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Vegetarian Skillet Stuffed Shells

Vegetarian Skillet Stuffed Shells

I had been craving for Italian food for awhile so I was very excited when I stumbled upon a recipe on Epicurious for these vegetarian skillet stuffed shells. It was a fairly easy recipe to make and called for ingredients I had on hand. I kept close to the original recipe although I substituted cottage cheese for ricotta, added some mozzarella, and baked them in the oven for the last portion of cooking instead of the on the stove top. I really liked that the recipe was healthier and didn’t call for a ton of cheese on top. I served these shells with a light and delicious salad and some freshly baked bread for a delicious dinner that my whole family enjoyed.

Vegetarian Skillet Stuffed Shells

How to Make Vegetarian Skillet Stuffed Shells

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Cook the shells in boiling salted water per package instructions, stirring occasionally, until very al dente, about 9 minutes; drain. Place the separated shells on a baking sheet until needed. Side Note: Don’t overcook the shells – they will finish cooking in the sauce.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sliced mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until they release their juices and are golden brown, about 5-6 minutes; season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste.

Add the wine and cook, stirring often, until reduced by half, 2 minutes. Add the spinach and cook, stirring constantly, until the spinach is wilted and most of the liquid has evaporated about 4 minutes. Transfer mixture to a large bowl; set aside.

Heat the butter in the same ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sliced garlic and crushed red pepper flakes and cook, stirring constantly, for 1-2 minutes, until fragrant and softened. Add the marinara sauce and bring to a simmer over low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally until warmed through, about 4-5 minutes.

While the sauce is simmering, add the cottage cheese (or ricotta), Parmesan, mozzarella, and oregano to the bowl with the mushroom mixture; stir until well combined. Taste and season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste.

Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the cheese mixture into each shell making sure not to overstuff the shells.

Nestle the stuffed shells into the simmering sauce.

Vegetarian Skillet Stuffed Shells

Cover with a lid and place into the oven to bake for 20 minutes. Remove the lid and continue to cook for 5 minutes.

Remove from the oven. Serve with fresh parsley on top and Parmesan on the side. Serve and enjoy.

Vegetarian Skillet Stuffed Shells

 

Vegetarian Skillet Stuffed Shells

Vegetarian Skillet Stuffed Shells

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Course: Main
Cuisine: Italian
Author: Pam - For the Love of Cooking / Original by Epicurious

Ingredients

  • 15-18 jumbo pasta shells
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ lb cremini mushrooms, sliced thinly
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 5 oz baby spinach, chopped
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 6 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 jar marinara sauce (my jar was 32 oz - about 4 cups)
  • 2 cups whole milk small curd cottage cheese (or ricotta)
  • ¾ cup Parmesan, finely grated plus more for serving
  • ½ cup mozzarella, shredded
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • Fresh parsley, chopped for serving

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. 
  • Cook the shells in boiling salted water per package instructions, stirring occasionally, until very al dente, about 9 minutes; drain. Place the separated shells on a baking sheet until needed. 
    Side Note: Don't overcook the shells - they will finish cooking in the sauce.  
  • Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large oven proof skillet over medium-high heat. 
  • Add the sliced mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until they release their juices and are golden brown, about 5-6 minutes; season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste. 
  • Add the wine and cook, stirring often, until reduced by half, 2 minutes. 
  • Add the spinach and cook, stirring constantly, until the spinach is wilted and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 4 minutes. Transfer mixture to a large bowl; set aside. 
  • Heat the butter in the same oven proof skillet over medium-high heat. 
  • Add the sliced garlic and crushed red pepper flakes and cook, stirring constantly, for 1-2 minutes, until fragrant and softened. 
  • Add the marinara sauce and bring to a simmer over low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally until warmed through, about 4-5 minutes. 
  • While the sauce is simmering, add the cottage cheese (or ricotta), Parmesan, mozzarella, and oregano to the bowl with the mushroom mixture; stir until well combined. Taste and season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste. 
  • Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the cheese mixture into each shell making sure not to overstuff the shells. 
  • Nestle the stuffed shells into the simmering sauce. Cover with a lid and place into the oven to bake for 20 minutes. 
  • Remove the lid and continue to cook for 5 minutes. 
  • Remove from the oven. Serve with fresh parsley on top and Parmesan on the side. Enjoy. 
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9 Comments

  1. Great looking dish! I love skillet dinners — easy to make, and less trouble (to me, at least) than a sheet pan dinner. Plus did I say easy? 🙂 This looks terrific — neat recipe. Thanks!

  2. I have never seen jumbo shells here, pity as I really like the sound of this recipe. Have a good day Diane

  3. I love stuffed shells! Definitely going to try this filling next time I make them.

  4. I don’t see marinar sauce in the recipe. Am I missing something?

    1. Terry,

      Thanks for pointing that out! I have corrected the recipe.

      -Pam

  5. I would love to make this recipe next time my daughter in law comes to visit. She is a pasta lover and this recipe looks amazing. Thanks for the easy step by step instructions.