These three cheese Stuffed Shells are filled with creamy ricotta, mozzarella, and parmesan cheeses, then baked in a simple tomato basil sauce. It’s the perfect comfort meal that feeds a crowd!
Though they will never be as popular as mac and cheese, stuffed shells are one of the best comfort foods ever,
How to Make Stuffed Shells:
Start by mixing together your filling, which consists of whole milk ricotta, shredded mozzarella, grated parmigiano reggiano, eggs, fresh basil, and some salt and pepper:
In my experience, the mainstream ricottas that have stabilizer ingredients like Carageenan, Xanthan Gum, Guar Gum, and Locust Bean Gum typically taste terrible and don’t hold up well with cooking. The gums are there to keep the moisture from separating out on the shelf, but often when cooked in the oven, these stabilized ricottas separate and you get pools of liquid and grainy cheese. When purchasing ricotta, I look to see that the ingredients are simple: dairy, enzymes, salt.
Parboil some jumbo shells, then spoon your filling into each shell
Nestle the shells snuggly in a pan with tomato sauce on the bottom
Then pour more sauce on top, and top it with torn pieces of fresh mozzarella, and freshly grated parmesan cheese:
Bake in the oven until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese has melted:
Then, I love to drizzle with a really good extra virgin olive oil and fresh basil. Enjoy!
Can Stuffed Shells be Frozen? Yes, but you want to bake it completely first. Let cool, then freeze for up to two months. Thaw before reheating.
Can Stuffed Shells be Made Ahead? Yes, but you want to make sure you don’t add the tomato sauce, or else it will break down the pasta. Parcook and stuff all the shells, and refrigerate up to 1 day. Then add the tomato sauce before baking.
How Long Stuffed Shells last in the fridge: Leftovers will keep in the fridge for 3-4 days.
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