. Slowly whisk in milk.
  11. Add in parmesan.
  12. Season sauce with salt and pepper.
  13. If the sauce is too thick slowly pour in reserved pasta water.
  14. In a large pasta bowl combine pasta, sauce and shrimp mixture.
  15. Adjust salt and pepper seasoning, if needed.
  16. Garnish with more parmesan, if desired.


My Favorite Noodle Bowl

Noodle bowls have become increasingly popular.  They make for a delicious quick and easy meal.  I love the versatility of them.  You can throw anything you desire or have on hand in them.  The creative possibilities are endless.  Best of all, noodle bowls are totally inexpensive.

Noodle Bowl Petitfoodie

I love how simple this version is of the noodle bowl.  There are some pretty wild and fancy recipes out there but this one is no fuss.  Full of all the goodness you crave when you think of a noodle bowl.  It has the components of ramen, fresh vegetables and a light sauce to coat it all.  It’s not overly greasy or salty.

Noodle Bowls


Noodle Bowls

If you are craving a good noodle bowl give this one a try.  It will be your new go to 20-minute meal and be sure to add veggies you love to the mix.

noodle bowls

My Favorite Noodle Bowl
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 2
  • 1 pkg ramen noodles, noodles only
  • 1 C cabbage, chopped,
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • ½ C mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 T green pepper, chopped
  • 2 T garlic olive oil
  • Sauce
  • 3 T soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ⅛ C reserved water
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
  1. In a medium sauce pan bring salted water to a bowl and cook ramen noodles until tender. Reserve ⅛ C water and drain the noodles.
  2. In a sauté pan heat garlic olive oil.
  3. Sauté mushrooms for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add in cabbage, carrot, green pepper.
  5. Sauté until all veggies are tender.
  6. In a small bowl whisk together soy sauce, sugar, red pepper flakes, reserved water, salt and pepper.
  7. Add noodles and sauce to the sauté pan.
  8. Toss until noodles are evenly coated with veggies and sauce.


Swiss Chard & Mushroom Calzones

I love wondering around my grocery store.  I always find so many fun ingredients to play with.  Lately though, my usual grocer has been pretty dull.  So I switched things up and went to a new store last week.  I was so surprised to find some seriously stunning Swiss chard leaves.  The vibrancy of their stalks had me swooning all over myself.  They were so full of life and gorgeousness.  I grabbed the biggest bunch I could find.

swiss chard mushroom calozones

I came home and sautéd a big batch of balsamic Swiss chard and mushrooms.  Half of the batch went into these delicious calzones and the other half I enjoyed all week long over wild rice.

calzones II

These calzones are full of the most delicious ingredients.  Ricotta and mozzarella perfectly add a creamy texture to the Swiss chard and mushroom mixture.  It also tones down the prominent balsamic flavor.  I wrapped them up in the perfect Pizza Crust.  If you do not have any garlic oil just add one clove of minced garlic to the olive oil and saute until tender before adding the Swiss chard and mushrooms.


I could quite possibly eat these every day and die happily.

Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 6 calzones
  • 1 pizza dough recipe
  • ½ c ricotta
  • ½ t Italian seasoning
  • ½ C mozzarella cheese
  • 2 Swiss chard leaves, stems removed and chopped
  • ½ C mushrooms, cleaned and chopped
  • 2 t garlic olive oil
  • 1 t balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Combine ricotta and Italian seasoning in a small bowl and set aside.
  2. In a small sauté pan heat olive oil. Add in Swiss chard and mushrooms. Sauté until tender.
  3. Season with salt and pepper. Slowly drizzle in balsamic vinegar.
  4. Remove from heat and let cool.
  5. Preheat oven to 425*
  6. Roll dough out on floured surface and divide into six large squares.
  7. Fill each square with 1 T ricotta, a spoonful of the Swiss chard mixture and a sprinkle of mozzarella cheese. Don’t overfill the calzones too much.
  8. Fold dough over and seal the edges pressing them together tightly.
  9. Place on parchment lined baking sheet.
  10. Brush lightly with olive oil and place in oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
  11. Enjoy plain or with marinara sauce.


Hibiscus Tea and Gin Cocktail

This refreshing cocktail is sure to brighten your Valentine’s Day.  These cocktails are light and full of exotic flavor.

hibiscus tea and gin cocktails petitfoodie

The sweet lemon simple syrup adds a xylophone of depth.  The hibiscus tea takes you to your favorite warm tropical destination.  The distinct gin flavor adds warmth and complexity to this one of a kind cocktail.

hibiscus tea and gin cocktails

Treat the one you love on Valentine’s Day with this hibiscus tea and gin cocktail.

hibiscus cocktail

Hibiscus Tea and Gin Cocktail
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 2
  • Lemon simple syrup
  • ½ C water
  • ½ C granulated sugar
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • Cocktail
  • ¼ C lemon simple syrup
  • 3 oz gin
  • Hibiscus tea
  • Ice
  • Lemon slice
  1. Bring water and sugar to a boil in a small sauce pan.
  2. Reduce to simmer and add lemon juice.
  3. Once sugar is dissolved remove from heat to cool.
  4. In two cocktail glasses add 1.5 ounces of gin to each.
  5. Pour in ⅛ C lemon simple syrup in each glass.
  6. Top off the glasses with hibiscus tea and garnish with ice and lemon slices.


Must Read Books In 2015

Over Christmas break I finally got to catch up on some leisurely reading.  These books were some of my favorites.  You must read these in 2015 if you have not yet.

must reads in 2015

It was me all along – I loved every word in this book.  Andie is such an inspiration.  If you read one book this year make sure it is this one.

One Thousand Gifts – This book is beautifully written.  Now I know why it was so wildly popular.  It truly makes you so grateful for everything.

What I know for sure- I never wanted this book to end.  It was so fun to read.  There were parts that were lighthearted, carefree, sad, hilarious and serious.  It was a great book to start the New Year reading.

Invention of Wings- Anything by Sue Monk Kidd is sure to make my must read list.  A wonderful novel.




I received  It was Me all Along from Crown Publishing to review.  I was not compensated for any of the other books.

Lemon Sugar Cookies with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting

These cookies are light and refreshing with a hit of richness.  The lemon adds a wonderful flavor to this classic sugar cookie recipe.  Don’t you dare leave out the lemon zest.  The little flakes of lemon zest adds flavor and vibrant yellow flakes that sprinkle throughout the cookies.  Strawberry cream cheese frosting is the way to go.  The strawberry jam adds a beautiful light pink hue.

lemon Sugar cookies strawberry icing petitfoodie

These cookies are the perfect touch for Valentine’s Day.  Ava took a few of these cookies last week in her lunch and came home saying all her friends were dying to have one.  She had to sneak bites by the end of the week because everyone wanted her share.

lemon sugar cookies

I guess I know what her class will be getting for their Valentine’s Day party.  :)

lemon sugar cookies strawberry frosting

Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 1.5 dozen
  • 1 C butter, softened
  • ¾ C granulated Sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 3 C flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • {frosting}
  • 4 T cream cheese, softened
  • 3 T butter, softened
  • 2 T strawberry jam, room temperature
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 ½ C powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350*.
  2. In a large bowl beat together butter and sugar until creamed.
  3. Add in egg , lemon and lemon zest and beat until combine.
  4. Slowly add in baking powder, salt and add flour 1 C at time until combine.
  5. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and place in fridge for 20 minutes.
  6. On a well floured surface roll dough out and cut desired shapes out and place on the cookie sheet.
  7. Bake for 8-10 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile beat together cream cheese, butter, strawberry jam, powdered sugar and salt.
  9. Frost cooled cookies and top with sprinkles.


Chicken Spinach Salad

Need a delicious salad to brighten up your winter days?  This vibrant spinach salad is not only super healthy but so filling and delicious.

chicken spinach salad

I haven’t always been a spinach fan.  It’s something that I have taught myself to like.  The texture used to really put me off.  But the more times I tried the better I liked it.  I hear so many people say I don’t like this vegetable or that vegetable.  I cringe every time I hear it.  Sometimes you just have to teach your taste buds to like new vegetables.  Just like you teach your children sometimes you have to teach yourself to keep trying and soon you will grow to enjoy vegetables that are loaded with nutrients and give you variety.

chicken spinach salad

I love this salad because its full of a variety of textures and tastes.  The cabbage is important because it adds a great crunch and balances out the sweetness of the apple, tomatoes and red pepper.

chkn spinach salad petitfoodie

Use your favorite balsamic vinaigrette to top this salad off.  My mom sent me this luscious balsamic vinegar from Branch & Vine that I pair with a rich olive oil.  It’s so simple, sweet and adds the perfect touch to this salad.

Chicken Spinach Salad
Prep time
Total time
Serves: 2 salads
  • 2 C spinach
  • 1 C roasted chicken
  • ½ C cabbage
  • ½ whole apple, sliced
  • 2 T pecans, chopped
  • 2 T tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 T red pepper, chopped
  • 4 T balsamic vinaigrette
  1. In two salad bowls add 1 C spinach, ½ c roasted chicken, ¼ C cabbage, ¼ apple, 1 T pecans, 1 T tomatoes, 1 T red pepper.
  2. Top each bowl with 2 T balsamic vinaigrette.


Quinoa Granola

Yogurt and granola has always been my go to breakfast.  It is fast, portable and always keeps me full until lunch.

quinoa granola

There are a million varieties of granola out there.  But this one happens to be one of my favorites, a close second to this Coconut Lime Granola.  I love that the oats and quinoa are coated with this luscious blanket of honey and peanut butter.  It’s hearty and so delicious.

Store-bought granolas can be convenient.  But the tiff I have with them is that they are very expensive and way too sweet for my liking.  I adore making my own granolas because I can control the sweetness and I like to choose the ad-ins.  The possibilities are endless and you can use whatever you have on hand.  Affordable and tasty-just the way I like it.

quinoa granola

If you’ve got a hectic week planned I highly suggest you make this quinoa granola to keep you going.

Quinoa Granola
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 3 Cups
  • ¼ C honey
  • 3 T maple syrup
  • ⅓ C chunky peanut butter
  • ¼ C coconut oil
  • 1 C pecans, chopped
  • 1 C craisins
  • 2 C oats
  • ¼ C uncooked red quinoa
  • 2 T ground flax meal
  • Pinch of salt
  1. Preheat oven 350*. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a small sauce combine honey, maple syrup, coconut oil and peanut butter over low heat.
  3. Stir until smooth.
  4. In a medium bowl combine oats, pecans, craisins, quinoa, flax meal and salt.
  5. Once wet mixture is smooth pour into the dry mixture.
  6. Stir until evenly coated.
  7. Pour oat mixture onto the cookie sheet and press firmly down until mixture is evenly spread out.
  8. Bake 20 minutes. Stirring and checking every 5 minutes. Watch closely as granola will burn easily.
  9. Remove from oven and let cool. Break up granola and place in resealable bag or container.


Lemon Blueberry Bread

I started the year off with a delicious and moist lemon blueberry bread.  This is one of those go-to classic recipes.  A solid recipe that can be used for any occasion and you probably have most of the ingredients on hand.

lemon blueberry bread

The colors of the lemon and blueberries that make this bread so vibrant have me longing for spring already.


If you are looking for a way to get your kiddos loving blueberries this refreshing lemon blueberry bread is sure to reel them in.  The sweet lemon glaze on top adds a thin crunchy crust and sweetness to get the taste buds percolating.

lemon blueberry bread ii

This is one recipe that will have a permanent place in your recipe box.

Lemon Blueberry Bread
  • ⅓ C coconut oil, melted
  • ¾ C sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1 ½ C flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 C blueberries
  • ½ C milk
  • Glaze
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 3 T lemon Juice
  • ½ C powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Line loaf pan with parchment paper.
  2. In medium bowl beat together coconut oil, sugar, eggs and lemon juice.
  3. In spate bowl combine flour, baking powdering and salt.
  4. Slowly add in ½ flour mixture to wet mixture.
  5. Add in ¼ C milk and combine.
  6. Add in remaining flour mixture and milk.
  7. Beat until just combine.
  8. Fold in blueberries.
  9. Pour mixture into loaf pan.
  10. Bake 1 hour.
  11. Remove from oven.
  12. Whisk together zest, lemon juice and powdered sugar.
  13. Pour glaze over cooled loaf.


Cranberry Orange Cinnamon Rolls

These Cranberry Orange Cinnamon Rolls are a must to start the New Year.  Bursting with tangy and sweet flavor they are sure to liven up your New Year’s morning.

cranberry orange cinnamon buns

The gorgeous pop of red cranberries rolled up tightly in a warm sweet bread and covered with a decadent cream cheese frosting.  Both kids and grown-up go wild for these sweet rolls.

Petitfoodie Cran Orange rolls

If you are looking to revamp your classic cinnamon roll this is the recipe that you need.  The tanginess of the cranberries takes these sweet rolls to the next level.  The sweet creamy blanket of frosting brings all the flavors together and sends you swooning over these cranberries orange cinnamon rolls.  Honestly, I’m not sure we can go back to the same old classic cinnamon rolls for a while.

cran orange rolls


Cranberry Orange Cinnamon Rolls
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 10 rolls
  • 1 C warm milk
  • 1 pkg rapid rise yeast
  • ⅓ C sugar
  • ½ t salt
  • Zest of one orange
  • 1 egg
  • ⅓ C canola oil
  • 4 ¼ C flour
  • (filling)
  • ¼ C butter, softened
  • ½ C brown sugar
  • ½ C sugar
  • 1 ½ T cinnamon
  • 1 ½ C fresh cranberries
  • ¼ C orange juice
  • (frosting)
  • 2 oz cream cheese
  • 3 T butter, softened
  • 1 T orange juice
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 ¼ C powdered sugar
  1. Combine milk, yeast and sprinkle of sugar in a large bowl. Let sit for 5 minutes to proof.
  2. Add in egg, oil, salt, sugar.
  3. Slowly add in 1 cup of flour at a time.
  4. On the last cup use your hands and knead the dough until a smooth ball forms.
  5. Place in a warm area covered with a clean tea towel for one hour.
  6. Meanwhile, in a small sauce pan add cranberries and ¼ C orange juice. Bring to a simmer and remove from heat as soon as the cranberries start to pop.
  7. Once dough has risen slightly roll out on a well floured surface to be 18x24 inches.
  8. Spread softened butter on dough, sprinkle on sugars and even spread out the cooled cranberries.
  9. Roll dough tightly.
  10. Cut into 1 ½ inch rolls.
  11. Place on a well greased baking sheet.
  12. Let sit in warm area for 30 mins.
  13. Preheat oven to 350.
  14. Bake rolls for 20-25 minutes.
  15. While rolls are baking mix together cream cheese, butter.
  16. Add in orange juice and pinch of salt.
  17. Slowly mix in powdered sugar ½ C at a time.
  18. Remove rolls from oven and let cool.
  19. Once cooled spread cream cheese frosting on top.


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