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stuffed shells in a cast iron skillet
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5 from 1 vote

Sausage and Chard Stuffed Shells in Butternut Squash Sauce

Stuffed shells with cheesy sausage and chard filling. All baked in a creamy butternut squash sauce for a healthy, delicious seasonal dinner.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Main Dish
Keyword: baked pasta, fall recipe, pasta
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 518kcal
Author: Jess Smith via Inquiring Chef
Cost: $9.00


  • Cast Iron Skillet or 9x13 Baking Dish
  • Sauce Pan
  • Saute Pan


  • 4 cups Butternut Squash Sauce
  • 24 Jumbo Pasta Shells (about 12 oz)
  • 12 ounces Mild Italian Sausage
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • ½ Onion, chopped
  • 4 large leaves Chard, stems discarded, very finely chopped (Swiss or rainbow)
  • 4 ounces Mozzarella, grated
  • 12 ounces Part-Skim Ricotta Cheese
  • Shredded Parmesan Cheese, for serving (optional)


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spread butternut squash sauce on the bottom of a large oven-safe skillet or 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
  • Cook pasta according to package directions.
  • While pasta boils, heat a large saute pan over medium heat. Add sausage, breaking it apart with a spatula while it cooks. Cook until golden brown and crumbled, about 5 minutes. Transfer sausage to a large mixing bowl and return pan to heat. Add butter and, when it melts, add onions and cook until onions are tender, about 5 minutes more. Add chard and cook until chard wilts, about 2 minutes (add the lid to help it cook faster). Add chard mixture to the sausage. Top with mozzarella and ricotta and stir to combine.
  • Spoon filling into a large plastic bag and seal the bag. Cut a triangle out of one of the bottom corners of the bag. Hold one pasta shell at a time in your hand and use the other hand to squeeze filling from the plastic bag into the shell. (You can also just spoon the filling into the shells if you prefer.)
  • Arrange the filled shells on top of the butternut squash sauce. Bake until the dish is warmed through and the shells are just beginning to turn golden brown on the tops, 12 to 15 minutes.
  • Serve immediately, with parmesan cheese on top.


To freeze: This dish freezes well. Assemble the entire pasta and then cover tightly with foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost at room temperature before proceeding with baking instructions.
Print and attach the label below so cooking instructions are ready when you are!
stuffed shells freezer label


Serving: 4g | Calories: 518kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 695mg | Potassium: 764mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 12282IU | Vitamin C: 31mg | Calcium: 330mg | Iron: 3mg