These vegan stuffed shells are filled with our favorite super creamy dairy-free spinach artichoke dip. It’s easy to make and definitely a crowd pleaser! Vegan.
*This recipe was originally posted on 8/16/16 but I updated it with better instructions on 3/19/19.
**This post contains affiliate links.
Last week, my husband informed me that vegan stuffed shells florentine is one of his favorite meals and that he would loveee to have it for dinner one night this week. He doesn’t usually make food requests so I was super happy to hear him ask for something with spinach in it!
How to Make Vegan Stuffed Shells
I bet you’re wondering how to make easy vegetarian stuffed shells without ricotta, dairy cheese, or milk. Am I right? Travis loves my vegan spinach artichoke dip because it’s so buttery, rich, and creamy, so I thought it would be the perfect filling for these stuffed jumbo shells! It’s almost like a vegan cashew ricotte but even better in my opinion! The first time I made this vegan recipe, I didn’t even tell my husband that I made the shells without any dairy and he couldn’t tell the difference. That tells me that this eggless stuffed shells recipe will please vegans and non-vegans alike!
There’s very little prep work to make this meal because I use shortcuts like jarred (or canned) artichoke hearts, frozen spinach (no washing, drying, or chopping) and cashews that you don’t have to soak for hours (only boil for 10 minutes!) before blending them ( Read this post–> to see which blender I use to blend my cashews into a creamy sauce).
Start by boiling the raw cashews for 10 minutes and then drain the water and put the cashews into a high-powered blender. Add the unsweetened coconut milk, salt and pepper and blend on high until the sauce is smooth and creamy.
While you make the cashew cream sauce in a blender, you can start sauteeing the onions, artichokes, garlic, and spinach in a separate pan. Stir in the cashew cream sauce and try not to eat all the filling before you can stuff the shells. Trust me, it’s really hard not to eat it all.
While you’re making the spinach artichoke dip filling, boil the vegan pasta shells in salted water in a separate pot. Drain the pasta shells and fill each shell with the spinach artichoke dip. In a large casserole dish, put a few spoonfuls of your favorite marinara sauce on the bottom of the dish and lay the stuffed shells on top. Top with more marinara sauce (and vegan shredded cheese if you like) and and then bake it at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes until it’s hot and bubbly.
Can You Freeze Vegan Stuffed Shells?
Yes, you definitely can freeze these vegan pasta shells! Prepare the stuffed shells in a freezer-safe casserole dish and follow all the steps but don’t bake it. When you’re ready to eat the shells, you can bake them right from the freezer. Just make sure the casserole dish you use is okay to go from freezer to oven, you don’t want it to crack while it’s baking. Also, you may need to bake it a little bit longer. When the stuffed shells are hot and bubbly, it’s time to eat!
Can You Make Vegan Stuffed Shells with Tofutti Ricotta?
I’m sure you could make stuffed shells with tofutti ricotta but I prefer to cook as much as possible from scratch so I decided to use my homemade spinach artichoke dip as the filling. I knew the dip would be delicious with pasta because I also use it as a filling for our favorite vegan lasagna! Try it, I think you’ll love it too!
Can You Make Vegan Stuffed Shells with Butternut Squash?
Yes, you can definitely make vegan stuffed shells with butternut squash! I’ve acually had that exact dish (with a vegan butter sage sauce…YUM) at a restaurant in New York City. I haven’t tried duplicating the recipe yet but I’m definitely adding it to my list because it’s delicious. Until then, try this recipe. Vegan sweet potato stuffed shells would be yummy too if you prefer sweet potatoes over butternut squash.
What If You Don’t Want to Make Your Own Filling
I really hope that you try my spinach artichoke dip filling (because it’s delicious!) but if you can’t eat cashews or don’t want to make your own filling then I would highly recommend using Kite Hill Ricotta instead. I love Kite Hill products (this post is not sponsored), I think they’re absolutely delicious and I actually use their almond ricotta for my vegan Spanakopita recipe! I think vegan stuffed shells with Kite Hill ricotta filling would be super tasty. If you choose to follow my recipe, just add the Kite Hill ricotta when the recipe says to mix the cashew cream with the sauteed onions, artichokes, garlic, and spinach.
Where Do You Buy Eggless Stuffed Shells?
For some reason, it’s really difficult to find vegan jumbo shells at the grocery store! Have you run into this problem too? I bought the Barilla jumbo shells because that’s what my store had and they’re accidentally vegan. However, I would prefer an organic brand but I haven’t found one yet. If you know of one please let me know in a comment!
We both agreed these are the best stuffed shells ever! This recipe is definitely going into our monthly meal rotation and it earned a spot in my “keepers” recipe box! I hope you give this vegan stuffed shells recipe a try! Seriously, it’s so delicious! You won’t even miss the dairy cheese or ricotta. Pinky promise.
Side Dishes to Serve with Vegan Stuffed Pasta
If you make this vegan shells and cheese recipe, please share your picture on Instagram and tag @Stacey_Homemaker so I can see your delicious creation!
Vegan Stuffed Shells
- 16 oz jumbo shells
- vegan spinach artichoke dip (Find the recipe link below)
- 12 oz jar your favorite marinara sauce
- parsley to garnish (Optional)
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Prepare the vegan spinach artichoke dip. While you're making the dip, boil the shells. Drain the shells and set them aside to cool until you can handle them.
- You can either spoon the filling into the shells or put the filling into a gallon Ziploc bag, cut the tip off, and pipe the filling into the shells.
- Put 3-4 Tbsp of marinara sauce in the bottom of a 9x11 oven-safe casserole dish and spread it evenly around. Place the stuffed shells into the casserole dish. Top with the remaining marinara sauce. Cover with parchment paper or foil and bake for 20-25 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
- If you don't want to make your own spinach artichoke filling, I would recommend you using 2 containers of Kite hill almond ricotta instead. Just follow the recipe but add the ricotta when it calls for the cashew cream.
- If you like a particular vegan shredded cheese you could sprinkle it over the top of the casserole before you bake it for extra flavor.