Hot Eats and Cool Reads: Ground Beef and Mozzarella Cheese Stuffed Jumbo Shells Smothered in a Simple Tomato Sauce Recipe

Sep 3, 2012

Ground Beef and Mozzarella Cheese Stuffed Jumbo Shells Smothered in a Simple Tomato Sauce Recipe

A tried and true family favorite for decades! These ground beef and cheese stuffed shells are completely homemade, yet simple and SO delicious and addicting! Based off Mom's recipe and perfected over the years into this amazing comfort food dinner.


shells on a plate with one cut open.


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baked stuffed shells in a casserole dish.


This post was revised, photographed and updated 10/2021.


My Step-Mom and Dad had a couple exchange students from Korea staying with them for a week and I was super excited to have them over for dinner!

We ate salad and Mini Garlic Monkey Bread for the sides. It was a perfect meal and it was so nice to hang out with Nary and Jay, the exchange students, and of course my family!

I decided to make this recipe because the flavor is amazing and it serves quite a few people! Everyone loved them and we even had leftovers.

This recipe has evolved from my Mom's stuffed shells recipe, which we grew up with and loved! My Mom always used homemade tomato juice and I decided to add diced tomatoes. Still very similar to hers and always a favorite!

It takes some time to prep, cook, put the shells together and bake, but the end result is so worth it.


Keep scrolling for tips, additional stuffed shells recipes and more! 


Thanks so much for supporting a small business and visiting our family owned blog 💕


stuffed shells on a plate with linen in the background.


What are the ingredients in this recipe?


  • onion
  • garlic
  • ground beef
  • Italian seasoning
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • mozzarella cheese
  • olive oil
  • tomato sauce
  • petite diced tomatoes
  • tomato juice
  • sugar


Scroll down to the printable recipe card for measurements and instructions!


Recipe tips:


  • This recipe is freezer friendly. Prepare shells as directed, but place into an aluminum pan. Seal and freeze before baking. You can bake from frozen, but will need to increase the baking time or thaw in the refrigerator and bake as directed. Freeze for up to 3 months. 
  • Do not overcook the shells prior to baking to prevent pasta from being mushy.
  • Transfer any leftovers into an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to three days. Reheat in the oven or in the microwave.

a fork cutting into the stuffed shell.


More stuffed shells recipes you might like:



You can add or substitute with these ingredients:


  • Ground Italian Sausage or a mixture of ground beef and Italian sausage
  • V8 or Spicy V8 instead of tomato juice
  • add crushed red pepper to the ground beef for a kick
  • use garlic and onion powder instead of fresh
  • provolone cheese instead of mozzarella
  • add ricotta cheese
  • use ground turkey or ground chicken instead of beef
  • Add sliced fresh mushrooms when the ground beef is almost cooked through
  • garlic olive oil instead of regular


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stuffed shell on a fork.


More comfort food dinner recipes you may love:



I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did!


CLICK TO PIN THIS RECIPE FOR LATER


Ground Beef and Mozzarella Cheese Stuffed Jumbo Shells

Ground Beef and Mozzarella Cheese Stuffed Jumbo Shells

Yield: 8 servings
Author: Hot Eats and Cool Reads
Prep time: 10 MinCook time: 1 H & 10 MTotal time: 1 H & 20 M

Ingredients

  • 12 ounce package jumbo shells pasta, cooked al dente according to package directions
  • Filling:
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • Sauce:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2- 15 ounce cans tomato sauce
  • 14.5 ounce can petite diced tomatoes
  • 4 cups tomato juice
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • Topping:
  • 1 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, optional

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large skillet, add the onions, garlic, ground beef, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Cook until beef is browned and onions are tender. Drain fat if needed. Add 2 cups mozzarella, stir until cheese is melted and remove from heat.
  3. Meanwhile heat a large saucepan over medium heat and add olive oil. Saute onions and garlic for about 10 minutes over until onions are tender. Add the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, tomato juice, sugar, salt and pepper. Simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. Add one cup of sauce to the ground beef mixture and stir. 
  5. Spread some sauce in the bottoms of a 9x13 and 8x8 glass baking dish.
  6. Stuff each shell by scooping meat and cheese mixture until full. 
  7. Set in baking dish and repeat until meat mixture is gone.
  8. Pour remaining sauce over shells and top each baking dish with shredded Mozzarella.
  9. Bake for 40 minutes or until sauce is bubbling and cheese is melted.

Notes:

You may have a few shells remaining. You can save for another meal, or roll and stuff between the shells in the pan.


While cooking the pasta, stir often to prevent them from sticking together.


This is freezer friendly. Prepare shells as directed, but place into an aluminum pan. Seal and freeze before baking. You can bake from frozen, but will need to increase the baking time or thaw in the refrigerator and bake as directed. Freeze for up to 3 months.


Transfer any leftovers into an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to three days. Reheat in the oven or in the microwave.

Nutrition Facts

Calories

546.13

Fat (grams)

19.63

Sat. Fat (grams)

8.00

Carbs (grams)

52.02

Fiber (grams)

7.13

Net carbs

49.38

Sugar (grams)

11.61

Protein (grams)

40.86

Sodium (milligrams)

1525.45

Cholesterol (grams)

96.66

Hot Eats and Cool Reads is not responsible for the outcome of any recipe you try from this blog/website. You may not always have the same results I do due to variations in ingredients, humidity, altitude, cooking temperatures, typos, errors, omissions, or individual cooking abilities. 


You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information provided is accurate, complete, and useful. I am not a certified nutritionist and make no claims to the contrary. Each individual's dietary needs and restrictions are unique to the individual.




stuffed shells with text for pinterest.


Thanks so much for stopping by!


three stuffed shells on a plate.



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17 comments:

  1. This looks like a wonderful meal for company! My husband really like Italian food, so this would definitely be a hit at our house :) Pinning it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for pinning Jamie! This is at the top of my list of favorites!

      Delete
    2. I know it would be a hit with my family! Thank you for sharing at All my Bloggy Friends!

      Delete
  2. I love stuffed shells and this looks like a great recipe that I will be trying soon. Thanks for sharing on Foodie Friends Friday and remember to come back and vote on Sunday.
    http://marlys-thisandthat.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Sheena,
    This looks like a great dish to carry us into fall. Your recipe is awesome! Hope you have a great weekend and thanks for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

    ReplyDelete
  4. This looks like a good recipe. Thanks for sharing. I'm going to have to try this.
    Patricia

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hope you like it Patricia! It's so good! Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete
  5. Sheena,
    Yum! This looks amazing. I haven't made stuffed shells in forever. I think I might try these tonight. Thanks for sharing the recipe at Creative Thursday :)
    Michelle

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Michelle! This is my all time favorite meal! Thanks for hosting!

      Delete
  6. These look like a great dinner choice!! Thanks so much for linking up to Tasty Thursdays on The Mandatory Mooch!! I hope you will link up again. The party will be live tonight. http://www.mandatorymooch.blogspot.com

    Thanks, Nichi

    ReplyDelete

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