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Nothing more comforting or delicious than veggie and cheese Alfredo Stuffed Shells! So creamy, buttery, and delicious.
Alfredo Stuffed Shells
Alfredo Stuffed Shells is a great option to add into your dinner rotation that is filled with lots of protein and veggies galore while still being so amazingly butterific!! How is that possible you ask? Homemade alfredo sauce. If you’ve never made homemade alfredo sauce before, giiiiirl get on it! It is one of the simplest things to make and is approximately 1400 times better than store-bought. I figure the stuffed shell filling is so healthy that I can afford to be a little more generous with my homemade buttery alfredo 😉
The Alfredo Stuffed Shells filling is vegetarian, made with low-fat cottage cheese, onion, garlic, asparagus, squash, roasted red peppers, and kale. Super duper healthy 🙂 Of course you can make this filling however you like, and based on what you have in your fridge. More variations in the Recipe Tips section below.
The homemade alfredo sauce is made with Land O ‘Lakes Butter® with Olive Oil and Sea Salt (you can also just use regular salted butter), grated Parmigiano Reggiano (the real stuff), heavy cream, salt, and pepper. It takes about 5 minutes in total. Yet another reason to make it from scratch!!
Tips and Tricks
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- Veggies: As I mentioned above, you can use the veggies I listed OR use what you have on hand. As long as you cook them until they’re tender, you should be good to go. If I were to do it all again, I’d take it easy on the asparagus and add more roasted red peppers because I’m a little obsessed.
- Kale: I used frozen kale, however, kale doesn’t really soften like spinach would and you can’t really get rid of its texture. If you think you’d like a smoother filling, use spinach 🙂
- Cheese: In this Alfredo Stuffed Shells recipe, I go into detail about the cottage cheese getting blended up until smooth. (A high powered blender for a good 30 seconds works like a charm! I have this blender.) BUT, that’s just because I like a smoother creamy filling in my stuffed shells. You don’t have to blend the cottage cheese at all if you don’t want to. It’s just personal preference. Also: ricotta cheese could be substituted, though it is higher in calories and lower in protein. You do you, buttercup.
- Alfredo Sauce: I suppose you could use a jarred alfredo sauce, but why? Just make your own!
- Marinara Sauce: You could totally cover this with marinara (like my Classic Stuffed Shells Recipe) if you’d prefer a tomato sauce versus an alfredo. My kids despise tomatoes (except for Eddie!) and are more likely to eat a white creamy sauce…which they did!
How to make Stuffed Shells
I’ll walk you through my Alfredo Stuffed Shells step-by-step instructuions below as best as I can, but be sure to print out the recipe and read my tips! They are there to ensure you always have success with any recipe I’ve made 🙂
- So, start by chopping what vegetables you have on hand. You’re going to want about 2 1/2 cups total. I used onion, garlic, zucchini, yellow squash, asparagus, roasted red pepper, and frozen kale (not pictured).
- Sautee the veggies in 2 tablespoons of Land O ’Lakes® Butter with Olive Oil and Sea Salt until tender, about 10 minutes.
- Stir the veggies in with the other filling ingredients: low fat cottage cheese (that I blended to make smooth), Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, two eggs, salt, and pepper.
- Stuff those into some prepared shells and place into a buttered casserole dish. Set this aside for just a few minutes while we make the alfredo sauce.
- Now is time for the alfredo sauce. Melt butter in a large skillet. Once it is hot and melted, pour in cream and cheese and whisk – whisk – whisk until the cheese melts and you have a thick and smooth sauce. Add salt and pepper to taste and that is it. EASY.
- Pour this warm sauce over your stuffed shells and bake! Oh, hello gorgeous! After 30 to 40 minutes of baking, you should have a hot and bubbly pan or two of Alfredo Stuffed Shells.
- Did I mention this feeds a crowd? It makes 30 total stuffed shells. Hence the copious amounts of butter and cream. Mmmm….. After about 5 minutes, you can serve these babies up. I suppose you could serve them immediately, but they would be borderline hotter than the sun. Your call.
Luckily for you, Alfredo Stuffed Shells can be made ahead of time and frozen for later!
Freeze. To freeze, make the stuffing and stuff your shells. But don’t make the alfredo sauce yet (it doesn’t freeze particularly well. I’d recommend freezing in a disposable container, such as an aluminum casserole pan. Cover tightly with a layer of plastic wrap and then aluminum foil. Then freeze for up to 2 months!
Bake. When ready to bake transfer the stuffed shells to the fridge for at least 24 hours. Prepare the alfredo sauce while preheating the oven then cover the shells. Pop it in the oven and bake until hot and bubbly!
Chicken Alfredo Stuffed Shells
This is a vegetarian recipe but if you wanted to you could make Chicken Alfredo Stuffed Shells. Simply shred some cooked chicken (rotisserie chicken is a great option) and add it to the veggie mixture. It’s a great way to add in some protein without overwhelming the vegetables in the stuffing mix.
Make sure to cover alfredo stuffed shells and store them in the fridge for up to 3 days! Reheat in the oven or in the microwave.
More Recipes to Try!
- Chicken Bacon Alfredo Stuffed Spaghetti Squash
- Crockpot Pesto Stuffed Shells
- Browned Butter Alfredo Pasta
- Baked Ravioli Recipe with Brown Butter Alfredo
Anyways, be sure to grab the recipe card below and give this Alfredo Stuffed Shells recipe a whirl this week. Have a great day, friends!
Alfredo Stuffed Shells
- 12 oz box jumbo pasta shells*
for the Filling:
- 2 tablespoons Land O Lakes® Butter with Olive Oil and Sea Salt
- 1/2 large yellow onion finely diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced or grated
- 1 cup asparagus finely chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped zucchini
- 1/2 cup chopped yellow squash
- 1 roasted red pepper chopped
- 5 oz frozen kale
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon basil
- 3 cups low fat cottage cheese blended until smooth**
- 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
- 2 large eggs
- Salt & pepper to taste
For the Alfredo Sauce:
- 1 cup Land O Lakes® Butter with Olive Oil and Sea Salt
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 3 cups grated Parmigiano Reggiano
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Bring large pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta shells for 3/4 of the time on the package directions. Drain and set aside.
- While pasta is cooking, chop veggies and preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Cooking the filling: In a large skillet, melt Land O Lakes® Butter with Olive Oil and Sea Salt over medium-high heat. Sauté onion, garlic and asparagus for about 2 minutes before adding remaining vegetables and seasonings. Cook another 5-7 minutes or until tender. Pour into a bowl. Stir together with cottage cheese, Parmigiano Reggiano, eggs, salt and pepper.
- Fill each shell with one heaping tablespoon of filling and place into a buttered casserole dish. Set aside.
- Make the alfredo: Melt 1 cup Land O 'Lakes® Butter with Olive Oil and Sea Salt over medium heat. Once butter is hot and crackling, whisk in heavy cream, Parmigiano Reggiano, salt and pepper. Whisk over medium heat until cheese melts, sauce comes together and is smooth. Pour over prepared shells and top with any remaining Parmesan cheese (optional).
- Bake 30-40 minutes or until hot, bubbly and browned around the edges. Serve hot.
- *I make the entire 12 oz. box of shells just incase there are a few broken ones. You could count out 30 shells if you don't want to cook them all!**I blend my cottage cheese in a blender to make it creamy and smooth because I like that texture better than cottage cheese on its own. Feel free to use as is or substitute ricotta cheese.