Spinach & Ricotta Stuffed Shells

Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Pasta Shells recipe

Before a couple of weeks ago, I have never had Stuffed Shells. I’ve pinned many tempting recipes, but never stepped out of my “pasta comfort zone” of penne or capellini.

Update: I recently merged The Everyday Domestic with The Bewitchin’ Kitchen and lost a lot of images. I am working on getting them back. Please be patient.


I recently went to Prince George (my closest form of city civilization) to visit my bestie, Katie. I hadn’t seen her since her wedding in September, so this visit was more then past due. We caught up over coffee, went over her gorgeous Project Life album and went shopping. It was much needed girl time, and since I left my son back with his grandparents it was also much needed “Randa time”. Even better, I didn’t have to cook dinner. Katie made a delicious dinner of Spinach & Ricotta Stuffed Shells, accompanied with wine from our favorite Okanagan winery (Silver Sage).

It sparked a new love for Stuffed Shells.

So last week I made my first attempt. I adapted this recipe from Fitness Magazine and it came out great.

Delicious Stuffed Shells Recipe

I changed a few things from the original recipe. I used hot italian sausage, but mild would work well as well. I like hot italian because I find not much needs to be done with seasonings to the over all dish, maybe that’s just me.

Prepare Hot Italian Sausage and Onions

Sauce For Stuffed Shells

I love the smell of onions cooking and with the addition of the italian sausage, my husband requested that I cook like this more often.

Chopped Spinach

Stuffed Shell Filling

The ricotta and spinach filling is amazing too, everything in this recipe came together so nicely.

Stuffed Shell Recipe

Delicious Stuffed Shells With Hot Italian Sausage

It looked almost looked professional at this point, I was pretty proud of myself. If you notice that some of the shells already have pasta on them, that’s because I made a mistake. Originally I tried to fit this in a 9×9 pan and that did not work. So I can to take the shells outs, transfer the bottom sauce to a 9×13 and then re arrange the shells. 9×13’s are the only way to go with this dish.

Ricotta Stuffed Shells

Spinach Stuffed Shells

They’re completely edible by this point, but I wanted to be extra bad and add some cheese. I thought the original recipe didn’t add it, but after re reading the recipe and comparing to what I did – it does. Good thing too, everything is better with a little bit of cheese.

Stuffed Shells Stuffed With Ricotta

There it is! Spinach & Ricotta Stuffed Shells! It’s really easy and tastes amazing. I’m going to be playing around with more stuffed shell recipes in the future.

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Spinach & Ricotta Stuffed Shells


  • 20 jumbo pasta shells
  • 1 1/2 tsps olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 package of hot Italian sausage (cut off casings)
  • 1 14 ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 tsps sugar
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • Salt & Pepper (for seasoning)
  • 2 1/4 cups chopped spinach
  • 1 1/4 cup low fat ricotta
  • 1 cup part-skim mozzarella, shredded
  • 1 egg white


  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Cook the jumbo pasta shells as directed on the box. (Mine took 14 minutes.)
  3. While the shells are cooking, heat olive oil in pan and fry up hot italian sausage and onion together, over medium high heat. Cook until 3/4 way done and add garlic. When it’s cooked, transfer to a collander/strainer and let grease drain. There is no need to clean the pan completely of grease.
  4. Return the pan to heat and reduce to medium. Add crushed tomatoes, sugar and oregano. Season with salt and pepper and reduce to a simmer for about ten minutes.
  5. While this is simmering, grab a large bowl and combine your spinach, ricotta, egg white and a little bit of salt and pepper. Set aside.
  6. Add sausage mixture back to the pan. Taste and adjust Seasonings.
  7. Spray a 9×13 pan with non stick cooking spray and spoon half of the tomato and sausage sauce over the bottom.
  8. When you shells are cooked, rinse with cold water and dry with a paper towel. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of the ricotta mixture into the jumbo pasta shells. I used about 19 – 20 shells. Arrange in the baking dish and top with remaining sauce.
  9. Bake for twenty minutes, and then take out and add mozzarella. Bake for another then. If cheese isn’t bubbly and brown, turn on your broiler for a few minutes.

Adapted from Fitness Magazine.

All images and text ©.

If you like this recipe, please feel free to share it and “Pin it”.

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Randa Derkson

I believe that the kitchen is the heart of the home. Whether it’s discussing your day, sharing the highlights of your trip, or just having quality time with a loved one; lives are brought together at the kitchen table.

36 comments on “Spinach & Ricotta Stuffed Shells”

  1. These look great and would work well all veggie too!

  2. Those look so yummy!!! I usually make vegetarian stuffed shells, but good idea with the meat!

    Yay for the SITS Girls for helping me find your blog!

  3. Oh my goodness!!! It looks SOOOOOO delicious!!!! I want some right now! haha
    P.S. The photography is GREAT!!

  4. This looks really good. Love using sausage as well

  5. This looks so yummy. I have been looking for some new and fairly simple recipes as I feel like we are eating the same thing all the time. Will have to give this a try!

  6. That looks heavenly!! All I have to do now is find some huge gluten free noodles!! I can’t wait! YUM

  7. Looks great!!! 🙂

  8. This looks delicious. I want to give this a try. I love pasta and have been looking for a way to try different types of pasta.

  9. This looks delicious and your photos are great too. I’m hungry now. Commenting from SITS

  10. that looks delicious – I haven’t made stuffed pasta before, but I sure do love it..I might need to give this recipe a try!

  11. Can’t believe you’d never tried stuffed shells before! They are also great stuffed with Bolognese sauce – a new take on spag bol!

  12. Your stuffed shees look delish! I hope you have a nice Valentine’s Day! Found you from SITS and following on Twitter and Facebook – great blog!

  13. These look absolutely delicious! I have actually never made stuffed shells before, but my family loves pasta! Definitely will have to try them…pinned!

  14. I have stayed away from stuffed shells too, but it’s because I don’t like ricotta cheese. Last week I tried a lasagna recipe and subbed plain Greek yogurt for the ricotta and it was awesome!! Now I can try stuffed shells again!! I think my kids would enjoy this and I think I’ve got the ingredients on hand! Double bonus!!

  15. This looks so good! Stopping by from SITS.

  16. I’ve made stuffed shells before, but never quite like this! It looks super yummy! Definitely going on my meal plan!

  17. Wow, can you come cook for me please 😉

  18. These look great! Poppin’ by from SITS Comment Love Tribe. xx

  19. These look great! My husband wants to try going vegetarian for awhile and these look like something that could be easily adapted! I’ve pinned them for later!

  20. Yum! I’m going to try this either with shells or as a lasagna roll up. Stopping by from the SITS Girls.

  21. This looks delicious and easy. I’m going to give meal planning a try because I’m trying to lose weight so I appreciate when people share good recipes with beautiful pictures.

  22. We love stuffed shells. They are my usual Christmas dinner meal. This looks like a delicious change up to my usual plain recipe! Thank you!

  23. This looks so good. My hubby would love this. He can’t have food without meat. LOL. I would have to skip the onions though. I thought I was the only person that include ground sausage or ground beef with stuffed shells. Pinning this now.

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