Pasta can be the ultimate comfort food, satisfying big appetites, inspiring cravings, and providing nostalgia all in one bite. No one loves pasta more than our team at Moore Appliance Service, and Jeanette’s stuffed shells with spinach never leave us hungry. We’ll detail how to make spinach stuffed shells, from the creamy filling to the meaty sauce, for a hearty one-dish meal.
How to Feed a Crowd: Stuffed Shells With Spinach
Aside from being comforting, pasta is a great way to feed a crowd with little effort and expense. Jeanette’s stuffed shells with spinach can even be prepped in advance, making it an ideal family dinner for busy weeknights. But before we discuss how to make stuffed shells, we’ll provide some background on its Italian history. We’ll also review the perfect side dishes to complement each cheesy bite.
What Are Stuffed Shells Called?
Spinach stuffed shells are a cuisine rooted in Italy. In Italian, this pasta is known as conchiglie, meaning seashell, for its shell-like shape that’s ideal for catching and holding sauce. Conchiglie pasta comes in a variety of sizes, the largest of which are for stuffed shells that are baked with a cheesy filling after boiling.
What Goes With Stuffed Shells?
Spinach, ricotta, and sausage stuffed shells is a rich and filling dish, best complemented with a fresh green vegetable and some crusty bread. We suggest serving it with a simple green salad, roasted broccoli, or colorful marinated vegetables. A sliced French baguette or warm breadsticks are perfect for dipping in the ricotta cheese and meat sauce.
Stuffed Shells With Spinach Recipe
The best stuffed shells recipe combines the creaminess of spinach ricotta filling with a marinara sauce enhanced with sweet or spicy sausage. Topped with mozzarella cheese, stuffed shells with spinach is a crowd-pleasing dish to satisfy every pasta lover’s appetite.
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
1 package jumbo pasta shells
4 cups ricotta cheese
12 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese
¾ cup Parmesan cheese
4 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon oregano
1 package frozen spinach, thawed and drained
45 ounces marinara sauce (one large jar)
1 pound ground Italian sausage
Preheat oven to 350°F. Cook shells according to package instructions until al dente. Drain and set aside to cool. In a skillet over medium heat, crumble sausage and cook for 8-10 minutes until browned. Drain off remaining fat and moisture and set aside. In a large bowl combine ricotta, 8 ounces of mozzarella, ½ cup Parmesan, eggs, garlic powder, oregano, and spinach. In a separate bowl, combine sausage and marinara sauce.
Spray a 9×13 inch baking pan with cooking spray and pour half the marinara sauce in the pan. Carefully fill each shell with ricotta cheese mixture and place on top of sauce in baking dish. Pour remaining sauce over shells and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
Cover with foil and bake for 35-40 minutes until sauce is bubbling.
As delicious as Jeanette’s stuffed shells with spinach can be, try to save room for dessert. Her decadent chocolate cobbler or sweet strawberry cheesecake cookie cups are the perfect compliment to this comfort food classic.