Simple Stuffed Shells

Though Jay would be happy to eat the same 5 meals on rotation week after week to make my life easier (love you!), I really enjoy the challenge of finding and/or coming up with new recipes. After all, how would this blog survive if I always made the same recipes?

Jumbo shells really are a wonderful invention. You can stuff them with just about anything that goes with pasta – meat, cheese, vegetables, you name it – and they will always taste delicious. I decided to go with a combination of vegetables and cheese in this recipe and was really happy with how they turned out. There are probably a million variations of stuffed shells recipes floating around out there (I’ve seen about half a million on Pinterest), and I encourage you to try a few of them out! (**Ed. Note: I forgot to mention one thing, in case it wasn’t absolutely obvious without me saying it: when you boil the shells, be sure to stir them gently so that they don’t break, otherwise you’ll have nothing to stuff. DO NOT do what my lovely husband did, and stir them with a knife! Needless to say, he was relieved of his sous chef duties for the evening after that!!)

It’s a pretty simple but messy process when it comes to actually stuffing the shells. I prefer to just get in there and use my hands to stuff them- trying to maneuver a spoon into a cooked piece of pasta can be trickier than it’s worth, and your hands will just end up covered in stuffing anyway.

If you have another recipe for stuffed shells, feel free to share it in the comment section below!

Mushroom, Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Shells

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1 box of jumbo shells (I only used about 25)
1/2 can pasta sauce
2 small or 1 large container of light ricotta cheese (approx. 500-600g)
1/2 package frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and drained very well
8 mushrooms, diced (any kind- I used cremini)
2 tbsp light grated parmesan
1 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
2/3 cup light shredded mozzarella

  1. Prepare shells according to package directions. If boiling, add a drop of olive oil to the water to ensure that shells don’t stick together. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. While shells are boiling, in a medium bowl mix together ricotta cheese, spinach, mushrooms, grated parmesan, parsley, oregano, salt and pepper. Set aside.
  3. Pour all the sauce in the bottom of a 9 x 13 baking dish. Be sure to cover the whole bottom.
  4. Once shells are ready, drain very well. Using your hands, carefully open a shell and stuff it with as much of the cheese mixture as desired. Set down in baking dish. Repeat until shells and stuffing are gone.
  5. Top shells with shredded mozzarella. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes.

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