My mom and I made some Stuffed Pasta Shells today for dinner. Here are the step-by-step directions (with pictures) on how to make them!
1 1/2 lbs of organic ground beef
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 cup onion, diced fine (optional)
1/4 – 1/2 cup of fresh chopped baby spinach (optional)
8 oz. block/ball of mozzarella cheese (yields about 2 cups shredded)
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup of Italian bread crumbs
1/8 tsp of sea salt
1/8 tsp of pepper
1/4 cup of parmesan cheese, shredded or grated
1/2 tsp of Italian seasoning
1 box of Jumbo Pasta Shells
1-2 jars of your favorite spaghetti sauce (we like ours saucy)
First, start browning the ground beef in a frying pan. Chop up two cloves of fresh garlic and add to the ground beef in the frying pan.
We decided to add some chopped spinach for a healthy touch. These size pieces are great because the spinach will shrink up once it is cooked. This is optional.
Cook/mix the ground beef, garlic, and spinach (optional) all together till the meat is browned. Use the spatula to break the beef into smaller pieces. No one wants huge chunks of meat in their shells!
While the beef mixture is cooking, shred up some fresh mozzarella! If you do not feel like shredding your own, you can use 2 cups of pre-shredded mozzarella. Also, if you love cheese you may want to shred more to add. We love our cheese. The reason we did fresh is because it doesn’t have that powdery coating that the pre shredded cheese has so it melts, and tastes, better (at least that is what my mom says :)). Next, beat 2 eggs in a large bowl.
Once the meat is done browning, drain it in the sink. Add the meat into the large bowl with the eggs. Then, add the shredded mozzarella cheese leaving a little bit to sprinkle on top the shells later. Add 1/2 cup of Italian bread crumbs, 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese, 1/8 tsp of sea salt, 1/8 tsp of pepper, and 1/2 tsp of Italian seasoning. I added a little bit (2-3 tablespoon) of spaghetti sauce to the mixture to add a little flavor. Mix everything together with a spoon.
Next, boil the jumbo pasta shells according to package directions. Drain them and lay them out to dry/cool for a couple minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350°F/176°C.
Sometimes you get shells that rip when they are being boiled :(. You won’t be able to use those little guys sadly.
Add some spaghetti sauce in the bottom of the pan.
Once, the shells are cooled, stuff them full of the meat/cheese mixture and lay them filling side up in the pan.
Sprinkle some of the mozzarella cheese on top of each shell (don’t use it all yet, save some for sprinkling again later).
Cover the shells in some more spaghetti sauce and then cover dish with foil. Bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes. Take the pan out of the oven and sprinkle the rest of the mozzarella cheese on top (and parmesan cheese too if you want) and bake for another 10 minutes until cheese is melted and shells are hot and bubbly.
THE FINISHED PRODUCT! 😀
Can someone say…. YUMMY?!
Time to enjoy some delicious “Meat Stuffed Jumbo Pasta Shells!”