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Vegetarian Skillet Stuffed Shells

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Main
Cuisine: Italian
Author: Pam - For the Love of Cooking / Original by Epicurious


  • 15-18 jumbo pasta shells
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 lb cremini mushrooms, sliced thinly
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 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)
  • 3/4 cup Parmesan, finely grated plus more for serving
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella, shredded
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • Fresh parsley, chopped for serving


  • 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 over cook 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 over stuff 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.