Spinach & Chickpea Stuffed Shells

chicotta - RT 2

I tried this recipe for the first time last week and I love it! In this recipe we basically use chickpeas as a base to make a vegan ricotta cheese. And who doesn’t love a stuffed shell! This is very filling and although you’re blending the ingredients, it has a slightly crunchy flavor to it.

Spinach & Chickpea Stuffed Shells

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Intermediate
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Adapted from One Ingredient Chef


  • 1/2 lb of chickpeas
  • 2/3 cup soaked cashews
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast (this is super easy to find in stores like the Vitamin Shoppe and gives the recipe a cheesy taste)
  • 1 lemon (juice)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup cooked spinach
  • 6 cups marinara sauce
  • 12 oz jumbo pasta shells
  • 1/4 cup chopped basil
  • 1/4 cup ground cashews


  1. Soak the cashews in water for  1-12 hours to soften them up.
  2. Cook 1 cup of spinach
  3. Combine the cashews, chickpeas (drained & rinsed), nutritional yeast, salt, garlic powder, and lemon juice in a food processor and let it run until the mixture is smooth and creamy. If it happens to be so thick that it crumbles, feel free to add water until the consistency is somewhat firm and creamy.
  4. Transfer this mixture to a bowl and use a spoon to gently fold in about 1 cup cooked spinach
  5. Put the mixture in the refrigerator while preparing everything else (As with most plant-based cheeses, the flavors and textures improve after being refrigerated for several hours)
  6. Cook the jumbo shells according to the package instructions until al dente. You’ll need about 20 whole shells, and the average (12 oz) box has a bit more than that. Some shells will break or become deformed during cooking, however, so it’s best to make a few extra
  7. Pre-heat the oven to 400º F
  8. Carefully hold the shell open in one hand and gently spoon in about 2 tablespoons of the mixture. This is a tedious process, but take your time and the final results will be completely worth the effort.
  9. Add 2/3 of the marinara sauce to the bottom of a 9×13 pan and place each shell on top. Drizzle the remaining marinara over the top of the shells. Cover this pan with foil and bake for about 20 minutes until everything is thoroughly heated.
  10. Serve and enjoy


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