Cheesy Shell-Stuffed Shells





This is something beyond the usual stuffed pasta. And the sauce....mmmmm. The vodka sauce is a great addition here, it has such a great flavor. Also a great meatless dish, if you need one.

Deconstructed,this dish consists of these great big pasta shells....full of tiny pasta shells, oozing out with the incredible taste of Gruyere cheese. You could substitute the Gruyere with another, less expensive cheese, but I wouldn't. It has such a great flavor and I love the way Gruyere strings out after it melts.

The recipe also calls for a vodka sauce. Emeril makes a great bottled variety sold in grocery stores...it's really good and helps make this recipe taste fantastic!!

Make it soon, you'll love it!


Preheat oven to 350o F. Cook jumbo shells according to package directions. Using a large slotted spoon, transfer shells to a colander. Rinse with cold water; drain well and set aside. In same pan cook tiny shells according to package directions. Drain; set aside.


Meanwhile, in a large saucepan combine Gruyere cheese, cheddar cheese, half-and-half and pepper. Heat over medium-low heat until cheese is melted and smooth, stirring frequently. Stir in tiny shells.


Spread 1/2 cup of the pasta sauce in the bottom of a 3-quart rectangular baking dish. Spoon cheese-shell mixture into drained jumbo shells; place stuffed shells in prepared baking dish. Top with remaining pasta sauce.


Bake, covered, for 30 minutes. Uncover and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Bake, uncovered, about 15 minutes more or until heated through. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.


Top with fresh basil and serve.

Print Recipe

Cheesy Shell-Stuffed Shells

Recipe from: Cathy Pollak | Serves: 6-8

Ingredients

  • 24 dried jumbo shell macaroni
  • 8 oz (2 cups) dried tiny shell macaroni
  • 2 cups (8 oz) shredded Gruyere cheese
  • 2 cups (8 oz) shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese
  • 3/4 cup half-and-half
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 jar (24 oz) vodka pasta sauce
  • 4 oz (1 cup) shredded, mozzarella cheese
  • fresh basil leaves for garnish

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cook jumbo shells according to package directions. Using a large slotted spoon, transfer shells to a colander. Rinse with cold water; drain well and set aside. In same pan cook tiny shells according to package directions. Drain; set aside.
  • Meanwhile, in a large saucepan combine Gruyere cheese, cheddar cheese, half-and-half and pepper. Heat over medium-low heat until cheese is melted and smooth, stirring frequently. Stir in tiny shells.
  • Spread 1/2 cup of the pasta sauce in the bottom of a 3-quart rectangular baking dish. Spoon cheese-shell mixture into drained jumbo shells; place stuffed shells in prepared baking dish. Top with remaining pasta sauce.
  • Bake, covered, for 30 minutes. Uncover and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Bake, uncovered, about 15 minutes more or until heated through. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Top with fresh basil and serve.

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Post a Comment

27 Comments

  1. Dana 1

    I love the idea of big shells impregnated with baby shells!

    Reply
  2. Now there is an innovative idea Cathy.

    Reply
  3. lori 3

    I saw that recipe in BHG and it has my husband’s name all over it. Can’t wait to make it!

    Reply
  4. I would put up with my lactose intolerance problems to eat this.

    Reply
  5. Cassie 5

    Come to MAMA!!!!!!

    Reply
  6. Fallon 6

    My mouth is watering. This looks absolutely amazing!

    Reply
  7. Julie 7

    I knew I was going to be sorry for clicking that link as hungry as I am. Yummy!

    Reply
  8. nina 8

    I look at all the quick meals you prepare and in my head I see how you juggle your time btween the vineyard and the kitchen. You are an inspiration!!

    Reply
  9. Sanura 9

    Stuffed shells was a popular lunch served in our school cafeteria. Of course, your version is much better. Thanks for the memories!

    Reply
  10. Lea Ann 10

    This is a great recipe. Quick and ooey-gooey delicious. Another bookmarked.

    Reply
  11. Jim 11

    Gotta find a way to incorporate bacon. Maybe add some crumbles to the vodka sauce.

    Reply
  12. Yum!!!! My kiddos are coming home next weekend, and they will love this!

    Reply
  13. Wow. That’s a lotta pasta. Shells in shells. I’m dying for that cheese sauce. It’s a nice change from the standard ricotta filling!

    Reply
  14. Dawn 14

    I saw this in the October BHG magazine as the “Prize Tested Recipe” winner. It looked good, but I was hesitant to try it as I’m not a huge vodka sauce fan. I’ll try Emeril’s! I’m sure all 3 of my children will love it, and it’s EGG-FREE which is a requirement for us due to allergies. Thanks for the info.

    Reply
  15. Mmm, I love vodka sauce. What a great idea to put it on baked shells.

    Reply
  16. Biz 16

    Love the idea of this! And I agree, sometimes you have to splurge on the good cheese every once in a while!

    Reply
  17. Just wanted to say that I am impressed with how prolific you are with your blog. I am an Oregonian too, so hope to get over to your winery sometime soon to pick up some wine. I have a link to your blog on my blog so my friends should be visiting too. Keep up the great work. L

    Reply
  18. Marjie 18

    Stuffing shells with shells? Who’d’ve ever dreamed it’s possible? Now I’m hungry!

    And one of these days I’m going to figure out how to make my own vodka sauce, besides the obvious…

    Reply
  19. Dawn 19

    So, I tried it with Emeril’s vodka sauce, and I added a few things: Italian sausage, garlic, shallots, and crushed red pepper. It was fantastic! I posted my version of it on my blog (and gave kudos to you.) link to learningasisew.blogspot.com

    Reply
  20. oh my god this looks amazing, I’ve had a crazy craving for pasta lately

    Reply
  21. bettyl 21

    Great recipe…something I never thought to do!

    Reply
  22. Erinn 22

    Vodka sauce is my favorite! I could eat it like soup. It’s finally cool in Los Angeles, this could be perfect for supper tonight!

    Reply
  23. Vanessa 23

    Holy cow! I made this, this weekend, and it was as amazing as it sounds! I made my own vodka sauce though – Definitely keeping this recipe in my files and have already shared with others!!

    Reply
  24. Gruyere? I would have never thought of using Gruyere in pasta~ so good… I love the photo with all the cheese melting on top -WOW! Why didn’t I know about you blog…love it

    Reply
  25. Kristen 25

    I have been obsessing over this dish since you first posted it. I have a tried and true stuffed shells recipe that I love but this one blows my mind! Jumbo shells exploding with baby shells… and your photos make it look so darn amazing! I’ve never tried vodka sauce, the thought of sauce tasting like vodka has always turned me off, but this post has prompted me to give it a go!

    LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog!

    Reply
  26. Oh my cheesy goodness! This looks fabulous! Another one to put on the list for this weekend!

    Reply
  27. corinne 27

    Well this was delicious! And went great before the pie with mini pies in it=)

    Reply

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