Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Spinach and Ricotta stuffed shells

  Photo courtesy of Cooking Light

I have to admit I have never made stuffed shells. And if we are being honest here, it always seemed like it would be a time-consuming meal. Here is something to know about me. I can spent 6 hours in the kitchen, making the most complicated dessert known to man. Tell me a meal is going to take longer than 30 minutes though, and I will be on the phone for take-out before you blink an eye. Hey, when I'm hungry I'm hungry. I don't want a meal that is going to take a long time.  So, stuffed shells seemed like a Sunday kind of meal. You know the kind that does take a long time and should only ever be made on a weekend. Well- I was wrong. I am woman enough to admit that. Stuffed shells are actually quite easy. 

It was a matter of boiling the shells. Mixing up the ricotta mixture in a bowl. And then you just have to fill the shells! To make matters even easier, I have a time-saving and stress-free way of filling those shells- simply fill a pastry bag (or if you do not have one of those use a zip-lock bag and cut a corner off) and then just pipe the filling into the shells. It was so easy! I then topped the shells with my homemade tomato sauce and parmesan cheese and they were ready for the oven. Voila! Spinach ricotta stuffed shells in a fairly short amount of time. Oh and this is a lightened up version. You just gotta love that.

Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Shells


  • 2 cups sauce
  • 2 1/2 cups part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese 
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed dry
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 24 cooked jumbo pasta shells


  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Spread 1/2 cup tomato sauce over bottom of a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.
  3. Combine ricotta and next 8 ingredients (through garlic) in a large bowl, stirring well. Spoon about 1 1/2 tablespoons filling into each pasta shell. Arrange stuffed shells in prepared dish; spread with remaining 1 1/2 cups tomato sauce. Cover and bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

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