Stuffed with a rich pesto cream cheese and baked in a flavorful homemade bolognese sauce, this cream cheese stuffed shells bolognese tastes like authentic Italian food, only made SUPER fast and easy!
Holy heeeeeck, it’s Italian all up in here today.
I don’t know about you but I’m ready to embrace my inner Italian grandma and just go live in those shells for the rest of my life. Peace out, girl scout.
For some reason, this stuffed shells bolognese just reminds me of something my mom or grandma would make. It’s like cozy childhood comfort food to the MAX that literally anybody would swoon over. And crave repeatedly like myself.
February is just one of those months where you gotta embrace all the comfort food which is gonna mean a lot ‘o carbs. Don’t even try to fight it, just enjoy the ride and especially enjoy the pasta.
These stuffed shells bolognese are quite literally Italian food for the record books. They remind me of something that I would order at a nicer Italian restaurant and pay an arm and a leg for at the same time. ??
Spoiler alert, these little guys are literally a BREEZE to make at home! Honest to goodness, these are about as easy as homemade Italian night gets. TWO major steps, guys, check it out. >>>
- Bolognese sauce. Honestly if you’re short on time, you could use a pre-made pasta sauce but hear me out: homemade bolognese sauce is meaty, incredibly flavorful, saucy, and has that incredible scratch-made taste. It’s so worth the extra few minutes.
- Stuffed shells. Cooked jumbo shells are going to get filled with a SUPER simple pesto cream cheese. Filling the shells is probably the most time-consuming part of the entire dinner process. A little tedious, but NBD.
- Bolognese sauce goes in the 9×13. Stuffed shells go right on top. Spoon some more of that bolognese sauce on top. Cover the whole deal in Parm, ya know we gotta.
Holy freaking cow, guys….I can’t even exaggerate how incredible this stuffed shells bolognese is going to make your house smell. And how incredibly happy they are going to make you and the fam. If you have any leftovers, they keep BEAUTIFULLY in the fridge for reheating.
Pro tip? More grated Parm on your on personal plate. Always. Just do it.
Pesto Cream Cheese Stuffed Shells Bolognese
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and minced
- 1 stalk celery, finely minced
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/3 cup white wine
- 1/2 cup tomato paste
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1/2 cup half and half cream
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup basil pesto
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 24 jumbo shells, cooked according to package instructions
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
- In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, brown ground beef, carrot, celery, and onion until beef is no longer pink. Add garlic and saute 1 minute until fragrant.
- Reduce heat to medium and add tomato paste, stirring until smooth. Add bay leaf and chicken broth. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and let simmer 20-30 minutes. Remove from heat and discard bay leaf. Stir in half and half and salt and pepper to taste. Pour sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 pan and set aside.
- In a small bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Beat in pesto and salt and pepper to taste until creamy.
- Fill cooked pasta shells with cream cheese mixture and place on top of bolognese sauce. Sprinkle top with Parmesan cheese.
- Bake stuffed shells at 375F 20-25 minutes until sauce is bubbly and Parmesan cheese is melted. Sprinkle with parsley. Serve stuffed shells warm and enjoy!