Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells

I love butternut squash.  Something about the sweetness of the squash once it’s been roasted and the fact that it’s actually good for you.  The only hard part is the prep.  I feel like once you cut the squash in half, it’s MUCH easier.  All you have to do is scoop the seeds out, place it on a sheet tray with some olive oil, salt and pepper and throw it in the oven to roast.  Once it’s roasted you can scoop the squash out with a spoon easily and use it however.  If you need raw butternut squash chunks, I sometimes cheat and buy the already peeled and cut, but if you have to peel it yourself, it’s kind of a pain.

Anyways, a few weeks ago, I had a butternut squash and some giant shell pasta and decided to make butternut squash stuffed shells. They turned out great!  I think the only thing that would have made them better would have been to top with a bechemel sauce, so maybe I’ll try that next time.

Start by roasting your butternut squash.  Cut squash in half, scoop out seeds and place on an aluminum foil lined baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Place in a 375 degree oven for about 45 minutes, or until squash is tender.

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Remove from oven, let cool slightly.  Scoop into a food processor.  Add salt, pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg, cream cheese,  and milk. Puree until smooth.

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Meanwhile, in a large pot of salted water, boil shell noodles until cooked.  Immediately drain and lay out flat so they do not stick together.

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Stuff the shells with the puree and lay in a baking dish.

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Top with shredded mozzarella cheese.   **Note: I think next time I make these, I will top with a bechemel sauce (white sauce) and then mozzarella.

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Bake at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until cheese is melted and the shells are warm and bubbly.

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Serve and enjoy!

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Recipe:

1 butternut squash
olive oil
salt/pepper
1 package of shell noodles
1/3 cup cream cheese
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
shredded mozzarella cheese
*bechemel sauce

Cut butternut squash in half and scoop out seeds.  Place on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast in a 375 degree oven for about 45 minutes, or until squash is tender.  Remove from oven and let cool slightly.  Scoop roasted squash into a food processor.  Add salt, pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg, cream cheese and milk.  Puree until smooth.  Meanwhile, cook shell noodles in a large pot of boiling, salted water.  Drain and separate noodles immediately.  When noodles are cool enough, fill each shell with a spoon or two of the puree and lay in a baking dish.  Top with bechemel sauce or mozzarella cheese (or both!) and bake in a 375 degree oven for about 20 minutes until cheese is melted and the shells are warm and bubbly.

Serve and enjoy!

Caroline