Easy Stuffed Shells Recipe
Easy Stuffed Shells Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Easy Stuffed Shells Recipe

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4.5 37 39
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I put this recipe together one day when we had unexpected guests. It was an immediate hit and is now a family favorite. Get the kids involved when putting together this simple, savory dish. —Dolores Betchner, Cudahy, Wisconsin
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Bake: 40 min.
MAKES:12 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Bake: 40 min.
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 36 uncooked jumbo pasta shells
  • 1 jar (24 ounces) spaghetti sauce
  • 36 frozen fully cooked Italian meatballs (1/2 ounce each), thawed
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Nutritional Facts

3 stuffed shells: 334 calories, 17g fat (8g saturated fat), 45mg cholesterol, 711mg sodium, 30g carbohydrate (6g sugars, 3g fiber), 16g protein.


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Cook pasta shells according to package directions; drain and rinse in cold water.
  2. Spread 1/2 cup sauce into a greased 13x9-in. baking dish. Fill each shell with a meatball; place over sauce. Top with remaining sauce and the cheese.
  3. Bake, covered, 35 minutes. Uncover; bake 3-5 minutes longer or until bubbly and cheese is melted. Yield: 12 servings.
Originally published as Easy Stuffed Shells in Taste of Home April/May 2009, p36

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Alaska11vy User ID: 8691699 261758
Reviewed Feb. 24, 2017

"Super easy recipe and my family loved it . This recipe is definitely a keeper !"

ebohuch User ID: 8820941 253550
Reviewed Sep. 2, 2016

"Made this a couple times with the latest being with my homemade marinara and homemade meatballs for my mother's birthday and it was a hit! I also put a bit of ricotta cheese in the shell before I stuffed it."

jinlorenza User ID: 6641107 252397
Reviewed Aug. 9, 2016

"This was bland and plain-tasting to me and my family. It needs more flavor. Would probably be much better with a homemade spaghetti sauce and homemade meatballs."

coconutpatty User ID: 3240781 246919
Reviewed Apr. 11, 2016

"This is a fun and tasty dish! My husband loved it and our company thought it was so clever to have meatballs in the shells. I took another person's suggestion and put a heaping teaspoonful of ricotta in each shell first. I also used my own meatball recipe and used almost two jars of sauce instead of one. Leftovers are great! This is a keeper."

lepleyracing User ID: 1497870 230349
Reviewed Jul. 29, 2015

"This was good and easy to make. I would definitely make this again. I did add 1/2 teaspoon of salt, pepper and oregano to the sauce and used cheddar and moz cheese as that is what I had on hand. We all enjoyed this but some did think it could have used a bit more sauce. I also put some shredded zucchini in the sauce too."

NH-rescue User ID: 4255840 113779
Reviewed Nov. 30, 2014

"easy to make, but not very spicy. Add seasonings or flavorful cheese for a different taste. Great way to use up extra spaghetti/pizza sauce. Can use homemade meatballs, made ahead of time or just for the recipe."

Remenec User ID: 6059530 167473
Reviewed Oct. 1, 2014

"This is an easy recipe that tastes delicious! My kids love lasagna, but since it's so time consuming I rarely make it. This dish tastes like lasagna but it's a third of the work! I added some sharp cheese along with the mozzarella and would add a little more sauce next time."

toolbarsco User ID: 6725667 210655
Reviewed Sep. 7, 2014

"This was so easy especially since I had some homemade spaghetti sauce in the freezer. The other really great thing is how you can play with the recipe (I suppose kids could play with the food itself) like adding ricotta cheese and spinach to each shell under the meatball. Easier than making lasagna!!"

[email protected] User ID: 77962 163119
Reviewed Sep. 2, 2014

"My 4-yr-old chose this recipe and proudly helped assemble it (he tired of it before we finished). Then he declared it "the best dinner ever!" The rest of us enjoyed it too. It was quick and easy and didn't leave many dirty dishes."

Beema User ID: 446601 210654
Reviewed Sep. 2, 2014

"Very clever idea... I used a vodka tomato sauce, added some slice mushrooms, and some capers. As a field editor, I am happy to rate this recipe 5 stars."

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