Those of us of a certain age grew up with stuffed shells and stuffed peppers as “gourmet” cooking back in the day. I remember how proud my mother was to present such an interesting way to serve a meal.
These Stuffed Shells with Ratatouille are an easy weeknight meal, ready in minutes and in this version, a vegetarian option. Just spoon the veggie mixture into each shell, and bake 12 minutes until the cheese melts. This version turns a French stew into a great way to add vegetables in a pasta dish.
- 20 jumbo pasta shells, cooked first, drained and cooled
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small chopped onion
- 1½ cups eggplant, peeled and diced
- 1 cup diced red bell pepper
- ¾ cup diced Zucchini & Yellow Squash
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- ¾ cup diced tomatoes, with as little juice as possible
- ½ cup canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 2 cups flavorful marinara sauce
- ½ cup chopped fresh basil (for cooking)
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- 1 cup shredded Italian 5-cheese blend (Parmesan, Fontina, Provolone, Asiago, Mozzarella) or any combo of these
- Extra Parmesan Cheese
- 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil (for topping)
How to Make Jumbo Stuffed Shells
- Preheat oven to 450°F.
- In boiling water, cook pre stuffed shells (8-10 minutes),
- Drain and let them cool to the touch.
- While the shells cool, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add onion and sauté 2 minutes.
- Add eggplant and bell pepper; sauté 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add zucchini, squash, tomato, garlic and chickpeas; sauté 2 minutes, stirring as needed
- Remove pan from heat; stir in 1 cup marinara, ½ cup basil, salt & pepper
- Spread remaining 3/4 cup marinara over bottom of baking dish.
- Spoon about 2 tablespoons vegetable mixture into each stuffed shell.
- Arrange filled shells in dish; sprinkle with the cheeses.
- Bake at 450°F for 12 minutes, uncovered, so the cheese melts
- Top Stuffed Shells with remaining 2 tablespoons basil.
If you like this dish, you should try My Dad’s Italian Meatball Recipe