Every once in a while I want something meatless, something that also doesn’t take a lot of time to prepare. Whether you’ve been at work all day or had a long day at appointments etc., you want to spend as less time in the kitchen as possible. This meal that I’m sharing with you today is not only delicious but also doesn’t take too long to prepare or cook. If your kids aren’t big fans of spinach, mixed together with Ricotta they might actually enjoy this. Today I bring to you our Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Shells. It’ll be a hit with your family and you.
Yields: 4 servings
Prep time: 15 minutes | Cook Time: 35 minutes | Total time: 50 minutes
Here’s what you’ll need:
16 jumbo pasta shells + a few extra shells to allow for breakage while pasta is cooking
1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons garlic, minced
4 cups (packed) fresh spinach leaves, roughly chopped
12 oz. ricotta cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving
1 large egg
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 ½ cups marinara sauce
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Cooke the pasta al dente, according to directions on packaging. Drain and set aside.
2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook until it begins to brown (less than 2 minutes). Add the spinach and cook, stirring occasionally, until the leaves begin to wilt but still bright green in color. The spinach should be reduced by half. Remove from the heat and let cool.
3. In a mixing bowl, stir together the spinach, ricotta, mozzarella, Parmesan, egg and salt and pepper until thoroughly combined. Pour ½ cup of the marinara sauce into the bottom of a shallow 9×9 baking dish. Stuff each pasta shell generously with spinach and ricotta mixture, and place in baking dish.
4. Cover with remaining sauce and bake covered with aluminum foil for 25 minutes. Remove the foil and continue baking until the top begins to brown and the sauce begins to bubble, another 10-15 minutes. Serve warm with a sprinkle of Parmesan.
Note: This dish can be made a day in advance. Keep refrigerated until ready to cook – use same temperature, but add 10-15 additional minutes to cooking time.