christmas, December, dinner, family, holidays, home, sponsored, Thanksgiving, walmart, wine

A Winning Recipe For Holiday Entertaining

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #HolidayPairings #CollectiveBias The following content is intended for readers who are 21 or older.

Wine and music are two of my favorite things. My very favorite thing to do is go to concerts. One band we (usually) never miss when they are in town is the Dave Matthews Band. So a couple of years ago when I found out Dave Matthews had a wine label (Dreaming Tree Wines), I was intrigued to say the least. The Red Blend (Crush — named after a song, as is the label) quickly became my favorite. Though it’s not an expensive wine, it’s my go-to bottle for company and special occasions. After all, sharing wine and food with friends and family is also one of my favorite things.

I have a couple of recipes I love to make that pair well with my favorite wine, but they take some time to prepare and time is not something I always have an abundance of. So, with company coming, I needed to get creative.



Barilla has a new pasta called Pronto Pasta that does not require you to boil or drain the water. What? Minutes count when you get home have extracurricular activities, have company, and homework to take care of. So I’ve put together a one pot meal to go with my favorite wine: Penne Pesto Pasta with Mushrooms and Artichoke Hearts.

I started at Walmart and found all the ingredients I needed to feed and entertain my guests: my mom and her husband (no pressure!). (I already knew what I wanted to pair with my favorite Dreaming Tree wine, but if you aren’t sure what goes with what, visit the Simple Entertaining Hub via this link to find a tasting and/or pairing event at a Walmart near you.)


I found everything I needed to host my mom and her husband at Walmart. It was going to be tricky to get dinner done, though, since we had an after school activity and would be home later than normal. I was hopeful the Barilla Pronto Pasta and my one-pot recipe would save the day — and I was right.


The first step was to make the pasta. I didn’t have to wait for the water to boil first OR drain it, so that was a time saver right there. It took 10-12 minutes for the pasta to be ready, and then I stirred in the pesto.


Once the pasta was coated, I added mushrooms and stirred them in so the pesto would coat them as well. I added the Barilla Traditional Pasta Sauce next, followed by the artichoke hearts and stirred it all together.


I sprinkled a little cheese on the top to serve, added a salad and baguette, and — voila! We were ready to sit and pour The Dreaming Tree wine.


Though dessert is not an every day thing in our house, I like to have something to offer when I have guests. The Pepperidge Farm Cookie Collection was the perfect match for our wine and meal.


The recipe and evening were a success. We even polished off that bottle of wine.

Here is the recipe:

Penne Pesto Pasta with Mushrooms and Artichoke Hearts
Author: Candy Mickels Mejia via Slightly Overcaffeinated
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6-8
  • one box of Barilla Pronto Penne Pasta
  • one jar of Barilla Traditional Pasta Sauce
  • one jar of Barilla Traditional Basil Pesto
  • 6 oz jar of sliced mushrooms (drained)
  • 7.5 oz jar of quartered marinated artichoke hearts (drained)
  • shredded parmesan cheese to top
  1. Prepare the pasta according to directions
  2. Once most of the water is absorbed, stir in the pesto to coat the pasta
  3. Stir in the mushrooms
  4. Stir in the pasta sauce
  5. Stir in the artichoke hearts
  6. Top with cheese to serve

Be sure to serve with your favorite wine. May I suggest The Dreaming Tree Crush?

2 thoughts on “A Winning Recipe For Holiday Entertaining

  1. A red blend, pesto, and artichokes – amazing flavors going on! This is such a great meal idea to be able to throw together for last minute guests! Great nod to DMB in the title….I can’t wait to try this wine!! [client]

Comments are closed.