Three Cheese Stuffed Shells Recipe

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Three Cheese Stuffed Shells are a delicious twist on lasagna using jumbo shells that are stuffed with the classic lasagna cheese blend with Italian seasoning all baked in spaghetti sauce for a classic Italian dish. A tried and true family favorite dinner!
 
Shell pasta is always a favorite at our house. If you love Italian as much as I do try these shell dinners are sure to please your family: Chicken Broccoli Garlic Alfredo Shells, Cheesy Chicken, Asparagus, Bacon and Mushroom Shells or Three Cheese Mexican Shells.
The best three cheese stuffed pasta shells recipe on a plate by The Recipe Critic
 

Best Three Cheese Stuffed Shells Recipe

You really can’t go wrong with a good lasagna. Rich red spaghetti sauce, Italian seasoning and lots of cheese all layered between pasta noodles… It’s heavenly! But when I feel like something EXTRA cheesy, I make these stuffed shells! They are similar to your classic lasagna, but with a triple dose of cheese and stuffed inside a jumbo pasta shell.

This Italian cheese stuffed shells is all things delicious.

What you need to make Stuffed Pasta Shells:

This delicious cheese stuffed shells recipe comes together quickly and easily. You can’t go wrong with baking stuffed shells with all the

Before you bake the shells, add more red sauce on top and extra cheese. You can never have enough cheese! After about 40 minutes in the oven, you will have an incredible Italian dinner that is sure to be a big hit! I like to serve these with a nice salad and garlic bread, and they make a beautiful presentation for guests too!

  • Jumbo Pasta Shells
  • Ricotta Cheese
  • Mozzarella Cheese
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • Basil
  • Italian Seasoning
  • Egg
  • Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Spaghetti Sauce 

How to Make Cheese Stuffed Shells:

And this recipe really couldn’t be any simpler to make: Boil the pasta shells until just shy of al dente (I did 9 minutes). Mix together all the yummy cheeses along with some seasoning, fresh basil for color and extra flavor, and an egg to bind it all together. Then spread your favorite red sauce in the bottom of a baking dish, stuff your shells with the cheese mixture, and add them to the dish. I usually take a shortcut and use a good pasta sauce from the grocery store, but feel free to use your favorite homemade recipe too! I have a spaghetti sauce recipe with Italian sausage that is out of this world!

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook pasta shells according to package directions for al dente, about 9 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the ricotta, 1 ½ cups of the mozzarella, parmesan, basil, Italian seasoning, egg, salt and pepper. Spread ¾ of the spaghetti sauce on the bottom of a 13×9 inch baking dish.
  3. Spoon the cheese mixture into the pasta shells and place in the baking dish. Pour remaining spaghetti sauce over shells and sprinkle with remaining mozzarella. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 5-10 minutes more.
The process of mixing the cheese in a bowl then stuffing the pasta shells and adding spaghetti sauce over top with cheese sprinkled.

What to Serve with Shell Pasta:

Stuffed shells taste great with bread warm from the oven. Serve them with buttery garlic bread or parmesan breadsticks. A crisp green salad with a zesty homemade vinaigrette is always welcome with any cheesy Italian dish like this.

The best three cheese stuffed shells baked in a pan and easily served with a spoon.

More Delicious and Comforting Pasta Meals:

Easy three cheese stuffed shells baked in a pan to enjoy by The Recipe Critic

Three Cheese Stuffed Shells Recipe

4.67 from 6 votes
Three Cheese Stuffed Shells are a delicious twist on lasagna using jumbo shells that are stuffed with the classic lasagna cheese blend with Italian seasoning all baked in spaghetti sauce for a classic Italian dish. A tried and true family favorite dinner!  
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Author Alyssa Rivers
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients
  

  • 20 uncooked jumbo pasta shells
  • 15 ounce container ricotta cheese
  • 8 ounces 2 cups grated mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped basil
  • 1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 – 26 ounce jar spaghetti sauce

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook pasta shells according to package directions for al dente, about 9 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water.
  • In a large bowl, combine the ricotta, 1 ½ cups of the mozzarella, parmesan, basil, Italian seasoning, egg, salt and pepper. Spread ¾ of the spaghetti sauce on the bottom of a 13×9 inch baking dish.
  • Spoon the cheese mixture into the pasta shells and place in the baking dish. Pour remaining spaghetti sauce over shells and sprinkle with remaining mozzarella. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for 5-10 minutes more.

Video

Notes

Updated on January 24, 2020
Original Post on August 21, 2013

Nutrition

Serves: 6

Calories414kcal (21%)Carbohydrates30g (10%)Protein26g (52%)Fat21g (32%)Saturated Fat13g (65%)Cholesterol101mg (34%)Sodium1298mg (54%)Potassium605mg (17%)Fiber3g (12%)Sugar7g (8%)Vitamin A1270IU (25%)Vitamin C9mg (11%)Calcium462mg (46%)Iron2mg (11%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian, Italian American
Tried this recipe?Mention @alyssa_therecipecritic or tag #therecipecritic
 

Alyssa Rivers

I am Alyssa and the blogger behind The Recipe Critic. I started my blog in June of 2012 as a place to share my passion for cooking. I love trying new things and testing them out with my family.

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  1. Do I need to bake these for longer if I prep them the night before and they are cold from being in the fridge?

  2. 4 stars
    Was good overall but a little too spicy. I’d say to cut down on the basil to 1 tablespoon since 2 tablespoons is a lot and pepper to 1/8 a teaspoon.

  3. 5 stars
    Amazing recipe, my picky kids even liked it! Super easy, fast. Bake some frozen meatball and served it with a salad. Definitely will be in rotation! Thank you

  4. Meat, no meat it’s all personal preference. Another option is to serve some large meatballs or Italian sausage, (simmered in sauce), on the side if you feel the need to include meat in your meal. Either way this sounds delicious!

  5. 5 stars
    This was an instant hit at our dinner table. All of the boys (3) plus my forth child (husband) loved this. I quickly made my own sauces with crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, diced onion, red and yellow peppers, Worcestershire, garlic, and salt and pepper. I went to three store for the large or jumbo shells and was unable to find them:( I bought manicotti noodles instead and filled those. I cannot wait to make these again!

  6. You used to have your pasta sauce with Italian sausage recipe on here but I can no longer find it. We love it! I’d love to have it, please!!

  7. Does this freeze well? Should I freeze the filling separately? Should it be frozen before or after cooking?
    I really want to try this but I am only one person. I would rather make the recipe and freeze some than cut the recipe.
    Thanks.

  8. I made a pan of these for my son’s co-Ed Ultimate Frisbee team’s carbo feed because some of the girls were vegetarian and they were a huge hit! The girls said it was some of the best pasta they had ever had! Also, my husband usually doesn’t love when I make a vegetarian meal at home but loves these. A big favorite and I don’t make any changes to it.

  9. Hi, I have been using a recipe every christmas and everyone loves it. I tried to search it on the internet every year and still cant find it. So I wonder maybe it is because it came from a very small town in viterbo , italy and my aunt showed me how to make them when I was very young. I call it cannelloni al formaggio. sure there are many types but not the way I make them. I wonder if I can make it a signature dish and have it posted as well? Thank you kindly.

  10. Hi! Could you please post the calories per serving for this recipe?
    Thanks!
    PS
    I added 2 chicken breasts & 1 thigh cooked & shredded and about 2.5 cups steamed spinach-mixed together- atop the sauce (before the shells). Delicious!

  11. Very easy to prepare. They are in the oven as I type :0) I can’t wait to try it! Its smells awesome as well. I love anything cheese and this has it all. I don’t eat alot of meat so this is perfect for me..

  12. Made this Stuffed Shells recipe for my daughter’s 1st Holy Communion and everyone LOVED it! Prepared and stuffed the day before. Baked day of. Delicious! THANK YOU! The photos you posted were very helpful also.

    1. That is great to hear! I am glad it was delicious and everyone loved it! Thanks for sharing! Xo

      Your Recipe Critic,
      Alyssa

  13. I am making this for dinner tonight as we love this recipe exactly as is. I do make the homemade spaghetti sauce from the recipe provided in the link. I use 1 Pound turkey Italian sausage and 1 Pound regular sweet Italian sausage so that provides plenty of protein and meat. The recipe is perfect as is but may consider adding spinach on a future batch to switch it up a little. We love this recipe and have made it several times for company who loved it as well and always get asked for the recipe.

  14. Tried this out on my friends last night. We all loved it 🙂 Simple to make.
    I used Barilla’s Traditional spaghetti sauce. And for the meat lovers, I served Aidell’s Italian Sausage on the side.
    Definitely a keeper!

  15. Used this recipe for a family dinner and it was fabulous! The adjustments I made to it were to add more basil and used a thirty ounce container of ricotta with a little parmesan instead of what the recipe called for. Had to bake it a little longer but it was totally worth it.

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