Spinach Ricotta Stuffed Shells

Catalina Castravet
By Catalina Castravet
Updated:
Published:
5 from 6 reviews

Ricotta Stuffed Shells combine two of my favorites: cheese and pasta! Festive and flavorful, this classic Italian-inspired dish is truly restaurant-worthy!

Pasta dishes are a constant in our menu at home because they are hearty and easy to prepare. And I love having them alongside Baked Chicken Thighs, Skillet Pork Chops, and Creamy Chicken Francese!

Spinach Ricotta Stuffed Shells

Spinach Ricotta Stuffed Shells

Ricotta Stuffed Shells are made into individual portions, so it is a nice dish to have when you are serving a big group. Or, you can even put it in your lunchbox, and it will fit perfectly.

And it looks good! The green color of the vegetables and the red color of the marinara sauce are so appetizing. At first glance, the colors will already know that it is an Italian dish. And it is!

And the taste is heavenly! Even kids love this juicy and cheesy treat. Not to mention, this is even a nice way to introduce vegetables in their diet.

It is easy to prepare although it looks complicated! Let this recipe guide you!

Photo of ricotta stuffed shells ingredients.

How to make Ricotta Stuffed Shells

  • Prepare for baking: Set the oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit to preheat.
  • Cook the pasta: Follow the directions in the package.
  • Cook the spinach: In a skillet, sauté the garlic in oil. Then, stir in the spinach. Set aside.
  • Prepare the cheese mixture: In a bowl, combine the spinach, cheeses, and the rest of the ingredients.
  • Stuff: Pour a cup of sauce into a baking dish. Fill each pasta with the mixture.
  • Bake: Pour in the remaining sauce then cover with aluminum foil. Bake for 25 minutes then remove the foil. Continue baking for another 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Serve: Garnish with parmesan and serve warm.

Image of how to make filling for ricotta stuffed shells.

What kind of filling can you add?

You can put in meat to make it heartier. Get inspired by other pasta dishes like the following:

You can also include cooked mushrooms or red pepper! Other cheeses like feta or cottage cheese will do, too!

Picture of how to make ricotta stuffed shells.

What to serve with stuffed shells?

How long can you keep stuffed shells with cheese in the refrigerator?

Keep them for 3 to 5 days. To reheat, simply bake them again at the same temperature as you did the first time.

Photo of spinach ricotta stuffed shells in marinara sauce.

Can you freeze Ricotta Stuffed Shells before baking?

Yes! As a make-ahead dish, you can freeze the stuffed shells without the sauce for up to a week. Then, right before baking, add the sauce.

Can you freeze Ricotta Stuffed Shells after baking?

You can freeze this dish for up to 2 months. This is the preferred method, one with the sauce already, instead of storing dry pasta.

How do you reheat Stuffed Shells?

Thaw it first if it came from the freezer. Then, cover with foil and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit, just like how you would make it the first time.

Remove the foil after 25 minutes to broil the surface until bubbly for another 10 to 15 minutes.

More delicious pasta dishes:

Photo of spinach ricotta stuffed shells.

Recipe Tips:

  • Choose a high-quality ricotta cheese that will have less moisture than those with gum in the ingredients. This is to ensure that the outcome will not be watery.
  • Make sure that the spinach is also dry. A salad spinner can help. And if there is still water, pat them dry with a towel.
  • Do not overcook the shells as they will continue to cook upon baking. Aim for just al dente.
  • Use a piping bag to make it easier for you to fill the shells in.
Save Recipe
5 from 6 reviews
Ricotta Stuffed Shells
Author: Catalina Castravet Serves: 6 servings
Prep time: 30 minutes Cook time: 40 minutes Total time: 1 hr 10 mins

Ingredients

  • 16-20  jumbo pasta shells 
  • 2 tablespoons  olive oil 
  • 4 cloves  garlic  (minced)
  • 4 cups  packed fresh spinach leaves  (roughly chopped)
  • 32 oz  ricotta cheese 
  • 1 cup  mozzarella cheese  (shredded)
  • 1 cup  grated Parmesan cheese  (plus more for serving)
  • 2  large eggs  (beaten)
  • 1 teaspoon  onion powder 
  • 1 teaspoon  dried Italian herbs 
  • 1/2 teaspoon  dried parsley 
  • 1/2 teaspoon  dried basil 
  • 1 teaspoon  kosher salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper 
  • 3 cups  marinara sauce 

Garnish:

  •  Fresh basil and parmesan cheese 

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Place a large saucepan with water over high heat and cook the pasta al dente, according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  3. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add the oil and when it starts to shimmer, add the garlic and cook until it begins to brown, about a minute.
  4. Add the chopped spinach, stir and cook until it begins to wilt, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
  5. In a mixing bowl, stir together the cooked spinach, ricotta, mozzarella, Parmesan cheese, egg, onion powder, dried Italian herbs, dried parsley, dried basil, salt, and pepper until thoroughly combined.
  6. Pour 1 cup of the marinara sauce into the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish.
  7. Stuff each pasta shell with a hefty amount of the spinach and cheese mixture, and arrange in the baking dish.
  8. Cover with the remaining marina sauce and cover with aluminum foil, bake for 25 minutes.
  9. Remove the foil and continue baking until the top begins to brown, another 10-15 minutes.
  10. Serve warm with grated Parmesan cheese.
Calories: 545 Carbohydrates: 30 Protein: 36 Fat: 32 Saturated Fat: 17 Cholesterol: 150 Sodium: 1590 Potassium: 784 Fiber: 4 Sugar: 7 Vitamin A: 3393 Vitamin C: 14 Calcium: 734 Iron: 3
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Spinach Ricotta Stuffed Shells

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Comments

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Amber Myers

This looks delicious. We are huge pasta fans, so I'll have to try this for dinner.

Reply

Andrew

Stuffed shells are my son's favorite! I've honestly never made them with fresh spinach, though, only frozen. Your photos are gorgeous! And now I want to try chicken bacon ranch fillings!

Reply

Jen

Ooh, I like the sound of the chicken bacon ranch one. I would have never thought to do that.

Reply

Amanda

Pasta is one of my favourites. I never actually tried stuffing the shells; maybe I will try this one. Thanks for sharing.

Reply

Chef Dennis

Hmm yum! I love Italian Food sooo much! This Spinach Ricotta Stuffed Shells recipe is really mouthwatering! The cheese and the pasta made this recipe perfect!

Reply

Mama Maggie's Kitchen

Yum! I am soooo loving this Spinach Ricotta Stuffed Shells recipe! I'm sure this will become my family's new favorite. I can't wait!

Reply

Kathy

This looks so amazing. I have made stuffed shells before, and they are so delicious. I need to give your recipe a try now too. I bet it's really good too.

Reply

Lizzie Lau

My mom used to make this dish a lot when I was a kid, it was always a family favorite. I'm going to send her this recipe as a reminder.

Reply

Cherise Kachelmuss

Those look amazing. I love that you mention about freezing them as I am about curious about what I can and can't freeze.

Reply

Ruth I

I've mever tried a recipe like this before. This dish looks so delicious. I think it i will be perfect!

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Agnes

Oh this looks yummy! I forgot to buy pasta shells, how can I copy your recipe?

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Bohemian Babushka

Loving the cottage cheese suggestion as we don't really care for ricotta. This looks delicioso! Gracias for the recipe.

Reply

Rosemary

I love stuffed shells but don't eat them often enough. This is a tasty recipe that's super easy to make. Thank you for the inspiration to try it at home :)

Reply

Sylvia Greenberg

Delicious receipe

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