Spinach-Ricotta stuffed shells: the perfect comfort food

Stuffed pasta is for me the best comfort food ever. Thanks to their fillings, they already come with a lot of taste, and you can play with the different fillings according to the seasons and your moods, so you’re never bored!

But making your own stuffed pasta, like ravioli or tortellini, can be quite long, so here’s the perfect option: stuffed shells! This type of dry pasta is an “out of the shelf” pasta, that you can cook quickly while stuffing with a homemade filling.

Here’s my favorite: the spinach and ricotta filling with tomato sauce.

List of ingredients

  • Fresh spinach leaves
    400 Grams (g)
  • Pasta shells
    16 Units
  • Garlic cloves
  • Marinara sauce
    400 Grams (g)
  • Ricotta
    350 Grams (g)
  • Grated mozzarella cheese
    1 Cups (c)
  • Grated parmesan cheese
    1/2 Cups (c)
  • Egg
  • Salt
    1 Tea spoons (tsp)
  • Pepper
    1/2 Tea spoons (tsp)

The best easy-to-cook stuffed pasta shell recipe

Spinach Stuffed Pasta is a go-to dish when you’re in hurry. You can make it quickly for dinner and enjoy this creamy, yet light Italian cuisine without having to prepare 2 hours of meal prep! This recipe works well during winter or fall – or even during summer when inviting friends over for an Italian cuisine night.
This shell pasta recipe is also a great option for vegetarians as it is mainly prepared with vegetables and cheese!
Without further ado, here’s how to cook spinach-ricotta stuffed shells!

Steps to make Spinach-Ricotta stuffed shells: the perfect comfort food

  1. Prepare the pasta

    Pre-heat your oven at 200°C. Boil water in a large saucepan. Cook your pasta al dente according to the box instruction. As it usually takes around 10 min, you have the time to prepare the filling in the meantime! When the pasta is done, cool down and reserve.

  2. Cook the spinach

    Heat 1-1/2 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When it begins to shimmer, add garlic and cook until browned slightly but not burning – about 1 minute or so (careful!). Add the spinach one handful at time while stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Spinach are quite quick to cook as they take about 3-4 minutes total cooking time. By this time, the spinach leaves should be reduced by half! Remove from the heat.

  3. Prepare the spinach-ricotta filling

    In a large bowl, stir together the spinach, ricotta, mozzarella, Parmesan, egg, until thoroughly combined. Season with salt and pepper. Place all the mixture in a piping bag if you have.

  4. Pour half of the marinara sauce in a shallow baking dish

    Carefully place your cooked shells one at a time in the dish, over the tomato sauce. You want them to be opened on the top, so you can stuff them easily. With the piping bag or a small spoon, stuff each shell pasta with the ricotta-spinach mixture. Don’t hesitate to be generous, you want them to be creamy enough!

  5. Cover with the remaining tomato sauce and bake covered with aluminum foil for 25 minutes.

  6. Remove the foil and continue baking until it gets brown (approx 10-15 min more).

  7. Serve with a dust of Parmesan cheese on the top!

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Hi there! My name is Estelle Ducommun. I’m a French foodie who is not afraid to admit that Italian cuisine is out-of-this-world! I love how simple, yet delicate and delicious some Italian recipes can be. I hope I can share a few recipes with you here, and maybe some fun facts about pasta and pizza that you might not know. Let’s get cooking!

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