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Recipe: Spinach and Cheese Stuffed Shells


This recipe for Spinach and Cheese Stuffed Shells is a basic one. The filling can be used to stuff shells, manicotti, layer baked ziti and lasagna. I encourage you to be creative… add ingredients you and your family like… change seasonings slightly… by changing it up … you can make your meals more interesting and not become bored with the same routine.

This recipe is quick and easy. You can prepare parts of it ahead and assemble it when you make it… or make it completely ahead and store it in the refrigerator and just bake it when you serve it. It makes a terrific and easy weeknight meal. You can also freeze it for later use also. How wonderful is that??

TIPS

A package of jumbo shells contains a large quantity of shells… you can either make as many as you need or... make the whole package (which is what I usually do).

I stuff them all the same and freeze the leftovers… or I save the cooked shells and stuff them with something else later in the week… it’s a great timesaver and makes for very inexpensive meals.

This recipe will stuff approximately half the shells in the package… if you want to use all the shells, just double the recipe.

Be sure to drain the spinach well… you don’t want excess water in your mixture.

In place of the Italian Seasoning you can use dried or fresh oregano, dried or fresh parsley, dried or fresh basil…. Italian seasoning usually also includes marjoram, sage and thyme…. add to taste…. if using dried herbs then start with about a teaspoon of oregano, parsley and basil each… and about ¼ teaspoon each of marjoram, sage and thyme.

This recipe is delicious… one your family is sure to love… I hope you enjoy it!






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Recipe: Spinach and Cheese Stuffed Shells

All you need:

1 package jumbo shells
15 ounce container part skim ricotta cheese
2 eggs
1 cup frozen spinach, cooked and drained
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 tablespoons Italian Seasoning
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
24 ounce jar of tomato sauce (or homemade)
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

All you need to do:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Spread a thin layer of tomato sauce on the bottom of a 13x9 baking dish. Set aside.

Prepare jumbo shells according to package directions.

Drain and allow to cool enough to handle.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, lightly beat the eggs.

Add the ricotta, spinach, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, Italian Seasoning, Parmesan cheese, and ½ cup mozzarella cheese to the egg mixture…mix well.

Stuff each shell with about 2 tablespoons of filling…place open side up in baking dish. Make sure to fill the shell as much as possible.

Drizzle tomato sauce over the top and reserve the rest of the sauce to serve at the table.

Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella cheese over the top of the shells.

Bake at 400 degrees F for about 25 minutes or until bubbly and cheese has melted.

4 comments:

girlichef August 16, 2009 at 9:26 PM  

This sounds delicious. I've been meaning to compile some recipes that will definitely freeze well since kids are back to school and I'll be working some evenings...easier on the hubby!

AnyEdge August 17, 2009 at 12:42 PM  

Looks awesome. Linda, I need some help:

I made a pesto using basil from my neighbor's garden (taken with permission!). I used basil, garlic, sunflower seeds and pine nuts, and olive oil. I have about 3 tablespoons.

What should I do other than put it on pasta?

Linda August 17, 2009 at 3:26 PM  

I like to smear pesto on a boneless skinless chicken breast and bake to for 20 minutes at 400 degrees F.... take it out of the oven and sprinkle shredded mozzarella cheese over it... bake it for another 5 minutes or until the cheese melts... this would also work on pork chops...

If you don't want to use meat... you can slice tomatoes and fresh mozzarella... layer them on a plate ...alternating slices... drizzle the pesto over them... makes a great light lunch or appetizer

AnyEdge August 17, 2009 at 6:49 PM  

Both sound great ! Thanks!

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