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A baking dish of golden cheesy stuffed shells topped with parsley

Ground Turkey Stuffed Shells

4.89 from 9 votes
Large pasta shells stuffed to the brim with ground turkey and cheese and covered with tomato sauce and yes, even more cheese! Serve with a basket of addictive cheddar bay biscuits!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 16 large shells


  • 16 jumbo pasta shells
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 24 ounce jar spaghetti sauce, choose your favorite brand, or use homemade
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 large egg
  • ¼ cup parsley, chopped
  • 8 ounces ricotta cheese, or reduced fat ricotta cheese
  • 8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese, divided (or shredded 2% mozzarella cheese)
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  • Preheat your oven to 350°F and spray an 9x12" baking dish with nonstick spray - set aside.
  • Cover the bottom of the baking dish with half the spaghetti sauce (12 ounces' worth). Set aside.
  • While the oven is warming up, cook pasta al dente according to the directions on the box (typically around 9 minutes). Once cooked, drain and set aside to cool.
  • In a large pan, cook ground turkey until browned, stirring frequently. Add garlic and stir for a minute or two until fragrant. Remove from heat.
    Note: If you don’t have garlic cloves, you can substitute: ½ teaspoon minced garlic,⅛ teaspoon garlic powder, or ½ teaspoon garlic salt.
  • In a medium bowl, lightly beat one egg. Add the cooked ground turkey, ricotta cheese, half the mozzarella cheese, parmesan cheese, and parsley. Add a little salt and pepper if you’d like, and mix well.
  • Using a large spoon, stuff each shell with the ground turkey mixture. It can be kind of tricky, depending on how “curly” your noodles are, but I promise it’s worth it! I usually spoon mixture up under one of the curves and then fill the rest – it seems to be the easiest.
  • As you’re stuffing the shells, place each shell in the glass baking dish. Place them closely together so they don’t tip over.
  • Pour the remaining 12 ounces spaghetti sauce over the shells, then cover in the remaining half of mozzarella cheese.
  • Bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes (or until the cheese is bubbling on the top).
  • Serve immediately with a side of garlic bread or cheesy biscuits and enjoy!



  • Feel free to substitute the ground turkey for ground beef, ground pork, Italian sausage, or shredded chicken. You could also swap in your favorite meat substitute. Or you can remove the meat altogether and add spinach instead! Not gonna lie, sometimes I like the vegetarian way even better.
  • If you don’t have garlic cloves, you can substitute any of the below:
    • ½ teaspoon minced garlic
    • ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
    • ½ teaspoon garlic salt
  • You can use reduced fat ricotta or 2% mozzarella to help cut down on the calorie count a little.
  • You can also add Asiago cheese, or substitute the parmesan cheese with it.
  • Want to add a little spice? Add some red pepper flakes to the ground turkey mixture!
  • Storage: Cover your baking dish tightly with plastic wrap or put in an airtight container to store in the fridge for up to 1 week.
  • Reheat: You'll reheat them the same way you initially baked them - in the oven at 350°F for 20 minutes or until heated through. But this time, cover the baking dish with aluminum foil.
  • Freezing: After you've done all the prep and assembly in your baking dish, cover the pan tightly with plastic wrap and foil and place in the freezer. To thaw, put the dish in the fridge the night before (or the morning of). Then let it come to room temperature for about 30 minutes, and then bake according to the recipe instructions.


Calories: 145kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 46mg | Sodium: 171mg | Potassium: 140mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 285IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 144mg | Iron: 1mg
Course Dinner, Entree
Cuisine Italian
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