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Blue Crab Marinara with Stuffed Shells Florentine

Blue Crab Marinara with Stuffed Shells Florentine

This dinner recipe takes tried-and-true, florentine-style stuffed shells, and elevates them to a new high with fresh blue crab.
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Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine pasta, seafood
Servings 6 people


  • 30 large pasta shells uncooked
  • 2 cup Marinara
  • 8 oz fresh lump crab preferably Blue Crab
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 5 oz fresh spinach leaves ~4 cups
  • 15 oz part-skim ricotta
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • ¼ cup chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tsp kosher salt plus more for the pasta water
  • ¼ tsp fresh cracked pepper
  • ½ cup fresh shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 2 cup mozzarella divided


  • Heat oven to 350F.
  • In a bowl, combine the marinara and crab. Set aside.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add a handful of kosher salt and the pasta shells. Cook to al dente as package directions dictate. Drain and rinse quickly with cold water.
  • While pasta is cooking, heat a large, nonstick skillet on medium-high heat. Add the oil, onions, and garlic. Saute until the onions are translucent. Add the spinach and cook, tossing, until spinach is nice and wilty. Transfer the spinach mixture to a cutting board and chop finely.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the chopped spinach mixture, ricotta, egg, salt, parsley, basil,  pepper, parmesan, and 1 c mozzarella.
  • In a 9x13 baking dish, spread the crab marinara. One by one, take a pasta shell, spoon in a couple tablespoons of ricotta-spinach mixture, and place on the crab marinara in the baking dish. Cover baking dish with foil and bake at 350F for 30 minutes. Remove foil, top with remaining 1 cup mozzarella cheese, and bake another 5 minutes. Serves 6.

Calorie count is purely an estimate calculated using an online application to serve as a guide and not to be taken as accurate nutritional information. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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