My twin sister Susan and I are Italian, and used to watch our grandmother make homemade ravioli, one of our favorite childhood dishes. Grandma used two secret ingredients that gave the dish a distinctive taste - clove and cinnamon. When I became vegan I thought I'd have to say goodbye to this wonderful comfort food, but Susan encouraged me to make a vegan version and these turned out to be fabulous. To make it easy, we replaced the homemade ravioli dough with pasta shells, and stuffed them with the magical filling. The results are amazing! No one can believe they're vegan. I served these to a group of 80 people and they devoured them!
Stuffed Pasta Shells (Vegan)
- Servings: 3 shells
- Yield: 7
- Prep Time: 30 min
- Cooking Time: 30 min
- 2 c. Beyond Meat® Beefy Crumbles (you can find them in the freezer section at Target)
- 10 oz. package frozen spinach
- ¾ c. onion finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 T. extra virgin olive oil
- ⅛ t. ground cinnamon
- ⅛ t. ground cloves
- ¾ t. salt
- 5-6 grinds fresh black peppercorns
- 1 (12 oz.) box jumbo pasta shells
- 1 (22 oz). jar quality marinara sauce (recommended brand Classico Tomato & Basil)
- Go Veggie! Brand Vegan Parmesan cheese
- Fresh basil leaves, cut into ribbons
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bring a large pot of water to boil.
- Boil 26 of the pasta shells – there will be some left over. You will only end up filling about 22 but some will break in the process of cooking. Cook according to package directions – do not overcook – it’s better to have them a little “al dente” (firm to the bite) because you will be baking them in the oven later.
- Run water over the spinach to thaw and squeeze out excess water with hands. Measure one cup of spinach. Use the remainder in another recipe such as soup.
- Heat olive oil in skillet on medium-low heat. Add onion and sauté, stirring constantly until onion is translucent, about four minutes. Add minced garlic and continue to stir just until garlic is heated through – do not burn garlic or it will taste bitter.
- Add beefy crumbles and spinach and continue to sauté until entire mixture is heated throughout. Add spices and mix until fully incorporated.
- When shells are done cooking, carefully drain them by pouring into a colander or removing them with a slotted spoon. Place them individually on a plate, to ensure they do not stick together.
- Let the shells cool enough for you to handle them. Fill each shell with beefy mixture. The easiest way to do this is to scoop the mixture with an ice cream scoop. I stuff the shell with about ¼ cup of the mixture so it’s nice and plump. This will make approximately 22 stuffed shells.
- Pour half the sauce into a baking pan until the bottom is covered. Place stuffed shells in the pan side by side, until all shells are in the pan. Pour the remainder of the sauce over the shells.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
- Serve immediately. Top with fresh basil and vegan parmesan, then devour.