It’s the season of summer barbecues, al fresco family get-togethers, and asking “what can I bring?” when you’re invited to summer soirees. I have a patriotic (and delicious) dessert idea that will hopefully be the answer to that question for all of your warm-weather gatherings: a no-bake cheesecake tart topped with a bounty of fresh, seasonal mixed berries. Here is why this tasty treat is such a winner — no turning on the oven! The whole thing gets made in a few short steps, starting with a crumbly graham cracker crumb crust. A few quick pulses in the food processor and pressing it into the tart pan is all you need to do to get the base of this dessert ready. Then get your electric mixer to do the heavy-lifting on the next step — whip heavy cream with sugar, vanilla, cream cheese and mascarpone for a fluffy and sweet filling that gets poured into the tart crust. Then you chill the whole thing until you’re ready to serve it, and garnish it with colorful sweet berries. Easy, tasty, and it looks like a million bucks! Get the full recipe below:  read more

Please note: This post was created in collaboration with Chase Freedom Unlimited. All opinions, images and content are my own.

It’s been a few weeks since I kicked off my “be a better baker challenge” in collaboration with my friends at Chase Freedom Unlimited, and I’m due for a check-in on my progress! When starting any new goal, I always find the hardest part is just that: getting started! I tend to get caught up in planning and researching and prepping, but kickstarting a goal always works best with action, which means I have to get in the kitchen and get baking! read more

If there’s one thing you probably know about me, it’s that I love a grazing board. Putting together these themed boards has become one of my favorite seasonal entertaining ideas, I love tweaking them to fit different events and holidays. With the 4th of July coming up this week, summer entertaining is top of mind; I wanted to create a summer grazing board that was fit for warm-weather hosting!  read more

I had to share this one last detail from my sister’s bridal shower last weekend because it was one of the tastiest things I’ve ever made! We had a local Italian restaurant cater the party since my sister is a big fan of pasta (go follow her @agirlandherpasta instagram account!). We decided to tackle a few salads to go along with the pasta and chicken dishes we ordered — one bridesmaid brought a beautiful caesar salad, and I was in charge of caprese salad. My motto for this event was go big, or go home and I brought that mantra to every detail (she’s my little sis and BFF after all!), including the caprese salad.

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I love making crostini for easy entertaining appetizers. It’s such a simple dish but is always a crowd favorite, and a versatile one that you can adapt to use tons of different types of ingredients. I shared a few varieties of these seasonally inspired crostini in my entertaining cookbook, New England Invite. read more

Living close to the beach in New England, we get our fair share of summer visitors that swing in for a visit. After a day out in the sun, the last thing I want to do is run back out to the store for snack-rations. This recipe is one of my easy-entertaining tricks that I keep in my back-pocket for one last-minute guests pop by. It’s made out of ingredients that I almost always have in my fridge (like Hood Cottage Cheese) and freezer (like frozen filo pastry cups).

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We all seem to be in the same boat – whether we’re rushing home from a long day of work or juggling the toddler-witching hour – dinner can be a struggle! I have a handful of extra-speedy, low effort weeknight dinners that I keep in my back pocket for busy weeks. Sometimes they’re almost so simple that I forget to write them down and share them here, but those are the ones that people always end up loving the most. One of my staple ingredients that I always grab at the grocery store to have on hand are packages of al fresco Fully Cooked Chicken Sausage. read more

Gearing up for Memorial Day weekend, the official kick-off to summer bbq season! I can’t wait to pop open the grill to cook up some burgers and hot dogs; the classics are always on my menu. One thing I do like to mix up is my side salads, and I have a round up of 10 of my favorite BBQ side salads from over the years — including a few new ones that I just added this week. Scroll down for all your holiday weekend cook-out menu inspiration! read more

Inspiration for my recipes comes from so places. I love flipping through magazines and cookbooks, perusing restaurant menus, and rethinking flavors from my childhood. The inspiration for this Grapefruit Ginger Fizz cocktail recipe though, came from a totally unique place – a perfume! I was at a book signing at a fun pop-up last week and had a few minutes to shop around the store as we wrapped up the event. I’m normally not much of a perfume person, but my eye caught a Grapefruit Ginger scent by a local company called Farm+Sea and I had to give it a try. It smelled delicious, and as I was rolling it on I commented that I loved it as a perfume but I bet I’d love it even more as a cocktail. I bought the perfume, and mixed up a batch of these Grapefruit Ginger Fizz cocktails when I got home! They taste as good as I now smell, get the recipe below. (PS: I found these amazing coupes at H&M for a steal, I love how delicate they look!) read more

Let me tell you all of the reasons I love a good antipasto salad, there’s quite a few! To start, it’s a great dish to make ahead. It’s one of those side dishes that almost always tastes better after the flavors hang out together in the fridge overnight. Another reason I love it is that it’s pretty easy to tweak and adapt to your guests preferences — leave out the salami for vegetarians, skip the cheese if someone is dairy free, and it works as a gluten-free dish too. We have a few carb-etarians in our family, so I’ll often add in some cooked cheese tortellini to make sure they’re getting enough pasta in their diet, wink wink. It also makes great leftovers after a party too; you can toss all of the ingredients over some mixed greens for lunch the next day or use the combination to make a flavorful pizza for a quick weeknight dinner. It’s a fool-proof side dish and one that I love to serve up for summer entertaining. Get the details on how I make mine below:  read more