Spinach, Mushroom & Pepper Stuffed Shells Recipe

I love these "holiday" stuffed shells...  

They are festive looking, they feed a crowd, you can make them ahead, they freeze well and everyone loves them!  They're filled with lots of spinach, mushrooms and roasted red peppers…as well as three yummy cheeses!  Healthy veggies with just enough ooey gooey cheese - naughty & nice! 

Spinach, Mushroom & Pepper Stuffed Shells How-To:

Spinach, Mushroom & Pepper Stuffed Shells Recipe

Christina Verrelli - epicuricloud.com

Makes about 44 stuffed shells - about 8-10 servings                                                                                                     (You can split the recipe between two dishes and freeze one for later.)

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 sweet onion, chopped

8-ounces sliced crimini (baby bella) mushrooms, chopped

1 teaspoon garlic, minced

1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional

We've been enjoying this locally made sauce.

We've been enjoying this locally made sauce.

1 (12-ounce) jar roasted red peppers, drained & chopped

2 (10-ounce) boxes frozen chopped spinach, thawed & squeezed dry

1 (30-ounce) container ricotta cheese

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

1 egg

2 cups mozzarella, shredded & divided

2 (24-ounce) jars marinara sauce (or homemade)

1 (12-ounce) box jumbo shells pasta

salt & water for boiling pasta

Directions: 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Heat 6 quarts of salted (approx. 3-4 tablespoons kosher salt) water to boiling.

Add oil to large skillet over medium heat.  Add onion, mushrooms, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to pan.  Cook, stirring frequently, for about 8 minutes or until softened.  Add peppers, spinach and stir until well combined.  Turn off heat and allow to cool a bit.

Cook your pasta for about 9 minutes (a little less than the box states).  They will cook more in the oven.  Drain your pasta and pour onto a greased rimmed baking sheet.  This will allow them to cool a bit and not stick together.   

In large bowl (also mixes well in stand mixer) combine ricotta, Parmesan, egg and 1 cup of the mozzarella.  Stir to mix.  Stir in the spinach mixture.

Pour about 1 1/2 cups marinara sauce in bottom of 13" x 9" x 2" baking dish and spread evenly.

Fill each shell with about 2-3 tablespoons filling.  Arrange them in pan.  (I like to fit them in a single layer of about 34 shells, then, make a separate little dish of them to freeze or bake separately.)

Spoon another 1 1/2 cups sauce over filled shells and sprinkle with remaining 1 cup cheese.

Cover dish with foil.  Bake covered for about 40-45 minutes.  Remove foil and cook for another 10-15 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Serve with extra warmed marinara sauce on the side.

Notes:

To Freeze: assemble, wrap well and freeze.  I like to thaw them in the refrigerator overnight before I bake them. 

Printable Recipe Link: Spinach, Mushroom & Pepper Stuffed Shells

Thank you for spending some time in the cloud with me!  Happy Holidays to you and yours!  Tina ( :