Elevate your pasta night with this Skillet Tuscan Pumpkin Stuffed Shells. This recipe fuses the rustic charm of Tuscan flavors with the cozy essence of fall, all cooked up in a single, delicious skillet. Featuring jumbo pasta shells filled with a creamy blend of creamy pumpkin, gooey golden mozzarella cheese, sundried tomatoes + kale. It's a harmonious marriage of rich, savory flavors, making it the perfect fall weeknight comfort food. Make ahead option!
Among all the pasta recipes I've had the joy of sharing on Orchids + Sweet Tea, this Skillet Tuscan Pumpkin Stuffed Shells recipe holds a special place as one of my personal top five favorites---it's truly irresistible. I mean, who can say no to the appeal of creamy pasta in its many beautiful forms, especially when it's paired with the rich, velvety magic of pumpkin + golden cheesy goodness? Plus there's something so fun about jumbo shells, the way they cradle those creamy fillings makes it a HUGE hit with my family.
I am all about those Tuscan flavors too—they're so cozy and comforting! If you're a fan, be sure to check out my 'Marry Me’ Tuscan Chicken Gnocchi Soup, Comforting Tuscan White Bean Chickpea Soup,Easy Weeknight Creamy Tuscan Ravioli and last but certainly not least this drool-worthy Baked Tuscan Chicken and Gnocchi
This vegetarian pasta recipe is not only incredibly delicious, but it's also bursting with umami flavor, making it a hit with both kids + adults. It's a true crowd-pleaser, and the best part is that it comes together with simple ingredients and is easy and straightforward to make. Just pop it in the oven, and in just 30 minutes, it transforms into a golden masterpiece that'll leave everyone craving more. If you're looking for more fall pasta inspiration check out my roundup of 25 Comforting Fall Pasta Recipes next!
Creating this dish is a breeze: Start by boiling your pasta and prepare the delightful pumpkin Tuscan sauce then the enjoyable part is filling those shells with the rich pumpkin-packed saucy goodness. Finally, bake it in the oven until it reaches a golden, cheesy perfection.
Creating your own special Tuscan blend is a simple and quick process, taking just a few minutes of your time. However, if you're in a rush or want an easy solution, you can always choose a quality pre-packaged option like McCormick's.
Here's what you'll need if you want to make your own + Feel free to customize to your liking!
Here, I've curated a list of cooking + baking essentials that I use to achieve my favorite baked goods or cooked meals, especially with this Skillet Tuscan Pumpkin Stuffed Shells Everything from my fave baking sheet, dutch ovens, immersion hand-blender, mixing bowls, and more. SEE THEM HERE!
While I love this Tuscan Pumpkin Stuffed Shells Recipe dinner as-is, straight from the pan, you can dress it up with toppings if you like.
For extra flavor, color, and texture, you can try:
If you discover a new favorite topping idea, be sure to let me know in the comments section below!
If you aren't the biggest fan of sundried tomatoes or just don't have them on hand, here are a few great alternatives for you to choose from so that you can still enjoy this delicious pumpkin pasta dish:
If you'd like to add protein to this Tuscan Pumpkin Stuffed Shells dish, it's easy to do, regardless of your diet!
When it comes to serving these mouthwatering Tuscan Pumpkin Stuffed Shells there are some options that will truly elevate your meal. First off, don't forget to have some bread on hand. I love this homemade Cheesy Kale Garlic Bread. Trust me; you'll want to dip it into that luscious, saucy goodness.
If you want a little freshness, serve it with a salad on the side, like this Fall Harvest BBQ Chickpea Kale Salad, Fall Harvest Apple Kale Salad or this Best Buffalo Chickpea Kale Salad. It's like a fresh burst of flavor that complements this easy weeknight dinner beautifully.
But here's the thing. This creamy pumpkin pasta is so darn amazing that you can honestly enjoy it all by itself. Seriously, the giant shell pasta + luscious pumpkin sauce is everything! It's just bursting with flavor. So, feel free to dig in and savor every single bite. It's a dish that stands tall on its own!
Traditionally, this dish is made with jumbo pasta shells or conchiglioni shells. However, if you can't find them or don't have any on hand, here are some other great options to consider-
I love using jumbo shells because they do a beautiful job of embracing and holding onto the sauce. But any of these pasta varieties would work for this dish -
And if you want to just use the sauce without 'stuffing the pasta' here are a few more options -
It’s all about the seasoning! Whether you choose to keep things simple or a bit more complex, adding seasoning to your sauce is KEY! Adding flavor to the base of your sauce with garlic and seasonings (Tuscan seasoning in this case) will add more depth to your creamy pasta and allow everything else to marry together well.
Just let it all simmer together and slowly bubble as the seasonings infuse deeply.
Oh, pumpkin, the unsung hero of the fall season! It's not just about those delightful pumpkin spice lattes; this versatile veggie packs a punch when it comes to health benefits. First off, it's loaded with essential nutrients and antioxidants like beta-carotene, which is great for your eyes + skin. Plus, its high fiber content can do wonders for your digestive system and even help with weight management.
Pumpkins also give your immune system a boost with vitamin C and zinc. So, whether you're sipping on a pumpkin latte or indulging in another pumpkin dish, you're doing your body some real good!
It must be noted that this recipe (and most sweet or savory pumpkin recipes) calls for 100% pumpkin puree, NOT pumpkin pie filling! Pumpkin pie filling is quite literally the sweet pumpkin custard that you find in traditional pumpkin pie. It already contains sugar, cinnamon, clove, and other ingredients that make a pie filling.
Adding pumpkin pie filling to a dish that calls for 100% pumpkin puree will add an un-welcomed sweetness, essentially ruining the dish. Even if you are unsure of what type of pumpkin a recipe is calling for, go for the 100% pumpkin puree. I love using the brand Libby's.
Any leftovers can be kept in a tightly sealed container and refrigerated for up to 3-4 days.
Yes! Cook your pasta and let it cool completely before storing in an air-tight refrigerator for 3-5 days. Place the pumpkin puree in an air tight container to refrigerate overnight as well; you can season it with a bit of tuscan seasoning as well if desired. On the day of, remove everything to room temp., about 10-15 minutes and continue assembly STEPS.
Of course! To add a bit more flavor to this dish, you can always feel free to add in your favorite greens such as spinach, broccolini, collards, etc.
Absolutely! While Parmesan cheese is great, you can experiment with other cheeses like Gruyère, Pecorino Romano, or even a blend for unique flavors.
You can use coconut milk or almond milk for a lighter, dairy-free option, or you can try Greek yogurt for a creamy texture with fewer calories.
If you enjoyed this Skillet Tuscan Pumpkin Stuffed Shells recipe, make sure to add these irresistible pasta dishes to your "must-make next" list!
If you tried this Skillet Tuscan Pumpkin Stuffed Shells recipe or any other recipe on my website, please please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how you go in the 📝 comments below. I love hearing from you.