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Cheeseburger Shellys @loavesanddishes.net
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5 from 1 vote

Spinach Stuffed Shells

Easy, Terrific Spinach Stuffed Shells are so simple and ready in less than 45 minutes!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: main
Cuisine: American
Keyword: spinach musrhoom stuffed shells, Spinach stuffed shells
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 155kcal
Author: Loaves and Dishes
Cost: $15

Ingredients

  • ½ Box Jumbo Pasta Shells 6 oz - prepared per box instructions
  • 2 tbs vegetable oil
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic - minced.
  • ½ onion - chopped small
  • 8 oz fresh spinach
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 1 block of cream cheese - softened and cut into 1 inch blocks
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp Italian Seasoning
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 8 oz Triple Cheddar shredded mix
  • 1 23 oz spaghetti sauce
  • 1-2 Cups Mozzarella Shredded Cheese

Instructions

Cook the Shells

  • In a large stock pot (4-6 quart) add water and heat over high heat until boiling. Add the shells and cook until nearly done (within a couple of minutes of the "done" time listed on the box). Pour through a colander and rinse with cool water. Separate the shells so they don't stick together and toss with 2 tbs of vegetable oil. You can do this while you prepare the shell stuffing.

Prepare the Shell Stuffing

  • Preheat the oven to 350. In a medium frying pan over medium heat on the stove top add 2 Tbs Olive Oil. Add the minced garlic and chopped onion so that all of them can cook together. Add the fresh spinach. Add the salt and pepper.
  • When the spinach is completely wilted. Remove to a bowl leaving the water behind. Using the same frying pan, add the mushrooms to the water and cook for 3-5 minutes till softened.
  • When mushrooms are softened, pour off the water. Pour off any remaining water from the waiting spinach and add it back to the frying pan. Add the softened cream cheese, garlic powder, onion powder and Italian Seasoning, salt and pepper. Stir until cream cheese is mostly melted. Stir in the Triple Cheddar Shredded Cheese and then remove from heat. Set aside to cool slightly.

Combine shells and stuffing into final dish

  • In a 2 quart baking dish, spread a little bit of the pasta sauce - ¼ cup. Just so shells won’t stick. Using a household teaspoon, fill each shell with the spinach cheese mixture. Once the shelly is full place it in the baking pan. Repeat until the baking dish is full with shells lined up like little soldiers. You may have more mix than shells - or all of your shells may not fit- in that case just put your extra filling around in the dish - you can see what I did in my movie here. Save the extra shells for a different cooking project.
  • Once shells are in place, cover with the remaining pasta sauce and spread the sauce around to cover. Sprinkle the Mozzarella Cheese on top. Bake for 30 mins until the pasta sauce is bubbling through and the cheese is melting and starting to brown.

Video

Notes

  • This recipe is SUPER versatile!  Want to use different veggies, no problem, just precook them and mix them in!  Try: carrots, broccoli, squash, onions, etc. 
  • Try changing up the seasonings by using thyme, chipotle, etc.  It doesn’t have to be Italian seasonings. 
  • Use different types of cheese and see how you like that.  I would recommend cheese that melt very well like gouda and fontina. 
  • Give your dish a mexican twist and stuff with chopped pepperonis! 
  • Feel free to add ground beef or chopped chicken to this dish if you would like for it to have meat. 
  • Make sure to leave the shells a little firm (don’t cook for the entire cooking time stated on the box, leave a minute or two) so that they stand up to filling. 
  • Rinse the shells well with cool water to make them easier to handle. 
  • Use less dishes by mixing all of the stuffing ingredients together in the frying pan. 
  • Shortcuts for this recipe:  Use jarred minced garlic, use frozen spinach, if you can find the “no cook” or precooked shells or fresh shells, use those. Use a commercial sauce.   
PRO TIP:  If you are making this for vegetarian friends, you could try some of the new beyond meat or Impossible burger, browned and mixed in the filling.  Make sure it's ok with them first though.

Nutrition

Calories: 155kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 27mg | Sodium: 386mg | Potassium: 148mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 2030IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 209mg | Iron: 1mg