Shells with Italian Sausage and Ricotta Stuffing Recipe
Shells with Italian Sausage and Ricotta Stuffing Recipe photo by Johnsonville®
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Shells with Italian Sausage and Ricotta Stuffing Recipe

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Shells and cheese can be a great snack, but Johnsonville can transform it into a meal! This recipe combines all of your favorite Italian cheeses with the savory deliciousness of Johnsonville Italian Sausages. The result? An authentic Italian dish that will leave your stomach full and happy.
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 45 min. Cook: 35 min.
MAKES:6 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 45 min. Cook: 35 min.
MAKES: 6 servings


  • 1 package (16 ounces) Johnsonville® Mild or Sweet Ground Sausage
  • 1 box (12.5 ounces) jumbo pasta shells
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 jars (24 ounces, each) marinara sauce
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 carton (15 ounces) ricotta cheese
  • 4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped or 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or 1 teaspoon dried parsley


  1. In a skillet, cook sausage over medium heat, until pork is no longer pink; drain.
  2. In a Dutch oven, cook pasta shells according to package directions; drain and rinse with cold water.
  3. Using a pastry brush, coat sides and bottom of a 3-quart baking dish with oil.
  4. Pour half of the marinara sauce into baking dish. In a large bowl, combine eggs, ricotta cheese, 2-1/2 cups of mozzarella, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, Romano cheese, basil, pepper and prepared sausage. Stuff shells with meat mixture; arrange in baking dish. Pour remaining marinara sauce over shells.
  5. Cover and bake at 350°F for 30 minutes. Uncover; sprinkle with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
  6. Bake 5 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with parsley. Serve. Yield: 6 servings.
Originally published as Shells with Italian Sausage and Ricotta Stuffing in Johnsonville® Sausage 2016

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kmcbane User ID: 2111465 220952
Reviewed Feb. 20, 2015

"To ktype: Maybe it's the brand or type of marinara sauce you are using. There really isn't anything in this recipe that would make the sauce too sweet."

captgeo5 User ID: 6856757 124929
Reviewed Oct. 31, 2014

"A nice switch from the normal stuffed shells , I used Oregano and only a little bit of Basil , I just love the Oregano flavor , thanks for sharing"

BoogerBones User ID: 8015236 121711
Reviewed Oct. 26, 2014

"Absolutely delicious!!! Used Jimmy Dean Italian sausage, very flavorful. Used gourmet Mario Batali marinara (from Costco). This made a ton. Will make again for sure!!!!!!"

ktype User ID: 4188985 197068
Reviewed Oct. 19, 2014

"Very ordinary.... Marinara sauce was way too sweet. Won't be making this again."

MaryAliceH User ID: 7877378 185447
Reviewed Oct. 12, 2014

"Delish!! I need to be very cautious with foods and can not have preservatives, MSG, etc so I didn't use the name brand sausage but used some made at a near by butcher. Maybe even better the next day!! Lots of cheese. My husband said he thought it was "way better" than he could get in a restaurant and definite keep the recipe!!"

Red Hat Milli User ID: 4954609 128074
Reviewed Oct. 10, 2014

"To deckerroad: I believe recipes from Johnsonville Sausage and others are a way of advertising. TOH has to cover the cost to bring this website to us FREE somehow and we get yummy recipes as well."

deckerroad User ID: 7054249 200693
Reviewed Oct. 9, 2014

"Haven't made this yet but sounds delicious and similar to a recipe I have. I am curious why the recipes this week have been from Johnsonville Sausage instead of reader submitted. Is this just another way to get advertising in? I would rather hear from people who have already made the dish."

AndreaMather User ID: 7896961 213708
Reviewed Oct. 9, 2014

"Made it... delish! Wasn't confused by the "meat mixture", it does have meat in it after all :-) Very Good Recipe!"

Dabockhold User ID: 6731130 191442
Reviewed Oct. 9, 2014

"I have a similar recipe and it is very delicious.....however in the directions it says to stuff the shells with the "meat mixture" should say stuff shells with the cheese mixture."

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