These oil-free spinach and ricotta stuffed shells provide all of the flavor of your favorite Italian food, without the fat and oil.
Finding healthy Italian food used to be a challenge. Everything is made with olive oil and filled or topped with greasy cheese. The thing is, the oil and grease do not enhance the flavors of the tomatoes, basil, thyme, garlic, it smothers them.
The almond-based ricotta cheese is as creamy and delicious as the milk-based cheese.
Tol make the ricotta cheese you just need a blender.
The recipe calls for blanched almonds, these are the ones that come with the skin already removed, so they are white instead of brown. You can use whole almonds or slivered almonds, as long as they are blanched and have the skins removed.
Then you will cook a package of frozen chopped spinach and drain it well, squeezing out the excess water.
From here, cook up your pasta shells and put it all together.
Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Shells
- 2 cups blanched almonds
- 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup plant-based milk
- 1 box large pasta shells
- 10 oz package frozen chopped spinach
- 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1 jar marinara sauce, preferably fat free
- optional: fresh basil, vegan parmesan cheese
- Make ricotta cheese by combining ingredients in blender and blend until almonds are small granules, but not creamy. Transfer to small bowl and set aside.
- Cook spinach according to package directions. Drain in a colander. Once cooled, squeeze out excess water.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Cook pasta shells according to package directions. Drain and allow to cool.
- Combine ricotta, spinach, and all seasonings in a mixing bowl.
- Use a soup spoon to fill the shells with the ricotta-spinach mixture. Place the shells in a baking dish up against each other.
- Pour the marinara sauce over the shells, covering thoroughly.
- Cover baking dish with foil and bake for 20-30 minutes. Top with fresh basil or vegan parmesan cheese before serving.