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To me, dinner is the most important meal of the day. It is the one meal during the day when we are all together as a family. This is something we try to do every day – gather together for dinner. This Stuffed Shells with Ground Beef & Cheese recipe is great for weeknight meals.
Today’s the last day of January and I am ready for a new month. This year started out with a lot of sickness in my house from strep throat to influenza getting passed around, it hasn’t been pretty. It put things in a funk and I am ready to take things head-on and turn it around.
One thing that helps me have a productive smooth week is lots of prepping on Sundays. I get the house straightened up, make sure all the laundry is caught up, make all my lists for the week, update my calendar, and plan meals for the week ahead. Plan. Plan. Plan. That is the key.
This past weekend I was struggling to come up with new meal ideas for the week. I feel like I am always making the same things. Pasta is a weekly must, as the boys have never had a pasta dish they didn’t like. However, I needed new inspiration. So I went to Pasta Matchmakers looking for new recipes to try.
They have a quiz that is designed to give a custom result based on what occasion you are planning for and the mood you are in. After taking the quiz with the hopes of getting a family meal for a weeknight, I was paired with this Stuffed Shells recipe which included all the boys’ favorite things: pasta, ground beef, cheese, and red sauce.
After I am done planning my meals, I make a very detailed grocery list and head to the store. While I was at Schnucks, I grabbed Mueller’s® Jumbo Shells for pasta night.
Stuffed Shells with Ground Beef & Cheese Recipe
- 20 Mueller’s® Jumbo Shells
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 15 ounce container ricotta (or cottage cheese)
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 (26 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce, divided
- Additional grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Cook pasta according to package directions, drain well and set aside.
Cook the beef & garlic in a large skillet over medium heat until lightly browned. Remove from heat and pour off excess drippings, if necessary.
Mix together ricotta, mozzarella, ½ cup Parmesan cheese, and egg in a large bowl.
Stir the ground beef into the cheese mixture, combining thoroughly.
Spread 1 cup spaghetti sauce in a 13×9-inch baking dish.
Spoon about ¼ cup of the cheese/ground beef mixture into each shell and place in baking dish in a single layer.
Sprinkle any remaining meat mixture over shells. Top shells with the remaining spaghetti sauce. Sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese.
Bake for 25 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 165°F.
Serve immediately. We like to have french bread and salad on pasta night.
The recipe is also fun for weekends to let the kids help make the mixture and stuff the shells. More family time!
If you are looking for new pasta dishes that are versatile, head to Pasta Matchmakers to find a recipe that fits into your evening. I have already planned another dish for next week and I hope to share it with you, too! You can also find more recipe inspiration here.
On Pasta Matchmakers, you can also take part in the Pasta Matchmaker Challenges! You can put your own spin on a Mueller’s® classic recipe and submit for a change to win prizes. Contest dates are as follows:
- Challenge #1: January 1 – January 21
- Challenge #2: January 22 – February 4
- Challenge #3: February 5 – February 18
- Challenge #4: February 19 – March 4
- Challenge #5: March 5 – March 18
- Challenge #6: March 19 – April 1
What pasta dish will you be making?