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Ricotta stuffed shells are an easy, hearty, and classic Italian comfort food that can feed the whole family. Easy to make ahead and freeze for another day. |

Stuffed Shells

  • Author: Sam Hu | Ahead of Thyme
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 16 shells
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Ricotta stuffed shells are an easy, hearty, and classic Italian comfort food that can feed the whole family. Easy to make ahead and freeze for another day. 


  • 16 jumbo pasta shells
  • 3 cups marinara sauce, homemade or store-bought
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese

For the cheese filling:

  • 1 + 1/2 cups ricotta cheese (14 ounces/400 grams)
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 375F.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add pasta jumbo shells and cook until al dente (fully cooked but still firm) according to package directions, about 8-10 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent the pasta from sticking to the pot.
  3. Drain and rinse the jumbo shells under cold water to cool off completely and set aside in the pot.
  4. In a medium mixing bowl, combine all three kinds of cheese, egg, parsley, salt, and pepper. Mix well until smooth.
  5. Use a cookie scoop to stuff each cooked pasta shell with approximately 1/3 cup of the cheese mixture. In an 8-inch square casserole pan, add and spread marinara sauce evenly. Place the stuffed shells on top and sprinkle with a layer of mozzarella cheese.
  6. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and broil until the cheese turns golden brown, about 2-3 minutes.
  7. Garnish with parsley and serve warm.


How to freeze uncooked stuffed shells: Assemble the shells (until just before baking), then cover tightly with aluminum foil and freeze for up to 3 months. You can bake the shells directly from frozen and add an extra 30 minutes to the cook time.

How to store: Store ricotta stuffed shells in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4-5 days. Allow the stuffed shells to cool completely before storing them to avoid condensation.

How to freeze cooked stuffed shells: You can also freeze cooked stuffed shells. Store them all together in an airtight container or portion them out into individual-sized meal prep containers and freeze for up to 3 months.

How to reheat: You can reheat cooked stuffed shells in a 350 F preheated oven for 10-15 minutes until warmed through. You can also reheat in the microwave on low to medium heat for several minutes.

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Category: Pasta
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: stuffed shells, ricotta stuffed shells, stuffed shells with ricotta, jumbo shells with ricotta, stuffed jumbo shells, jumbo shell casserole