I love this crockpot stuffed shells recipe because there’s no need to boil the pasta first, just stuff the shells and cook them in your crockpot!
Why use a crockpot to make stuffed shells?
I like to throw this in the crockpot before church so we have something for lunch when we get home on Sundays. It’s also nice to be able to make something hearty during the hot summer months without heating up my oven.
I also like to make these during the week during lunch time to have an easy dinner ready. When both of my children were small babies, the crockpot was the only way I got anything cooked. I could wear my children and still add things to the crockpot without even turning it on since it would be a huge safety no-no to wear your children while cooking over a hot stove.
What goes well with these stuffed shells?
I love to serve this with a loaf of Italian country bread with olive oil dipping sauce. They also go well with a nice green salad.
How long should I cook the stuffed shells?
This is a “fast” crockpot recipe. I think this crockpot recipe works better if you cook it on low for about four hours because it does tend to get a little soupy (it’s still good, but more like lasagna soup) if you cook it for longer than four hours.
Since cooking times can very from slow cooker to slow cooker be sure to keep an eye on the recipe to make sure the pasta doesn’t become overcooked. If you do accidentally overcook it, the recipe is still good in my opinion, it’s just more like lasagna soup than stuffed shells
Crockpot stuffed shells
- Crockpot (slow cooker)
- 6 ounces jumbo pasta shells (I used approximately half a box of jumbo pasta shells)
- 1/2 lb ground Italian sausage
- 2 cups shredded Italian cheese blend
- 1 jar tomato sauce
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup water
- There's no need to cook the shells first which makes things a lot easier.
- Begin by browning the Italian sausage in a skillet until it is thoroughly cooked. Drain any excess fat and set it aside to cool.
- Add about a tablespoon of meat to each shell and then fill each one with as much cheese as you can. The jumbo shells should be large enough for you to easily stuff them even if they're uncooked.
- Once the shells are stuffed, add them to the crockpot and then add the pasta sauce on top.
- Next, add the dried basil and Italian seasoning along with enough water to the pasta sauce to completely cover the pasta and almost fill your crockpot to the top if you're using a 3 quart crockpot. The shells will absorb a lot of the sauce so make sure you add enough water.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
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