Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

by Heidi @ Food Doodles on January 31, 2013

 

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

Please tell me you’ve had spanakopita before!  Ricotta cheese, feta cheese and spinach, usually all wrapped up in phyllo pastry.  How can you go wrong?

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

Apparently that was how I thought as a kid because that was all I ordered every time we went out for Greek food when I was a kid.  How boring was I as a kid?  Wait, who am I kidding, I’m still pretty boring Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

I did score some not-boring points when I served this for dinner last night though.  The hubby even took the leftovers for lunch today.  Is it weird that that is how I determine if a dish is successful or not?  Then again, that’s only one way to judge a meals successfulness and certainly not my only way, but in this case I’ll take it.

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

If you’ve noticed, I’ve started putting nutrition info on the recipes I’ve posted recently.  I hope you’ll forgive me for not adding any nutrition info to this one.  I’m pretty sure I don’t want to know :)  Although with low fat cheeses I’m sure it wouldn’t be too bad… But I’ll leave it up to you if you want to figure it out.

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

Speaking of nutrition, I was frustrated that I couldn’t find whole grain shells at our local grocery store.  Do you have them where you live?  We do live in a small town, so I don’t really know if they just aren’t common, or if they just aren’t here.  I’ll have to look when I go shopping elsewhere, but for now, these were a delicious once-in-a-while meal.

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

I ended up using the very last of my homemade marinara sauce from last summer on this.  I cooked down 30 pounds of tomatoes into (I think) 5 quarts of thick, amazing tomatoey sauce that I added the remnants of my herb garden into as well.  Have I mentioned that I cannot wait for summer?  I used up my last of that amazing sauce!  Summer can’t come fast enough.

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

Oh, and now I remember where I was going with that tangent… If you’re whipping up your own sauce to go on top you could give it a bit of a Greek flare with some Greek seasoning or just plenty of oregano.  I think that would be awesome Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Entree
Yield: 6
Ingredients
  • 2 250g or 8.9oz package jumbo shells(whole grain if you can find them), cooked according to package directions
  • 1 454g container ricotta cheese(approx. 2 C)
  • ½ of a 400g container of feta cheese, crumbled(approx. ¾ C)
  • 1 tbsp butter or oil
  • 155g or 5.5oz fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • A generous pinch of ground nutmeg
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 C marinara sauce(or one large jar)
Instructions
  1. Cook the pasta shells according to the directions found on the package and then drain, run under cold water, and drain again.
  2. While the shells are cooking, stir together the ricotta cheese and feta. In a skillet, heat the butter or oil and very lightly saute the spinach just until it wilts, 1-2 minutes over medium heat. Stir the spinach into the cheese. Add the eggs and stir well. Add the nutmeg, and season with salt and pepper and stir well.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 9x13 pan by spreading just enough tomato sauce to cover the bottom of the pan.
  4. Begin stuffing the shells by holding them open in one hand and adding a spoonful of filling. Place shells close together in the prepared pan, repeating with the rest until all the shells are stuffed. Pour the remaining marinara sauce over top.
  5. Place the stuffed shells in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes until the sauce is bubbly. Remove from the oven and serve immediately with Parmesan cheese for topping.

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

Spanakopita Stuffed Shells

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Ari @ Ari's Menu January 31, 2013 at 8:37 pm

I’ve never had spanakopita before, but now I feel like I need to. And also these shells–they look soooo cheesy and delicious! I’ve never found whole wheat shells, which is probably why I’ve never made stuffed shells. Maybe amazon?
Ari @ Ari’s Menu recently posted..Drink & Dish: Buffalo Chicken Dip {with video!}

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2 Kathryn February 1, 2013 at 7:06 am

This sounds really lovely, such great flavours!
Kathryn recently posted..potatoes boulangere

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3 Holiday Baker Man February 1, 2013 at 8:26 am

Great recipe!
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4 Erin @ Texanerin Baking February 1, 2013 at 10:16 am

These aren’t boring at all! They look amazing. And spanakopita is new to me. Sounds good… if you can’t taste the spinach. ;)

And whole wheat shells? Ha. Don’t think those exist anywhere. But oh well. We all deserve some stuffed shells now and then, don’t we?
Erin @ Texanerin Baking recently posted..Whole Wheat Stuffed Cheese Buns

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5 Megan @ Megan's Miles February 1, 2013 at 11:13 am

I am currently obsessed with cheese, so these sound extra delicious! Definitely making these next week — thanks for the recipe!
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6 Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies February 1, 2013 at 12:10 pm

I was just thinking yesterday that I should work on a stuffed shells recipe! Using spanakopita filling in them is such a fun idea. :) And yes, I can never find big whole wheat shells either! The little ones, yes, but not the big ones. Someone needs to start making them!
Kiersten @ Oh My Veggies recently posted..What I Ate This Week | Maple Miso Tofu (because baked tofu is the best tofu!)

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7 Holiday Baker Man February 4, 2013 at 11:52 am

Oh Yum!
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8 heather February 6, 2013 at 6:50 am

I can’t wait for summer either – I still have 5 quarts of sauce left from the Summer, canning is a lot of work but so worth it! I love your version of shells, what a great idea!
heather recently posted..bok choi & king oyster mushroom quinoa

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9 Becca @ Amuse Your Bouche March 25, 2013 at 11:06 am

Oh yuuuum! I love spanakopita, I love pasta – what could possibly be bad about this :D

(I’m really boring at Greek restaurants too, I allllways order veggie moussaka – it’s TOO good. Though spanakopita does always really tempt me!)
Becca @ Amuse Your Bouche recently posted..Quick tabbouleh salad with grilled halloumi

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10 David Crichton April 1, 2013 at 2:53 pm

I keep meaning to make a spanakopita, just keep forgetting. My favourite pasta dishes are those made with the giant shells, so guess my spanakopita is going to happen after all.

Great dish.

Dave.
David Crichton recently posted..Slow Roast Sirloin.

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11 Susan August 31, 2013 at 2:16 pm

This recipe sounds nice. I love the idea of the spanakopita in pasta shells. Not sure, though, about the marinara and parmesan.

I think I’ve seen small shells in whole wheat in our local grocery, but not the big ones. It’s not just a problem of living in a small town. Our big town (675,000 people) doesn’t have that kind of thing either. I’d probably have to travel several hundred miles to find a store that carries those – although, now that I think about it, Walmart might have them, and we do have multiple Walmarts. Walmart tends to be more cosmopolitan in some ways than Albertsons (never thought I’d hear myself saying that!).

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