Cara's Creamy Stuffed Shells
This is a unique perspective to boring ground-beef stuffed shells. You and everyone will love the taste of the meat and everyone will want to know your secret!
This is a unique perspective to boring ground-beef stuffed shells. You and everyone will love the taste of the meat and everyone will want to know your secret!
I've now made this a couple of times and recommend the following changes: Scale the recipe (if necessary), triple the sauce, double the garlic, add some italian seasoning, melt Mozarella on top instead of the Romano. Delicious! I look forward to making this many, many more times.Read More
Very unimpressive. A glorified (and much more expensive) version of Italian Style Hamburger Helper. Essentially a good meal, but be prepared to seriously tweak ingredients and amounts (specifically increase cream cheese, decrease meat and be creative with seasonings; even a novice in the kitchen would be able to come up with 25 ways to improve upon beef seasonings).Read More
I've now made this a couple of times and recommend the following changes: Scale the recipe (if necessary), triple the sauce, double the garlic, add some italian seasoning, melt Mozarella on top instead of the Romano. Delicious! I look forward to making this many, many more times.
These stuffed meat shells are so good! They are very creamy and full of flavor. The only thing that I added was about 1/2 box of chopped spinach to the mixture. (My husband isn't wild about cooked spinach, but what he doesn't know, won't hurt him LOL)! I have tried other stuffed meat shell recipes, and they just didn't taste right. This one is a keeper! I will definately make this again. Thanks!
I only used 1 & 1/2 lbs of meat. I added some chopped onions (probably about 1/2 cup, maybe more) to the hamburger mixture, omitted the egg & garlic salt & increased the minced garlic. After hamburger was cooked, I deglazed the pan w/ about a 1/2 cup or so of pinot grigio (it's what I had open) & quickly reduced it down by half. This helped add flavor & moisture to the mix. I added about half a pkg. of chopped, frozen but thawed spinach, as well as some basil, oregano & parmesan cheese when I added the cream cheese ( I decreased the cheese some per other reviews) & pasta sauce. I had some mixture leftover so I stuffed some manicotti shells & froze them. I topped the shells w/ mozzarella before baking & a little romano & fresh chopped parsley after baking. These were delicious! I thought the wine added a nice dimension to the dish. I'm eager to try it w/ some italian sausage w/ the hamburger...thanks Cara!
Delicious! i used 1 lb ground turkey. the original recipe calls for 3 lbs meat, i think thats why other reviews state its too dry and i think 1 box of shells would NEVER be enough for 3 lbs of meat. i also added 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper, 1 chopped onion and about 1TBS of italian seasoning while the meat was cooking. FYI~there is no need to cook the shells before stuffing. cooked pasta is a bit hard (for me) to handle. take the cooking time for the pasta (10 mins) and add it to the baking time (45 minutes total should do it)~cover with foil the first 30 minutes and top with cheese and bake uncovered 15 more and it is just GREAT!
I just made this last night for myself and my husband, following the recipe exactly. This produces an enormous amount of food! However, the shells freeze and re-heat easily. It was definitely a hit. However, I felt like I needed more pasta sauce - maybe 2 jars instead of 1. The shells were not completely covered. This tastes delicious and was really easy to make.
I only used about 3/4 lb ground meat and about 1/2 box stove top stuffing mixed into the cooked meat mixture. That really put it over the edge and gave it great flavor! Needs more sauce too.
This is a wonderful recipe! I added a few extra spices like sweet basil, oregano and a lot more garlic. My family LOVED the finished product and has requested it again in the same weeek. The cream cheese adds a creamy texture that makes it unique to most shell recipes.
everyone just loved this recipe - also froze a batch and served 3mths - later and were still a big hit
Excellent! These shells were awesome, the cream cheese really gave them that extra little tang. The only thing I did was add a little oregano to the meat mixture. Delicious I can't wait to make these again!
This came out pretty good. Makes a lot. I split the recipe and froze half of it for later. I only used about 2 1/2 lbs of hamburger and it still made plenty. I added more garlic and fresh parsley. My husband and kids really liked it. I would use more sauce next time also and maybe used multiple cheese on top.
These were absolutely DELICIOUS! I did make a few changes, but nothing life-shattering, lol. I used 1-1/2 pounds lean ground beef that I browned with 1/2 pound italian sausage, some chopped onion, the garlic, garlic powder, parsley, salt and pepper (I did omit the oil). Once that was all cooked I drained it and allowed it to cool. Then I mixed it with the softened cream cheese (I used light), the sauce, 1 egg and some parmesan cheese. This mixture filled 32 shells for me, which was plenty (I froze some, uncooked, for other dinners). Instead of topping with the romano, I topped them with parmesan and mozzarella. I covered them and baked them @ 350 degrees for 30 minutes. I then uncovered them and baked about 15-20 minutes more...PERFECT, IMO. My family raved over these, they were SOOOOO GOOD (and easy)! I will be making these many, MANY more times! Thanks for sharing. :)
THis is SO great and easy to make ahead. I used the NEW baking cream cheese that just came out and it was fantastic. Also used a combination of sweet Italian Sausage and ground veal instead of beef. I think this would work well with ANY Ground meat. It's a great recipe....
Very unimpressive. A glorified (and much more expensive) version of Italian Style Hamburger Helper. Essentially a good meal, but be prepared to seriously tweak ingredients and amounts (specifically increase cream cheese, decrease meat and be creative with seasonings; even a novice in the kitchen would be able to come up with 25 ways to improve upon beef seasonings).
My favorite recipe I've found on this website yet! Very easy to make... I did take the advice of others and dropped the meat to 2 lbs instead of 3 lbs and I added a little more cream cheese and definitely more pasta sauce. Great tasting too:) Thanks for a great one!
These shells are a bit of work, but so worth it! They were so delicious, my mother-in-law asked me for the recipe; she is a cook and I'm just a novice in the kitchen. :) I am hungry just thinking about making them again.
So good it has become a tradition in our house served with yummy french bread!
quick, easy but needs more moisture. I added garlic, italian spices, and some parm cheese to the filling. Next time will use more (double?) the amount of sauce for the top.
I took the suggestion of others to add italian seasoning, I also put fresh basil leaves on top. I would recommend mixing ingredents together in bowl with meat before cooking.
We loved this recipe! My husband hates Italian food but he went back for second and thirds for this one. I only used a pound of ground beef and still had more than enough.
Wow! These were really great! A few minor additions - I also added healthy pinches of oregano & basil and only used 1 pound of ground beef. We truly enjoyed these~thanks for sharing the recipe!
Split decision over this - S.O. loved it, I didn't. Changed almost everything - amount of meat (too much), amount of sauce (not enough), omitted egg, increased spices, etc. Seemed like alot of work for something just OK.
Will definitely make again. I used cream cheese straight out of the fridge and combined with drained beef. Everything was creamy in just a few minutes.
Pretty good! While I don't think these are "the world's best shells," they will be a decent addition to my regular rotation nonetheless. The cream cheese adds just enough texture to make these unique. The garlic (doubling is a MUST) lends superb flavor. I bet these would freeze well, but because stuffed shells aren't my hubby's "thing" (he's out of town so at least he didn't have to "suffer" thru tonight's dinner lol!), I scaled back. Even so, I had MORE than enough to feed my parents and I. My only other changes were to use the full amount of garlic / garlic salt called for, substitute Italian blend cheese for fresh grated Romano (store was out of the latter) and use an entire 24 oz. jar of sauce - 1/4 c. mixed with my meat / cream cheese and the rest scantly spread on the bottom of my baking dish (to prevent sticking) and atop my shells. I also drained the grease from my beef BEFORE adding my cheese / sauce to it (commone sense, IMHO). To appease my dad (he's on a heart-restrictive diet), I substituted reduced-fat cream cheese, lean sirloin, Prego's heart request traditional pasta sauce, 1/2 garlic powder / 1/2 salt substitute (to make up for high-sodium garlic salt) and reduced-fat cheese. You couldn't even tell that I "lightened" this up! My only regret is using too much sauce and skipping the Romano, but that's just me. Served with garlic butter crescents, salad, homemade (low-fat) Ranch dressing and a vanilla chip dessert. Thanks for sharing, Cara! :-)
This turned out very good. Changes I made were: To the mixture: I used an entire head of garlic added some Italian seasoning added some romano cheese (before baking) increased the cream cheese by 50% I drained the beef, which isn't in the recipe. You'd be nuts not to. I think I had to bake a bit more than 15 minutes, but that's typical in my oven.
OK it's not even done cooking and I'm already giving it five stars - of course I added some things to it to make it extra yummy but this would have been good as written. I did omit the eggs because I didn't think they were needed and added a lot of extra calories. I added some hot italian sausage to ground beef to make 1.5lbs, more than enough for a 12 oz box of pasta. I also omitted the garlic salt and added a total of 5tsp garlic instead. I also added three large handfuls of baby spinach torn up into pieces a little, and about 1/4c parmesan to the mix. It was so yummy I'm lucky it made it to the shells at all! Even my 3 yr old thought it was yummy as is. I had enough for two batches so I put one in the freezer and it should be great there! Thanks for a great jumping off point - it made a special meal I am looking forward to serving to guests!!
My family really likes this dish, but with the following changes. I use 1# of ground Italian sausage instead of the burger and I drain well before mixing the ingredients. I also add 1 box of frozen spinach, with the water squeezed out well. I use 2 cloves of fresh minced garlic and 2 jars of spaghetti sauce to get enough to go in the filling and over the shells. I also add extra cheese to the top, after I put the sauce on.
Rule #1 of cooking...make sure you have everything you need for the recipe! : ) I thought I had shells but I was mistaken, so I turned this into a very tasty lasagna! Thank you for sharing! I will try to make the correct recipe next time!
I loved the end result (and so did my family). But I did make some changes-2lbs instead of 3, added more garlic to the beef, drained it of course, omitted the egg, and added more mozzarella inside and on top of the shells, and used fresh grated parm cheese on top as well. With those changes, I would give it 5 stars.
Great recipe! 30 minute prep time, and my whole family loved it...including a husband who hates cream cheese and a daughter who won't eat ground meat! I added grated parmesan cheese, oregano, & basil to the filling for a little more flavor. It is definitely a keeper.
Good stuff! Next time I will change the ground beef for italian sausage, just too see if it works. Thanks for sharing Cara...
I made this exactly as written and it turned out great. Even my very picky daughter like it.
I thought this was a good change from lasagna or spaghetti. I added spinach for extra nutrients (get 'em where you can with a toddler), cut back the cream cheese a little per other reviews, and I only used 1 lb. of ground beef and I had plenty of mix to stuff the shells with. Thanks for the recipe, we'll make it again! Danielle
These were great. I halved the recipe, but they still made a lot for just my huband and I. He couldn't get enough of them, we ate them every day for 4 days! I also made some cheese shells with a ricotta, mozarella and parmesean blend. Yum.
I have to agree with the other users... 3 lbs. of meat was too much. I cut that in half and used the same amout of the other ingredients. I also only used half a box of pasta since there was considerably less. I also followed the others and baked it with Mozarella cheese on top. My husband loved these. Will make them again!
This recipe was not hard to prepare but did dirty 3 pans and tasted like hamburger helper. I will not make this again.
I absolutely loved them! Thank you for this great recipe!
Delicious! My husband and I loved this dish. Made it exactly as the recipe said. The cream cheese was a great addition!
I made this recipe exactly as it is written and my family LOVED it! It was fast, easy and delicious! Even my husband was impressed and that is no small feat! :)
These were delicious! They were pretty easy to make with the assistance of my boyfriend. We made some changes though: added a half onion, a small zucchini chopped finely, 1lb ground beef, 1lb ground turkey, italian seasoning, no garlic salt but 4 cloves of garlic, and italian cheese blend instead of just Romano. We will have a ton of leftovers!!!! Buy of bottle of Shiraz-Cabernet for an excellent compliment to this fantastic dish!
These turned out great. I used a little extra sauce to cover the shells before baking. I made this for my boyfriend and some friends, we stuffed ourselves silly and when I took the leftovers to work they were gone in a hurry!
Once again, another hit with the family! Followed the recipe, but didn't have any Romano cheese, all I had was Monterey Jack and it did just fine!
NEW to allrecipes and I have to say this was a HIT at my house. Kids loved it, easy, quick and simple! The kids added RANCH to the top and loved it!
This was a very good recipe. Highly recommend !!
Excellent. Insanely good the next day. I also tried the suggestion about not cooking the shells, but I found them too hard when served up, although they had softened considerably when re-heated the next day. Next time, I will cook them before stuffing. I agree that there is way too much stuffing vs sauce ratio. I took the advice, used 1 lb of beef, along with 3 hot italian sausages, and still had plenty left over after stuffing the shells. Added the left over stuffing in with 4 cups of the sauce to cover the shells. Sprinkled mozza on top and baked. This will become a family favourite.
A new favorite! Easy to make and everybody loves this dish!
This recipe is really easy to make!! BUT... it looks very fancy once served. I am not a very experienced cook and I got the oohs and ahhs when I made this for a dinner party!!! Excellent and easy!
These were good, but not "to die for". I probably won't make them again, mainly because my kids weren't all that impressed. Like most of the others, I cut back on the beef (2# instead of 3) and browned and drained it before adding the other ingredients. I also added more garlic and some oregano and basil. I used a 25 oz. jar of sauce instead of the recommended 14 oz., and it still could have used more sauce to cover.
I've never attempted stuffed shells (mainly because I don't like ricotta cheese--so this was a good fit for me since it has cream cheese instead!). This was absolutely delicious!!! I did add some Italian seasoning to the mix as well as some shredded Italian cheese blend before stuffing the shells. It was so good that I couldn't help but eat some of the filling before I even got all of the shells stuffed! (The stuffing part was a little messy, but well worth it!) My mouth was watering by the time these babies come out of the oven. Will definitely make again!
Awesome dish! I used half hamburger meat and half Italian sausage. I also mixed in mozzarella with the meat...Very good and easy.. I topped with about 2 cups of mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Very good..I had to stuff the shells by hand. Oh yeah, do not cook your shells to much they will be to flimsy to stuff.. I did mine just undercooked and they finished cooking in the oven...
Yum!! I accidentally added too much sauce, but still came out wonderful. Next time, I might try and add some cottage cheese in and halve the cream cheese.
My family loved this recipe. We halved it and still had leftovers (and they are still just as good the next day!). The cream cheese made this very rich but gave them a different taste that we loved.
I made this for a dinner party and took some advice from the other reviewers. I used manicotti instead of shells. I browned 1 lb lean ground turkey and 1 package sweet italian sausage with onion, garlic and italian seasoning since I had no fresh herbs. I also used only 1 egg and did 1/2 cream cheese and 1/2 ricotta. I also used 2 1/2 jars of sauce. I made it in advance and set in refrigerator for about 2 hours then cooked at 400 for 30 minutes covered, 15 minutes uncovered with last 5 on broil for the cheese.
I'm new to cooking and this was my first trial meal for the summer. The family LOVED it. We like cream cheese with just about everything. My mom can't wait till I make it again. It took a lot of running around the kitchen to make, but the effort was definitely worth it.
I just made this for dinner, and I love it! I cut recipe in 1/2 and used 1 lb of ground beef. I found myself eating the meat mixture straight out of the bowl while I was stuffing the shells. The more meat the better. Great recipe!!
What a great,simple recipe!! My whole family loved it, even my picky 4 yr old. I split the recipe and made half with Boca crumbles and my meat loving husband still thought the vegetarian half was good! Thanks for sharing
This is a very good recipe, but I made some changes. I can't imagine not browning the meat first and draining all the fat before adding the other ingredients to it...and I didn't add the egg until the end when all items are mixed together. Also added basil and oregano to the mixture.
This was really good, I doubled the sauce (I used Newmans Own Sauce, and it is wonderful), I added chopped spinach, extra garlic, and used Parm, and Mozz Cheese. Turned out wonderful! I love this recipe, it's a keeper.
We did not like this recipe at all. It was all meat and pasta, no real flavor. I would have to put much more cream cheese in to really taste it with all that meat. It made sooo much, I had several pans of it, which I tried to doctor up at future meals with mozarella, parmesan, extra sauce, ricotta - but it still wasn't very good. Sorry.
Yum! These were so creamy!! I added a bit more garlic of course and more sauce!!
This is the best stuffed shells ever. I kept the recipe as is and just froze the left overs.
I made this recipe basically the same way except i halved the recipe. I used 1 lb hamburger, 1 jar pasta sauce and about half a box of shells. I also added a chopped onion to the hamburger meat, italian seasoning, and i omitted the eggs. I topped it with italian cheese and cooked for 20 minutes.
This was absolutely delicious. Used 1b of ground chicken instead of beef. I toke other reviewer suggestions added sauteed onions to meat Omitted the eggs as this wasnt needed. I also added spinach to cream cheese/meat mixture. added additional spices, Oregano, basil, ground peper when cooking ground chicken and also extra sauce on the top and mozzarella cheese. Last 3mins put under the broiler
Very good! I cut the recipe in half and followed the directions exactly and they turned out great! This dish would be great for a big family meal.
I used 1.5lbs instead of 3 and had PLENTY of meat in each shell. I omitted the eggs since they really are only used as a binding ingredient and unneccesary if you are using cream cheese versus ricotta. I also added a pkg of chopped spinach, drained. I think I could have gotten away with half a pkg of cream cheese as well. Overall, very tastey.
This is delicious!! I only used 1.5 lbs of ground beef and doubled the garlic and spices. I used both romano and mozzarella cheese. YUMMMMM!!!!
My husband loved these. He said the meat filling tasted similar to beef stroganof. Definitely will make again.
These were delicious! A nice twist on my mom's recipe that I've loved since childhood. I made a few changes though...I used about 1 pound of meat, I used 1/2 the cream cheese and added some ricotta cheese, I used mozz cheese instead of romano. They were fantastic the next day, too!
This was wonderful. Even my picky husband and daughter loved it. I made a couple changes: only used 2 lbs ground beef which was just enough for a 12 oz pk of shells and used 2 jars of sauce. Turned out great. Thanks for the recipe!
Just too creamy for us.
Delicious recipe; very filling. Modified the recipe with more garlic, spicy Italian seasoning, and diced scallions. Added more sauce on top (1 cup more). Next tine I will add romano cheese to the filling as well as topping after baking. Cooked an additional 8 minutes. 3 out of 3 smiling and content faces at the end of the meal. We would gladly prepare this for friends.
Hello, My hubby & sons liked this recipe more than us girls did. Since i am rating it i will go with what I thought. 3lbs is to much meat i only used 1.5 lbs total. I used bulk & link sausage chopped in small pieces too. There also needed to be some cheese like ricotta, or shredded in with the meat to hold it together. I put foil over the 9X13 pan and baked in a 375 degree oven for 40 minutes, then removed the foil and heated 15 more minutes. I do want to try and make this again with more cheeses mixed into the meats. Have a great day!
This was delicious. My husband loved it and brought it to share at work the next day, everyone raved. I did add another 14oz can of sauce and some italian seasonings. I would omit the egg next time...don't see the necessity unless it was added raw to bind the meat but that isn't what the recipe calls for and the cream cheese binds just fine. That cream cheese is really what makes the flavor exceptional. I will definitely make it again, probably but not for quite a while as I was able to freeze plenty. Think I'll add a little spinach and some italian sausage next time
An extremely delicious recipe. I took advice from other reviewers and left out the egg, also adding chopped baby spinach on top of dish with a bit of grated cheese. Extra yummy!! Even great the next day. Everyone loves this one.
We loved this recipe. I used half Italian sausage and half hamburger I also added about 1/4 of the Ramono cheese to the filling. I also used extra sauce as other's recommended. We live in a rural area, and the grocery store ususally doesn't have "speciality" pasta so I used Manicotti instead.
I really liked this recipe. Will make it again. It's good leftover too.
I didn't think they turned out that great. I'm really sorry.
We loved this dish. I did only use 1 pound of ground beef and before baking sprinkled shredded mozzarella cheese on top. Thank you for sharing!!
Very good and easy to make. My husband and I like this for a weeknight meal!
Acceptable, but the recipe lends to saltiness, nice idea the cream cheese, but didn't work for me...ok, but not gourmet
I did not like this recipe at all. I spent over $15 on the lean ground beef alone. I did add mozzarella cheese, but I love mozzarella and it works with almost all tomato pasta recipes. I think the cream cheese is what ruined it, it tasted very weird. It was an easy recipe, but was not worth the amount of cleaning required afterwards. Maybe it would be good if prepaired without the cream cheese. Anyway, I will not make this again.
This is my go to stuffed shell recipe. I've made it countless times over the past few years, and every time I make it, it's a huge hit. Whoever I make it for always asks for the recipe. I do scale the recipe down to 1 pound of ground beef, 1 egg, and 1 jar of pasta sauce. I also use whatever cheese I have on hand.
Really very good! I used half ground beef and have italian sausage. Not sure what the eggs add but i did use them. I also added onions, dried oregano and basil to the meet mixture. And i melted a mozzarella/parmasean mix on the top under the broiler...very delicious!
Thank you cara for posting this deeelicious recipe! My family loved it!
This was pretty good, when my (Italian)Hubby found out I was putting cream cheese instead of Ricotta cheese in the shells he was a bit skeptical, I did add the spinach to the mix, my kids loved it. My hubby said it was 4 stars so I will make it again, It does make a lot for left overs. Thanks
My picky family absolutely LOVED these and my friends too. I made Texas garlic toast as a side item for it. The nice thing is if you half the recipe but use the same 12 oz amount of shells you have more than enough filling for the shells. I recommend buying a second jar of Spaghetti sauce though if your family likes things a little more saucy. Other than that KUDO's to the creator.
This is the first time I have tried meat instead of cheese filled. very good and easy to make on a weekday!!
These are so amazing and my small children gobbled them up! One of the best recipes I have tried in awhile. I had to switch to Mozzarella instead of Romano because I was out out but it was still delicious and is going in my keeper box! Eta - we had to switch to dairy and egg free and I've made this so many times, I've adjusted to suit us. I like it creamier so I use one lb ground beef with 8 oz vegan cream cheese, no egg. Increase the pasta sauce about 1 1/2- 2 cups (I dump and taste). No garlic salt but double garlic. Vegan almond cheese on top and a great meal! I have been asked for the recipe multiple times! You will use about 80% of the shells and more than enough for 6 servings!
easy and delicious. i could only find manacotti pasta, so half the stuffing filled one box of pasta. i saved the rest for another day. it will definitely be added to the rotation.
My family gave this a 4. The filling was yummy and pretty easy to make. Like some of the others I put off making this because I thought it would be difficult to stuff the shells but it was surprisingly easy and quick. I also took the advise of several others and left out the egg and increased the sauce and garlic. I used a full 26 oz can of sauce - half in the filling and half on top and it turned out quite nice. I also used mozzarella cheese because I didn't have any romano on hand. I would probably make this again because it was easy to make and has simple ingredients, most of which I usually have on hand.
OMG deliciouse even my 3y old couldn't get enough of this one.Great recipe wouldn't add or take anything away from this one ...thanks for the recipe
Very impressive! I reduced the portions and substituted seasoned salt for the garlic salt. I also added some spinach and oregano. Came out excellent and I still had enough to freeze for another meal!
Excellent!! I used Paul Newman's Sockarooni sauce. Quick & Easy Recipie!! 5-stars!!!
I made this the other night. I also made a few alterations based on some of the other reviews. But basically the same. My family loved it! My 10 year old son suggested putting the meat and cream cheese mixture over nachos. We may try that soon!
This recipe was wonderful. I scaled down the recipe for 4 people and it was a perfect amount for 2 people with a little left over. Will make again!!
My fiancee was sooo impressed with this recipe as was I! AMAZING!The only thing I did different was made my own sauce! This will definitely be in my weekly rotation! Thanks so much!
These were tasty! I cooked the shells for 5 minutes, not 10, which made them easy to stuff. I covered with a jar and a half of sauce, and baked covered for 45 min. I also used less ground beef- about a pound, pound and a half. Wondering why to cook the egs with the beef tho....may mix them into the mixture after with the cream cheese.
The pasta was delicious! I used an entire box of shells and one whole block of cream cheese. The recipe made 1 1/2 dishes so I shared with a homebound friend. Her family enjoyed it as well. I will be adding this recipe to my repetoire.
This was SOOOO delicious! I used all of the cream cheese, and 1 lb of gr beef, and instead of parsley, I used Italian seasoning. I had plenty of filling, so I made extra shells and we have plenty of leftovers. Will definitely add this to my rotation of meals!!