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Easy Stuffed Shells with Spinach, Ricotta and Red Sauce

There are few things as comforting for the soul as a good homemade pasta recipe. With that in mind, you’ll definitely want to check out this recipe for making easy stuffed shells with spinach, ricotta and red sauce.

How to Make Stuffed Shells with Spinach, Ricotta and Red Sauce

These easy to follow recipe directions will show you exactly what to do to prepare these stuffed spinach shells with ricotta and red sauce:

  • Preheat the oven. Preheat your oven to 350℉.
  • Prepare the cooking skillet. Heat one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Cook the garlic. Add the minced garlic cloves and cook for 30 seconds.
  • Cook the spinach. Add the chopped fresh spinach and cook until the spinach is wilted and all of the liquid has evaporated.
  • Cool. Remove the spinach mixture from the heat and allow to cool.
  • Prepare the ricotta mixture. Add the cooled spinach, ricotta cheese, minced fresh chives, finely grated parmesan cheese and a single beaten egg to a bowl and stir to combine.
  • Season. Season with salt and black pepper to taste.
  • Set aside. Set the ricotta mixture aside for now.
  • Cook the pasta. Cook the giant pasta snails or shells according to the package directions.
  • Drain. Drain the pasta and cool under cold water.
  • Drizzle. Drizzle the pasta with one tablespoon of olive oil and toss to coat.
  • Prep the baking dish. Spread ½ of the marinara sauce onto the bottom of a 13×9 inch baking dish.
  • Prep the piping bag. Transfer the prepared ricotta filling into a piping bag.
  • Fill the pasta. Fill each pasta snail or shell with the ricotta filling.
  • Prep the pasta for baking. Arrange the pasta in a single layer in the baking dish.
  • Finish it off. Top the pasta with the remaining ½ of the marinara sauce.
  • Bake. Bake the pasta in the preheated oven for 30 minutes.
  • Sprinkle. Remove the pasta from the oven and sprinkle with extra parmesan cheese.
  • Serve. Serve the pasta immediately.

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

3 Pasta Types You Can Use with This Pasta Recipe

Here are a few suggestions for different types of pasta that you can use when making this recipe:

  • Lumache. Also known as lumaconi, this type of pasta is also known as snail shell pasta due its striking resemblance to snail shells.
  • Conchiglie. This type of pasta is also commonly referred to as shell pasta or seashell pasta. Much like snail pasta, shell pasta is named for its resemblance to seashells.
  • Manicotti. Manicotti translates literally into “little sleeves” and it’s perfect for making stuffed pasta recipes like this one.

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

How to Freeze Stuffed Pasta Shells for Later

Allow the stuffed pasta shells to cool completely after cooking. Then arrange the shells on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and flash freeze them. You can then add the shells into either a freezer-safe airtight container or plastic bag and freeze for up to 3 months.

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

If you’re planning on freezing your shells, keep in mind that it’s essential to make sure that you’re thoroughly draining ingredients like spinach or else your pasta shells may end up soggy when they thaw out.

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

Stuffed Shells With Spinach

(Also try: Creamy Garlic Parmesan Spinach Pasta)

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Stuffed Shells With Spinach

Easy Stuffed Shells with Spinach, Ricotta and Red Sauce

  • Author: Emma - NurturedHomes.com
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4 1x
Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh spinach, washed thoroughly and chopped 
  • 2 tbsp olive oil 
  • 8 oz giant pasta snails or shells 
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced 
  • 10 oz ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tbsp minced fresh chives
  • 1/3 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese plus extra for serving 
  • salt and black pepper to taste 
  • 1 ½ cups marinara sauce

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. 
  3. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. 
  4. Add the spinach and cook until the spinach is wilted and all the liquid is evaporated. 
  5. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. 
  6. In a bowl add the spinach, ricotta, chives, Parmesan and egg and stir to combine. 
  7. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. 
  8. Set aside. 
  9. Cook the pasta according to the package directions. 
  10. Drain and cool under cold water. 
  11. Drizzle the pasta with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and toss to coat. 
  12. Spread half of marinara sauce onto bottom of 13×9-inch baking dish. 
  13. Transfer the filling into a piping bag. 
  14. Fill each snail or shell with filling.
  15. Arrange the pasta in a single layer in the baking dish. 
  16. Top with remaining marinara sauce. 
  17. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes. 
  18. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with extra Parmesan. 
  19. Serve immediately.

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