Caprese Stuffed Shells: A Delicious Twist on a Classic Dish

These Caprese Stuffed Shells are a delightful fusion of classic Italian flavors, featuring jumbo pasta shells filled with a creamy ricotta and mozzarella mixture, fresh cherry tomatoes, and aromatic basil, all topped with a tangy balsamic glaze. Elegant yet easy to make, this dish is perfect for impressing guests or enjoying as a cozy family meal.

Preparation Time:

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes


  • 20 jumbo pasta shells
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped, plus extra for garnish
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Balsamic glaze for drizzling


  1. Cook Pasta Shells:
    • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
    • Cook the jumbo pasta shells according to the package instructions until al dente.
    • Drain and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process. Set aside.
  2. Prepare Filling:
    • In a mixing bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, half of the shredded mozzarella cheese, grated Parmesan cheese, chopped basil leaves, quartered cherry tomatoes, salt, and pepper. Mix until well combined.
  3. Stuff Pasta Shells:
    • Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
    • Spread a thin layer of marinara sauce on the bottom of a baking dish.
    • Take each cooked pasta shell and fill it with a generous spoonful of the ricotta mixture, then place it in the baking dish.
    • Repeat until all the shells are filled and arranged in the baking dish.
  4. Bake:
    • Sprinkle the remaining shredded mozzarella cheese over the stuffed shells.
    • Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  5. Serve:
    • Remove the foil from the baking dish and drizzle the Caprese Stuffed Shells with balsamic glaze.
    • Garnish with additional fresh basil leaves.
    • Serve hot and enjoy!

Serving Suggestions:

  • Main Course: Serve as a delicious main course with a side salad or garlic bread.
  • Side Dish: Pair with grilled chicken or shrimp for a complete meal.
  • Party Appetizer: Cut the stuffed shells in half and serve as elegant appetizers at parties or gatherings.

Cooking Tips:

  • Ricotta Mixture: For extra creaminess, mix in an egg with the ricotta cheese mixture before filling the shells.
  • Fresh Ingredients: Use ripe cherry tomatoes and fragrant basil leaves for the best flavor.
  • Make-Ahead: Prepare the stuffed shells in advance and refrigerate until ready to bake.

Nutritional Benefits:

  • Ricotta Cheese: Rich in protein and calcium, essential for bone health.
  • Mozzarella Cheese: Provides protein and calcium, plus adds creaminess to the filling.
  • Tomatoes and Basil: High in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Dietary Information:

  • Vegetarian: This recipe is suitable for vegetarians.
  • Kid-Friendly: Kids will love the cheesy filling and fun shell shapes.
  • Gluten-Free Option: Use gluten-free pasta shells to make the dish gluten-free.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe:

  • Flavorful: The combination of creamy cheese, juicy tomatoes, and aromatic basil creates a burst of flavor in every bite.
  • Impressive Presentation: These stuffed shells look elegant and sophisticated, making them perfect for special occasions.
  • Easy to Make: Despite its gourmet appearance, this dish is simple to prepare and requires minimal ingredients.


These Caprese Stuffed Shells are a delightful twist on the classic Italian dish, combining the flavors of a traditional Caprese salad with the comfort of stuffed pasta shells. Whether served as a main course, side dish, or appetizer, this recipe is sure to impress with its delicious taste and elegant presentation. Enjoy the creamy ricotta filling, juicy cherry tomatoes, and aromatic basil, all topped with a drizzle of tangy balsamic glaze.

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