This stuffed pasta shells recipe is a nice autumn dish when winter squash is plentiful and cheap. Although you can eat it anytime since butternut squash is usually available in the market year-round in the United States.
This is a nice compact recipe that makes a nice main dish, and actually could almost be thought of like a casserole. These stuffed shells and associated ingredients have a little bit of everything in them and make a well-rounded dish. It could also be used for a side dish if you were entertaining a small group or to accompany your holiday main dish.
Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells Ingredients
lean pork sausage 225
gr pork sausage
1/2 butternut squash, peeled and cubed 400 gr butternut squash
1/4 cup milk 60 ml milk
1 cup spinach 1 cup spinach
2 cloves garlic, chopped 2 cloves garlic
5-6 pcs jumbo shells, cooked 5-6 pcs jumbo shells
1 egg, beaten (only use half) 1 egg
2 tbsp ricotta 30 gr ricotta
1/4 cup parmesan, shredded 25 gr parmesan
1 tbsp dry parsley 1 tbsp dry parsley
1 tsp chili flakes
(optional) 1 tsp
Pinch of salt
Pinch of pepper
Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells Directions
- Preheat the oven to 350 F
- drizzle butternut squash cubes with canola oil, gently toss until coated and spread evenly in a baking pan, place the baking pan in the oven for 30 minutes or until just starting to lightly brown
- While the squash is cooking, cook the sausage over medium heat in a medium skillet or non-stick pan. When sausage turning brown, add spinach and garlic. Add salt and pepper if desired. Cook until spinach is lightly wilted then remove from heat and set aside.
- Cook shells according to package directions until al dent—don’t overcook the shells. Place in cold water to stop cooking. Drain.
- Once the squash is cooked, place the cubes in a food processor or blender along with milk, salt, and pepper. Pulse until squash is pureed. Pour into a 6×6 baking dish.
- In mixing bowl, mix ricotta, parmesan, and egg until well-combined. Add dry parsley, chili flakes, and sausage mixture into ricotta and mix until evenly distributed.
- Fill cooked jumbo shells with 2 tablespoons of sausage mixture. Arrange shells in butternut squash sauce in the baking dish. Top with more parmesan.
- Bake for 30 minutes. Serve immediately.
- Makes two servings
- This recipe can be made with other winter squash or pumpkin depending on what you have readily available or happens to be cheap in the market place. If you’re going to use an alternative squash, try to pick one which is richly flavored and has a dark orange flesh on the inside.