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Stuffed shells

Easy Stuffed Shells

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 6 1x


This stuffed shells recipe is easy and a crowd pleaser! The ricotta stuffed pasta shells swimming in tomato sauce are a hit every time.


  • 24 jumbo pasta shells (6.5 ounces)
  • 28 ounces fire roasted crushed tomatoes*
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 10 ounces frozen spinach
  • 15 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cups whole milk mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 egg
  • Chopped parsley or basil, for garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Boil the shells until al dente, according to the package instructions. Drain them and return them to the pot. Stir in a drizzle of olive oil to prevent sticking.
  3. Meanwhile, make the tomato sauce: In a medium bowl, mix the fire roasted tomatoes, grated garlic, olive oil, 1 teaspoon dried oregano, and 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt. Mix well until all the olive oil is incorporated.
  4. Make the filling: Thaw the spinach following the package instructions, then squeeze out as much water as possible with your hands (it should feel dry and crumbly before using it). Mix it with the other filling ingredients: the ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, 1 cup mozzarella cheese, lemon zest, egg, 1 teaspoon oregano and 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt.
  5. Spread half the tomato sauce in the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch pan. Take the shells one at a time and stuff them with the cheese mixture. Top with more tomato sauce and then mozzarella cheese (we spread them in lines over the top of each row of shells, so you can still see the shell shapes).
  6. Cover the pan with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Then uncover and bake for 5 to 10 minutes more until the cheese is melted. Garnish with chopped parsley or basil and serve. Leftovers last refrigerated for 4 days; reheat in a 375°F oven until warmed through. You can also freeze leftovers for up to 3 months.


*If desired, you can use purchased marinara sauce instead of making your own. If so, still add the 1 clove grated garlic and 1 teaspoon dried oregano to enhance the flavor.

  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Diet: Vegetarian

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