Stuffed shells with spinach are the perfect vegetarian weeknight meal. Make this easy pasta recipe ahead and bake it to cheesy perfection in under 30 minutes!
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If you know me, you’ll know I love serving a good comfort food meal to my family after a long day. This spinach and ricotta stuffed shells is one of my favourite comforting recipes that’s simple yet oh so flavourful! It’s really proof of the fact that the best dishes are made with real, simple, wholesome ingredients – that’s definitely part of my cooking philosophy here on The Busy Baker. Let fresh, good quality ingredients speak for themselves and stay away from packaged and ready to eat foods with tons of additives. Simple is best!
Shortcut for stuffed shells with spinach and ricotta
To make recipes like stuffed shells with spinach really simple, look for store-bought marinara sauce that contains nothing but tomatoes, herbs, and maybe some olive oil. Also, be sure to use high-quality pasta (Barilla is my brand of choice), and buy fresh cheeses from the deli section of your grocery store. Or, better yet, hit up an Italian or European market if you have one near by. Also, use fresh herbs and spinach from the produce section. Using fresh, high-quality ingredients not only makes this dinner easy to make, but it’ll take the flavour to the next level as well!
If you’re a big fan of spinach like me, then Ricotta Stuffed Shells with Spinach is definitely the recipe for you! And you’ll probably also love my Easy One Pan Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni recipe. It’s a total comfort-food baked pasta dish with creamy spinach and ricotta filling and an easy homemade Marinara sauce. Both of these recipes are quick, easy to make, and restaurant-quality delicious!!
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I hope you love the ricotta stuffed shells with spinach as much as we do! Let me know in the comments below, what’s your favourite cheesy meal? I’d love to know!
Looking for more recipes like this? You’ll love these:
- Berry Walnut Spinach Salad with Maple Vinaigrette
- Rainbow Vegetable Pasta Salad with Creamy Italian Herb Dressing
- Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad
- Thai Chicken Spiralized Zucchini Salad
- Asian Cabbage Salad with Ginger Peanut Dressing
- Greek Couscous Salad Lunch Bowls
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Easy Ricotta Stuffed Shells with Spinach
- 250 grams jumbo shells pasta about 32 shells
- 1 tablespoon salt for the pasta water
For the filling:
- 750 grams ricotta cheese
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan
- 1 cup chopped fresh spinach
- 3 cloves garlic finely minced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil or fresh basil, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano or fresh oregano, chopped
- 1 egg
- 2 cups marinara sauce
- 1/2 cup marinara sauce
- 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- fresh chopped basil or parsley, for garnish (optional)
- Heat a large pot of water over high heat and add the salt. Let it come to a boil, and when it does, cook the jumbo shells pasta in the water for about 8 or 9 minutes (just short of al dente - follow the directions on the package!)
- While the pasta cooks, combine the ricotta, mozzarella, parmesan, spinach, garlic, salt, pepper, basil, oregano and the egg in a large bowl and mix together well with a wooden spoon or spatula. Be sure everything is well combined and all the ingredients are distributed evenly.
- Once the pasta is done, drain it (but don't rinse it).
- Add the marinara sauce into a 9-inch by 13-inch casserole dish that's been greased with a little bit of oil or cooking spray. Spread the marinara sauce into an even layer in the bottom of the dish.
- One by one, add the filling into the shell pasta until full and nestle the shells into the marinara sauce. You can use a spoon for this job, or adding the filling to a piping bag works well too.
- Fill all the shells and arrange them in rows in the baking dish.
- Drizzle the 1/2 cup marinara sauce over the shells.
- Top the shells with the grated mozzarella and grated parmesan and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for about 30-37 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and has begin to brown slightly around the edges.
- Top with some fresh chopped basil or parsley before serving (optional).