Ricotta shells with pesto and Tomato sauce

Pasta, pasta, pasta. I will eat it all day everyday, it is so amazing. These stuffed shells take vegan pasta to the next level, the tofu ricotta is not only way cheaper than regular ricotta but it is also easy to make and tastes very similar.

Even with the heat of this summer I cannot cut comfort meals like these stuffed shells from my meals, not that theirs anything wrong with pasta of course. Currently undergoing extreme kitchen renovations so typing up this post is making me jealous of my past meals.

While there are a few steps to this recipe they are very simple and the longest part is the actual baking of the dish, which is a great opportunity to clean up before your meal! In this dish I chose to add vegan ground beef to up my protein, however this is optional. Lentils would be another amazing addition in replacement aswell.

I love this vegan ricotta recipe for its simplicity. The fact that it is made out of a block of tofu yet tastes identical to ricotta amazes me each time I make it. Texture and flavour are both on point, and this ricotta cheese didn’t harm any animals or your body. Comment below your thoughts on this recipe!

You also have the option to bake this with vegan mozzarella on top, this makes such a cheesy delicious pasta dish, and I highly recommend if you have some vegan cheese on hand that you give this a shot.

Ingredients

  • 1 can tomato sauce ( make your own or buy pre-made) I used my arabiatta recipe, will link at the bottom.
  • 1 bag of pasta shells medium size
  • Package of favourite veggie ground beef ( I use yyves)

Riccotta

  • 1 package extra firm tofu
  • 1 table spoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Pesto

  • 1 avocado
  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon salt and pepper
  • 2 table spoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 table spoon lemon juice (add more to taste)

Method

  • Start a pot with water on the stove, bring to a boil and cook shells until aldante, remove from water and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
  • In a blender add all the ricotta cheese ingredients and blend until the desired consistency, I like mine just a little crumbly. Taste and add extra salt/ lemon juice as desired, set aside.
  • In a food processor or blender combine all the ingredients for the pesto and combine until a thick creamy consistency has formed. Set aside.
  • Using a cake pan or casserole dish pour half the tomato sauce and spread it around evenly.
  • Carefully take each shell individually and stuff the ricotta cheese then top it with the pesto and place it in the dish.
  • Ensure each piece of pasta is covered in part in tomato sauce and in part in pesto sauce to avoid overcooking of the shells.
  • Place in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes.

Optional: you can use pine nuts instead of walnuts in the pesto, I use walnuts because they are cheaper and I typically have them on hand. Adding on some vegan cheese on top in the oven takes this dish to the next level.

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