Cheesy Bacon Kale Stuffed Shells
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time45 mins
- 1 (10-ounce) package Pure Farmland All-Natural Uncured Bacon
- 1/2 pound medium shells
- 1 bunch kale, cut into very thin slices and then minced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 7 ounces fresh ricotta
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano
- Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 12 ounces jarred marinara sauce
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella
- 1 tablespoon minced Italian parsley
To Make the Bacon:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a cooling rack. Place the bacon side-by-side on the cooling rack. Transfer to the oven to bake until crispy and golden brown, about 20 to 25 minutes. Place the bacon on a few layers of paper towels to drain. When cool enough to handle, chop up the bacon into bite-size pieces.
To Make the Stuffed Shells:
I made this in a 10-inch skillet but feel free to use what you have that’s comparable. A square baking dish or round baking dish would also work.
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 kale and cook until softened, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add a pinch of salt and mix in the garlic cloves. Cook for an additional minute or so.
To a medium bowl, add the sautéed kale and garlic mixture, fresh ricotta, Parmesan, crushed red pepper, black pepper, few pinches of salt and beaten egg. Mix until combined. Then fold in the bite-size bacon.
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 your 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 bacon/ricotta mixture into the shells and place them in the pan. Repeat until you’ve worked through all of the shells.
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.
Serving: 4g | Calories: 350kcal | Carbohydrates: 71g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 44g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 140mg | Sodium: 120mg | Potassium: 300mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 100IU | Calcium: 50mg