Crockpot Stuffed Shells


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Crockpot Stuffed Shells are incredibly easy to make and your whole family will love them!

Tender pasta shells stuffed with a mixture of cheeses and frozen spinach. They’re smothered in pasta sauce and cooked in a slow cooker for a set it and forget it kind of meal!

A serving of stuffed pasta shells with a crockpot in the background.

Stuffed shells are a handy dish perfect for make-ahead convenience. They freeze well and reheat like a dream for those busy weeknights when you don’t have time to fuss with dinner preparation.

How to Make Stuffed Shells

Everyone loves cheesy stuffed shells and cooking them in the slow cooker while you’re running errands allows you to come home to a ready meal.

  1. MIX the filling ingredients (per recipe below).
  2. STUFF the filling into cooked pasta shells.
  3. LAYER with sauce in a slow cooker and cook until filling sets and shells are tender.

Be sure to serve sprinkled with cheese and maybe even some cheesy garlic breadsticks or a loaf of french bread to sop up any sauce!

Left image - crockpot stuffed shells filling ingredients in a glass bowl. Right image - filling ingredients combined in a glass bowl.

Variations

  • Veggies: Add any kind of veggies you’d like from steamed broccoli to chopped peppers or even sauteed mushrooms.
  • Meat: Hot or sweet Italian sausage, ground beef or soy crumbles can be added to the cheese mixture or to the sauce. If you do decide to use meat, be sure to pre-cook and cool before adding to the cheese.
  • Cheese: These stuffed shells are made with cottage cheese for more flavor. But if you like a milder and sweeter taste, then use ricotta instead. Either one works well in this recipe.

Left image - stuffed pasta shells on a layer of pasta sauce in a crockpot. Right image - finished crockpot stuffed shells.

How to Freeze Stuffed Shells

To freeze for a later meal, cool and carefully transfer each shell into a foil pan. Pour the sauce on top, cover and freeze. Stuffed shells will keep for up to four months in the freezer or four days in the refrigerator.

Cooking from Frozen

Stuffed pasta shells stored in a foil pan can go straight from the freezer to the oven without having to worry about thawing ahead of time.

  • Reheat at 350°F for an hour, with a foil cover on.
  • Remove the cover 15 minutes before the end and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.

While it’s reheating, you can relax or whip up some simple side dishes to serve alongside.

Serve With…

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.

Crock Pot Stuffed Shells on a white plate garnished with parsley
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Review Recipe

Slow Cooker Stuffed Shells

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Author Holly Nilsson
Course Main Course, Pasta
Cuisine American
They freeze well and reheat like a dream for those busy weeknights when you don’t have time to fuss with dinner preparation.

Ingredients

Filling
  • 3 cups cottage cheese or ricotta cheese
  • 1 package spinach drained and squeezed dry
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese shredded & divided
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese grated, divided
  • 2 eggs lightly beaten
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

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Instructions

  • Cook shells al dente according to package directions. Rinse in cold water and drain well.
  • Combine cottage cheese, spinach, ½ cup mozzarella cheese, ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, eggs, and seasoning. Stuff mixture into cooked shells.
  • Place ½ cup sauce in the bottom of a 6QT slow cooker. Line with half of the shells and top with 1 cup of pasta sauce. Repeat layers.
  • Sprinkle with cheese and cook on high 2-3 hours or on low 3-4 hours. Garnish with parsley if desired.

Recipe Notes

Note these can be baked at 350°F for 35 minutes in a 9x13 pan.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 383, Carbohydrates: 40g, Protein: 35g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 87mg, Sodium: 1457mg, Potassium: 670mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 10g, Vitamin A: 1031IU, Vitamin C: 9mg, Calcium: 579mg, Iron: 2mg
Keyword crockpot stuffed shells

 

Easy Crockpot Pasta Dishes

 

Finished crockpot stuffed shells.
A serving of stuffed pasta shells with a crockpot in the background.
A serving of stuffed pasta shells with a crockpot in the background.

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Holly

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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

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