Monday, August 20, 2012

Spinach & Cheese Stuffed Shells


I love making my own spaghetti sauce, but we always end up with a ton of it. This last time, I froze some, but with the little leftover I had, I wanted something different that wasn't just spaghetti noodles. While grocery shopping, the shells were calling my name when I went down the pasta aisle. I scanned several recipes online just to get the general idea about what to stuff inside. I used one whole box of shells, but ran out of filling, so I suggest doubling the spinach/cheese filling.

1 10oz pkg frozen spinach (thawed)
15 oz. Ricotta cheese
1 c. grated Parmesan
2 tbsp. chopped fresh basil 
3 garlic cloves, minced
Salt and pepper to season
3 cups marinara sauce (whatever is your favorite)
Mozzarella cheese
Jumbo pasta shells, cooked

Squeeze dry the thawed frozen spinach. 
Transfer spinach to large bowl. Add Ricotta, 1/2 cup Parmesan, fennel, basil and garlic to bowl. Season mixture with salt and pepper; blend.
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Spoon 1/2 cup marinara sauce evenly over bottom of a rectangular baking dish. Fill each pasta shell with spinach mixture. Place shells, filling side up, in dish. Spoon remaining sauce over shells. Sprinkle with rmozzarella cheese. Cover loosely with foil and bake until heated through, about 30-40 minutes.