Are you looking for quick dinner ideas for your family? These no-bake spinach stuffed shells are perfect! Not only is this dish easy to make, but great for entertaining!
As a mom of 4, I’m always trying to find easy, yet healthy dinners to feed my family. It’s not easy with a busy schedule to put a hot homemade dinner on the table. Not easy doesn’t mean impossible, and I try my best to make it happen at least 6 days a week.
Making no-bake stuffed shells
We don’t always want to turn on the oven, and surprisingly these stuffed shells turn out great right on the stovetop! All you need is a large skillet with a lid or a cast-iron casserole dish like this one!
You will start off by boiling the pasta. I like to pull it out right before it’s finished so the pasta doesn’t get too soft when it’s cooking with the lid on. I don’t know about anyone else, but I REALLY don’t like smushy pasta!
The other thing I like to do is sautee the spinach for just a couple minutes in a small skillet with salt, pepper, and fresh garlic. Spinach brings a lot to the table in nutrition, but not much in flavor!
Some health benefits of spinach are:
- High in vitamin A & K.
- Good source of fiber and magnesium
- Helps prevent cancer
- Strengthens bones and aids in healthy skin.
- Helps prevent acne and anti-aging
These are just some of the benefits of spinach! I love adding it into dishes because it doesn’t have a strong flavor which makes it kid-friendly! If you have a picky eater try chopping the spinach finely before serving it. By doing this it will help avoid long stringy pieces that a kid may not like.
After cooking the spinach a couple of minutes to give it some flavor, let it cool a couple of minutes and stir it into the ricotta mix. Strain the shells, stuff, and cover. In just a few minutes you will have a hot and bubbly delicious stuffed shell dinner! I like to serve it with fresh out of the oven Crusty Artisan Bread.
For other dishes using spinach check out these kid-friendly Popeye Pancakes!
No-Bake Spinach Stuffed Shells
- Large skillet or casserole skillet with lid
- 1 box shells cooked according to directions on the box
- 24 oz whole milk ricotta cheese
- 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 cup Shredded Mozzarella Cheese + a half cup to sprinkle on top
- 1 ½ teaspoon pink salt or sea salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 2 tablespoon fresh basil chopped thin or 1 ½ teaspoon dry basil
- 1 egg
- 3 cups spinach leaves roughly chopped and sauteed with garlic
- 3 cloves fresh garlic grated
- 1 jar Marinara Sauce
- Cook pasta al dente according to directions on the box. Drain and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl combine cheeses, egg, chopped basil, salt and pepper. Set aside.
- In a small skillet over medium heat place a tablespoon of oil in a skillet and sautee spinach for 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. After spinach is wilted, grate in garlic and sautee and stir for another minute. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
- Stir spinach into ricotta mix.
- In the bottom of a large skillet or casserole skillet spread a cup of marinara sauce.
- With a spoon stuff the shells with the ricotta mixture and place in the prepared skillet making a circle around the edges and working your way in. You may have a few extra shells left over.
- Once all the shells are stuffed and placed in the pan pour the remaining sauce on top and sprinkle with a ½ cup of mozzarella cheese.
- Place lid on the skillet and cook over medium-low heat for about 25 minutes.