Home for the Holidays: Pasta e Fagioli Soup & Cookies and Cream Brownie Cheesecake Bars with Patricia Wolf

Dec 18, 2017 by

Baking, decorating, family…all the things that fill the holidays with joy. Join our Entangled authors as they share a little something special from their home during the holidays.

One of my favorite things to do during the Christmas season is bake. I also love to make soups and stews—it’s the perfect time of the year to add a little sweet to a warm meal.

I have been in love with Italian chili since I tried Olive Garden’s Pasta e Fagioli Soup. I had to find a recipe so I could make it at home and have it taste just as yummy. I did! And the best part is that the soup cooks in a crockpot. Here’s what you’ll need:


2 cans diced tomatoes

2 cans tomato sauce

1 can Dark Red Kidney Beans

1 can Great Northern Beans

Celery – 5 individual stalks sliced

Small bag of Matchstick Carrots

48 ounce bottle of V8 Juice – Use ½ – ¾ of the bottle (depending on how hearty you’d like the soup)

1 tablespoon Basil

1 tablespoon Oregano

1 pound of lean ground beef

1 teaspoon of salt

1 teaspoon of pepper

1 box of Ditalini pasta


Brown ground beef and add all ingredients into crockpot. Turn crockpot on low for 6-8 hours or high or 4-5 hours. Cook the desired amount of pasta just before serving.


Now for the sweet treat after the warm meal, try these yummy Cookies and Cream Brownie Cheesecake Bars – They’re amazing. This was a recipe I stumbled across in hopes of finding something my young daughter and I could do together. Baking is such a wonderful way to spend time together. This recipe was easy to follow and a ton of fun for both of us. Plus it’s yummalicious!


1 box brownie mix

24 ounces of cream cheese – softened

¾ cup sugar

2 eggs – beaten

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

36 Oreo cookies


  • Preheat oven 325 degrees and grease 9 x 13 baking pan.
  • Prepare brownie mix as instructed on packaging.
  • In separate bowl, mix together softened cream cheese and sugar until there are no lumps.
  • Add egg and vanilla – blend well.
  • Pour brownie batter in baking pan evenly.
  • Place 24 Oreo’s in a single layer on top of brown batter. Fill in edges with broken cookies.
  • Pour cream cheesecake batter over cookies and spread evenly.
  • Crush remaining cookies and sprinkle on top of cheesecake batter.
  • Bake 45 minutes or until center is slightly jiggly.
  • Cook and chill for 2 hours.
  • Enjoy!

Merry Christmas and Happy Eating!

While that’s baking check out Christmas With a Bite by Patricia Wolf

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