Labor Day Recipes from the SHIFT Crew

Celebrate the Labor Day holiday with some recipes from the SHIFT team. See what our team might be cooking up this weekend! I’m getting hungry reading about them. Click on the links below to be taken to each specific recipe a little further down.

After you have taken in all the possible yumminess, tell us what you’re planning on making this weekend? Something cold? Something sweet? Leave a comment!

Cowboy Caviar
Watermelon Arugula Salad
Apple Chicken Sausage Pasta with Butternut Squash*
Peanut Butter Rice Krispy Treats
Pumpkin Spice for Pies and Lattes

cowboy caviar

Cowboy Caviar – Cathy Summers

Cathy says: The best Sunday afternoon snack ever. Drink Dos Equis Amber or Corona to complete the south of the border vibe.

6 oz chunky salsa or pico de gallo  (or if you want to put in the extra effort, chop tomatoes, red onion, jalapeno peppers and cilantro)
1 can sweet yellow & white corn, drained and rinsed
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can of garbanzo beans (optional!)
1 avocado (large, cubed)

Mix ingredients in a large bowl. Season with garlic salt. Refrigerate for 20 minutes or until ready to serve. Eat generously with tortilla chips.

photo by Elinor Carucci

Watermelon Arugula Salad – Sarah Borup

Sarah says: This one’s a crowd pleaser with the sweetness of the watermelon and spice of the arugula. It’s great alongside steak, chicken, fish, or as a main course.

Chop up watermelon into bite-sized cubes
Mix with watermelon and feta
Add on top of chopped arugula lettuce
Dress with homemade salad dressing of your choice – Sarah’s personal favorite is a combination of key lime olive oil and coconut white balsamic vinegar.

Apple Chicken Sausage Pasta with Butternut Squash* – Alicia Cerasuolo

Alicia says: My favorite summer dishes involves pasta and is one of my mom’s recipes. The flavors are refreshing, and it’s just as delicious at room temperature as it is served hot. I’ll be serving it in Cape Cod this weekend!
Apple Chicken Sausage Pasta


1 butternut squash, cut into 1” squares
1 tablespoon of EVOO (more as needed)
1 pkg. of apple chicken sausage (Al Fresco has awesome ones), sliced
1 box of pasta of your choice
2 cups of apple juice or apple cider
1 heaping tablespoon of cornstarch
1 heaping tablespoon of honey or brown sugar (or a combination of the two)


Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the butternut squash. Boil for about 10 minutes, until a fork can easily pierce through. Drain and put aside in a large pasta bowl.

Heat the EVOO over medium-high heat and add the apple chicken sausage slices in a single layer. Al Fresco’s some pre-cooked, so cook until browned and then flip to brown the other side. Add more EVOO as needed.

In the meantime, cook the pasta. Then, add the apple juice/cider, cornstarch and honey/brown sugar to a Tupperware container and shake the ingredients to mix. Pour the mixture over the browned sausages and reduce heat to medium. Stir.

When the sauce is bubbling and thickened, about 3-4 minutes, pour over squash and cooked pasta.

Serve immediately or at room temperature, and as always sprinkle with a little grated parmesan!

Peanut Butter Treats

Peanut Butter Rice Krispy Treats – Danielle Coe

Danielle says: It’s easy regardless and SO delicious.

Every year when I was growing up I’d go to Pismo Beach for Labor Day weekend with all of our family and friends. We had a huge BBQ on Sunday night where everyone would bring food, and my mom would make these amazing peanut butter rice krispy treats that everyone went wild for. Right after dessert (when I’d had about 10 of those treats), everyone would start slinking away to grab –seriously—bags of marshmallows. That’s when the whole hotel lawn would erupt into a huge marshmallow fight – adults and kids, big and small, it was wild. The hotel didn’t care; they expected it since we had been doing it for 15+ years (I’m sure they joined in and I didn’t notice). Note: Getting pegged with a marshmallow actually kinda hurts.

2 jars peanut butter
1 large box rice krispy cereal
1 bag butterscotch chips

Melt the peanut butter and butterscotch chips in a double broiler
Pour over rice krispies in a big pot and mix evenly
Pour mix into 9×13 pan evenly
Let chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours (or until hard)


Pumpkin Spice for Pies and Lattes – Christopher S. Penn

Chris says: Useful and delicious – but there’s no pumpkin in it.

You’ll need high quality spices from the store or Amazon, especially if you have specific dietary needs. Mix the below ratios in as little or as much as you need. Because spices oxidize quickly, only make as much as you need at any given time, especially if you’re grinding your own spices. If you seal the dry goods in an airtight container, they’ll stay reasonably fresh for a couple of weeks. Your best bet is to mix the ratios of whole spices, bag those in little containers, and then grind on demand. Note that there is no pumpkin in it because it’s assumed you’d use pumpkin spice on pumpkins.

Dry Goods

4 parts cinnamon
3 parts ginger
2 part nutmeg
1 part allspice
1 part cloves
1/4 part salt

Wet Goods for something like a pumpkin spice latte

4 parts honey

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