Gluten-Free Gluten-Free Mains Mains Recipe

Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells

Looking for a delicious cozy fall recipe? Whip up these savory Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells. Layered with a creamy butternut squash sauce and topped with stuffed vegan ricotta shells, mozzarella cheese, crushed red pepper, and fried sage leaves. These stuffed shells will be your new favorite go-to dinner this fall.  

The first thing you will want to do is make your creamy butternut squash sauce. Chop your butternut squash into small cubes, around 1 inch. Place the cubed squash on a baking pan evenly. Drizzle the squash with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 25-30 at 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 C) or until the squash is soft and tender. Transfer the squash to a high powered blender and add the rest of the sauce ingredients. Blend until the sauce is smooth and creamy. You can add additional seasoning after you taste it as well. 

Have you ever made vegan ricotta cheese? It is super easy and can be made in approximately five minutes. The first thing you are going to do is crumble the tofu into small pieces using a fork or your hands into a large bowl. Then transfer the tofu to a large bowl and add dairy-free milk, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, chopped spinach, dried thyme, dried oregano, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and mix.

TIPS WHEN MAKING YOUR STUFFED SHELLS 

  • I used a 9 x 13 inch baking dish when adding my  homemade butternut squash sauce to the bottom of my dish. You can use whatever size pan you have on hand for your stuffed shells. If you use a smaller pan you might just need to use multiple pans instead of one large pan.
  • The first thing you will want to do is add your sauce to the bottom of the pan. It is up to you on how much butternut squash sauce you add. I personally love tons of sauce, so I added it all to the bottom of my 9 x 13 inch pan. 
  • Stuffing your shells is the fun part. To stuff the shells you can either use your hand or a spoon to do so. Fill the large pasta shells with around 1-2 tablespoons of the vegan ricotta cheese mixture.  
  • Place your stuffed shells on top of the sauce. You can arrange the shells in whatever way is best for you. I made 5 rows with 4 shells per row. 
  • Lastly, top the shells with vegan mozzarella cheese. If you do not have cheese you can ship this step, but I highly recommend it. Bake your pasta for 10-15 minutes or until the cheese is hot and bubbly.

TOPPINGS 

I topped the stuffed shells with crushed red pepper, dried thyme, and fried sage. You can get super creative with what topping you add. Some other great toppings to use include…

Dried Basil

Fresh Thyme

Fresh Oregano

Chopped Spinach

Cashew Parmesan 

If you make these Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells I would love it if you would snap a photo of your food and share it with me on instagram @itsallgoodvegan.com. I can’t wait to see how you like it! 

These Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells are: 

Savory

Creamy

FIlling

Tasty

Easy to Assemble

Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

These shells are the perfect weekday dish that your whole family will love. Paired with a butternut squash sauce and stuffed with a creamy vegan ricotta filling.


Butternut Squash Sauce

  • 1 Tbsp oil, I used avocado
  • 8 cups butternut squash, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper, add more for a spicy sauce
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • 1 ½ cup unsweetened dairy-free milk

Stuffed Shells

  • 8 ounces jumbo pasta shells
  • 14 ounce container tofu, drained and patted dry
  • ½ small lemon, seeded and juiced
  • ¼ cup unsweetened dairy-free milk
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 ½ cup fresh spinach, chopped thinly

Toppings

  • 1 cup dairy-free mozzarella cheese
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 12 fried sage leaves

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 C).
  2. Place the cubed squash on a baking pan evenly. Drizzle the squash with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 25-30 or until the squash is fork tender.
  3. Transfer the squash to a high powered blender and add the milk, thyme, oregano, and crushed red pepper. Blend until the sauce is smooth and creamy. Taste sauce and add additional seasoning if needed.
  4. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook according to the back of the package. Drain water, and set aside.
  5. In a large bowl crumble the tofu with a spoon or your hands breaking into small pieces. Add the milk, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, spinach, dried thyme, dried oregano, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and mix.
  6. Coat the 9 x 13 inch baking dish with the butternut squash sauce.
  7. Assemble pasta shells by filling each shell with the tofu ricotta mixture, around 1-2 tablespoons. Place the stuffed shells facing up in the baking dish.
  8. Sprinkle shells with vegan mozzarella cheese and bake for 10-15 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Top with crushed red pepper and fried sage.

Make it Your Own

  • Don’t have fresh spinach? Just skip adding spinach altogether. Using frozen spinach will add too much water to the vegan ricotta mixture.
  • Are you gluten-free? Use gluten-free pasta shells.
  • Not a fan of fried sage? Add any type of toppings that you like!

11 comments on “Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells

  1. Wow that looks so good!! I recently made a pumpkin pasta with pumpkin sauce. It was vegan and delicious!

  2. What type of tofu is best to use in this recipe?

  3. yum

  4. This dish looks totally delicious!!! I’m wondering if unsweetened oat milk would have too strong of a flavor to use?

  5. How many squashes got you 8 cups?? Lol seems like a lot but just want to make sure.

    • Hi Alysha,
      I used a large butternut squash. You can use less, you just won’t have as much sauce.

    • Alysha D Nickles

      I ended using 2 smaller ones and it worked out well! Lots of extra sauce, but turned the leftover into soup today by cutting with vegetable broth. 👍

    • Yay! I am so happy to hear that. Thank you for making my recipe Alysha.

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