These supreme pizza stuffed shells are even better than the original! Pasta oozing with cheese and packed with all your favorite pizza ingredients.
So let's just get this out of the way up front, I could probably eat pizza every single day and be totally ok with that. However, in my never ending pursuit to be a well rounded “adult”, I should probably diversify the menu a little. Let me introduce you to the supreme pizza stuffed shells.
I spend a lot of time thinking about pasta. Probably more than the average person. The endless combinations of pasta shapes with sauces and other ingredients is exciting to me. As I sit here typing I’m daydreaming about a seafood tagliatelle with a creamy vodka sauce and big chunks of lobster I had a few months ago . . . but let’s save that for another post.
One day Mike and I were talking about pasta, and yes 99% of our conversations revolve around food. I asked “what else can I stuff pasta shells with?” and he said “what about pizza?” and BOOM. Your new favorite dish was born.
I took all the ingredients I love on a supreme pizza and stuffed them into jumbo pasta shells. This recipe is deliciously balanced. It’s creamy and cheesy without being overly cheesy (HA! As if there is even such a thing). I love the combination of both pepperoni and sausage, although you can omit those if you want to make a vegetarian version! We highly recommend using a quality jarred sauce for this recipe. I love making my own marinara sauce but since this recipe has a little extra prep involved with stuffing the shells, using a jarred sauce saves some time. We like to use Rao’s Homemade jarred sauce. It is the best!
Don’t be afraid to get creative with your pizza ingredients! Not a fan of olives? You don’t have to use them! Would you rather a meat-lover’s version? Add in some cooked bacon and chopped ham! Next time I make this I want to add in mushrooms as well. YOLO.
How to make this recipe
First, I boil a pot of water for the shells. Don’t forget to always add in salt and olive oil into your pasta water! Boil the pasta to al dente, or just under. The pasta will have a chance to cook a little longer while in the oven. While the water is heating up, brown the sausage, then saute the veggies. You don’t have to cook the vegetables to completely soft. It is better if they still have a little texture when you bite into them. When the pasta is done, drain and set them aside. Don’t leave them for too long though, or they will start to dry out and be harder to open and stuff.
After the sausage, onions, peppers, and garlic are cooked, mix them all together with the cheese, pepperoni, and seasonings. Gently fold in the black olives at the end so they don't break apart too much. Pour the jar of sauce in the bottom of a baking dish. I use two jars, because I like my pasta extra saucy.
To stuff the shells, I gently squeezed the ends together to unfurl the curled edges with one hand. Don’t worry, some of them WILL break but that’s ok. There should be more than enough in the box. With a large spoon I stuffed the shells with about 2 tablespoons of stuffing, then nestle them in rows into the marinara sauce. You can lay out the shells first and then dump the sauce over after, but it makes for a prettier presentation pouring the sauce first. Sprinkle with the rest of the cheese and bake those babies until they are melty and bubbly. Top with some fresh basil and you have yourself a dinner that is the best of both worlds, pasta and pizza. That’s a world I want to live in.
How to make this recipe vegetarian
If you want to make this recipe vegetarian, omit the Italian sausage and pepperoni. You could also saute a pint of button mushrooms and add them into the shell filling as well to beef up the recipe without beef.
Are you going to try out this recipe? What other delicious goodies do you like to stuff your shells with? Let me know in the comments! And don’t forget to take a picture and tag @feedingourfaces!
Supreme Pizza Stuffed Shells
- 12 oz jumbo shells
- 1 pound Italian sausage
- 1 cup onion chopped
- 1 cup bell pepper chopped
- 1 cup red pepper chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 8 oz pepperoni chopped
- 1 egg lightly beaten
- 16 oz ricotta
- 8 oz low moisture mozzarella shredded
- 8 oz parmesan cheese finely shredded
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 2.25 oz can of sliced black olives
- 24 oz jar of marinara sauce plus more if you like it saucy
- Basil for topping
- Boil pasta shells al dente.
- Cook sausage on medium-high until browned, about 10 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside in a mixing bowl.
- In the same pan with oil from sausage, saute onions, red pepper, and bell pepper on medium-low for about 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and saute for 2-3 more minutes, stirring as you cook.
- Add the vegetables to mixing bowl with sausage. Add in pepperoni, egg, ricotta, ¾ of the mozzarella, ¾ of the parmesan, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well.
- Gently fold in the black olives.
- Add the whole jar of sauce to the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Stuff shells with about 2 tablespoons of stuffing each and align in the sauce. Top with remaining mozzarella and parmesan.
- Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbling.
- Sprinkle with basil, and serve.