Valentine’s Dinner With The Kids – Italian Roast Beef Crescent Ring

It’s almost Valentine’s Day and all the good babysitters are booked or have already made romantic plans of their own. I say, salvage the evening by turning the night into a family date at home. It’s a sensible way to save the evening, save money, and save your sanity — plus, it can actually be quite fun.  Speaking from personal experience as a mom with little time for getting fixed up, let alone four or more hours lingering over a candlelight dinner, this low-stress, low-dollar route is even more romantic because there are no lofty expectations.

With youngsters gathered ‘round the table, a menu of lobster tails and filet mignon with sautéed mushrooms is almost guaranteed to NOT be appreciated. In fact, I would expect cries of horror from the little sweethearts. However, if your family is anything like mine, they are sure to fall in love with my recipe for an Italian Roast Beef Crescent Ring. It’s cheesy, beefy goodness is shaped like a heart to win hearts!

Deli roast beef, fresh baby spinach, provolone cheese and sun-dried tomatoes are tucked inside buttery, crescent dinner roll dough and sprinkled with Italian herbs. The result is a shareable meal that the whole herd can get wrapped up in — you’ll most likely be putting some variation of it in your weekly dinner rotation!  Perhaps the best news is that this simple recipe only takes 30 minutes to make from start to finish, gaining you precious time to relax and enjoy Cupid’s chaos.

When making this crescent ring, use a heart dish or cut-out from parchment paper to help you create the right shape. After laying out the dough triangles, all that remains is to pile up the ingredients, fold over the end pieces, sprinkle with seasonings and bake for about 20 minutes until golden brown and bubbling with cheese. While dinner works its magic in the oven, take advantage of the down time and uncork a bottle of wine for your honey and punch straws in the juice pouches for the kiddos.

Also, when possible, I like to put my children to work with the meal making. Pre-slice cucumbers, zucchini, avocado or cheese; pint-sized hands can easily use a small heart cookie cutter to make toppings for a salad. This interactive task might just get them to eat their veggies!

Italian Beef Crescent Ring

Servings8 servings
  • cans (8-ounces each) refrigerated crescent dinner roll dough
  • pound roast beef deli lunch meat, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 6 ounces provolone cheese sliced, and halved into “semi circles”
  • 2 ounces un-dried tomatoes, cut in thin strips
  • 2 tablespoons Italian Blend Herbs
  • 1 cup Ranch Dressing, for serving
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F degrees. Lightly spray large baking sheet with cooking spray.
  2. Unroll both cans of crescent dough and separate into 16 triangles along perforations.
  3. Arrange triangles (with narrow ends of triangle pointed outward) on cookie sheet to form a heart shape with approximate 6-inch opening in center. Fat ends of triangles will overlap a bit.
  4. Fold up roast beef slices and pile up along the heart-shaped inner perimeter of crescent dough.
  5. Top beef with spinach, halved slices of cheese and sun-dried tomatoes.
  6. Pull each pointed end of dough up and over filling, tucking in underneath to secure. Some of the filling will be showing through, that’s okay.
  7. Sprinkle top of dough with Italian herbs and garlic salt.
  8. Bake at 375 F degrees for 20 to 22 minutes or until lightly golden brown and cheese melting. Let cool for 5 minutes before cutting into slices.