Squash stuffed Shells



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These Squash Stuffed Shells are filled with delicious delicata squash, ricotta and spices. It’s the perfect weekend meal that everyone will love. Serve it with a Crunchy Brussels Sprouts Salad and Easy Apple Cobbler for an ideal seasonal meal.

Welcome to a seasonal, autumn favorite of mine. The assembly requires a bit of work but it is absolutely worth it. I love stuffed shells and this recipe is an autumn take on this dish.

Ingredients for Squash Stuffed Shells

Filling ingredients in a bowl.
  1. Ricotta – There is a reason it’s a favorite for stuffing the shells. It’s rich and flavorful.
  2. Parmesan – Shredded parmesan adds the perfect amount of saltiness and umami flavor to the filling.
  3. Egg – This helps add body to the filling. It gives a bit of richness that is very welcome.
  4. Marinara sauce – You can make your own or use store-bought. I like to use store-bought (Rao’s brand) to add some ease to this dish.
  5. Mozzarella – This adds a nice cheesy layer on top.

For the rest of the ingredients, please see the recipe card below.

How to Make Squash Stuffed Shells

  1. Boil the shells in salted water and drain them. I like to rinse them with cold water to stop the cooking. Drizzle them with a bit of olive oil to avoid them from sticking.
  2. In a pan, cook the delicata squash until they’re tender, about 5 minutes.
  3. Then add all of the filling ingredients to a bowl: the delicata squash, the ricotta, parmesan, egg, crushed red pepper and minced garlic. Mix it all together.
  4. Pour a little of the marinara sauce on the bottom of each of the baking dishes (I used two dishes).
  5. Add the filling to each of the shells. I like to create a bit of an assembly line. Get people involved to help!
  6. Place the shells in the baking dishes, side-by-side. Pour the marinara sauce on top of the shells. Sprinkle on mozzarella.
  7. Bake it for 25-30 minutes, until the cheese is melty and delicious.

Recipe Faqs

Can you make this ahead?

Yes! This is great to freeze. I like to assemble the entire dish and then freeze it. You can thaw it in the fridge overnight and bake it straight from the fridge.

Can this dish be made with other types of squashes?

Absolutely. I think butternut squash, kabocha, acorn or honeynut would be wonderful.

Can I make this vegan?

You can use a vegan ricotta, vegan cheese and eliminate the egg entirely.

Tips and Tricks

  1. Roasting the Squash – Feel free to roast the squash if you like. Just dice it up, toss it with some olive oil and roast it at 350F for about 15-20 minutes, until tender.
  2. Jumbo Shells vs. Medium Shells – Sometimes jumbo shells are difficult to find so feel free to use medium shells.

What to Serve with These shells

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5 from 5 votes

Squash Stuffed Shells

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Assembly: 15 minutes
Total: 1 hour
Servings: 10
These seasonal squash stuffed shells are perfect for a weeknight dinner. Stuffed with delicata squash, ricotta and parmesan and baked with melty mozzarella on top.


  • 1 pound jumbo or medium shells pasta
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 delicata squash, diced
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 (15-ounce) container of fresh ricotta
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan-Reggiano
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Pinch crushed red pepper, plus more for garnish
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 24 ounces of homemade or jarred, marinara (this can vary slightly), divided
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella


  • This recipe makes a pretty good amount so I recommend making two dishes (one for dinner and one for later). I made this in two 8-inch round baking pans. But feel free to use what you have.
  • Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the shells according to your package’s directions. For pasta that I’m then going to bake, I always cook it a minute or two under the recommended time. Drain and rinse well with cold water.
  • In a saute pan, set over medium heat, add the olive oil. When warm, add the delicata squash and sprinkle with a pinch of salt and a bunch of rounds of freshly ground pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes, until al dente. Set aside.
  • To a medium bowl, add the fresh ricotta, Parmesan, salt, egg, minced garlic and the reserved cooked delicata squash.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. The assembly takes a few minutes so this is the perfect time to preheat your oven.
  • To the bottom of one 8-inch round baking dish baking dish, add 1/2 cup of marinara sauce. Spread it around so it’s an even layer.
  • Scoop a teaspoon or two of the delicata squash/ricotta mixture into the shells and place them in the pan. Repeat until you’ve worked through all of the shells, moving to the second baking dish when needed (be sure to add some marinara sauce to the bottom of that pan too).
  • Pour about a cup marinara on top and then sprinkle with 1 cup of cheese. Transfer to the oven to bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the color is lightly golden brown. Garnish with Italian parsley and a sprinkle of crushed red pepper.


Tips and Tricks:
  1. Roasting the Squash – Feel free to roast the squash if you like. Just dice it up, toss it with some olive oil and roast it at 350F for about 15-20 minutes, until tender.
  2. Jumbo Shells vs. Medium Shells – Sometimes jumbo shells are difficult to find so feel free to use medium shells.


Serving: 4g | Calories: 103kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.002g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 382mg | Potassium: 185mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 798IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 130mg | Iron: 0.5mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
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Hi! I'm Adrianna and this is my cozy space on the internet that is super-charged by butter, flour and copious amounts of pasta. Stay awhile, will you!

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  1. Oh my, as always, you hit another home run. I look forward to trying this on a cold winter night. That looks like the best kind of healthy comfort food.

  2. I had to look up what a delicata squash is. And, now I know that those pretty squashes I see in the supermarket aren’t just for seasonal decor! So excited to now have a recipe that I can make with them. 🙂 That skillet of shells looks soooo yummy. Thanks for sharing! (PS–I am also now craving a Cinnabun.)