The Best Way To Freeze Stuffed Pasta Shells When Meal Prepping

Meal prepping pasta shells and stashing them in the freezer for later is an excellent self-care move because it saves future you heaps of time, money, and effort. But, if you're finding that the texture of your stuffed shells is soggy once reheated, you may need to reconsider your freezer technique. The best way to freeze stuffed pasta when meal prepping is to fill and freeze the shells flat on a sheet pan without the sauce before placing them in freezer bags.

This technique prevents the shells from sticking together and guarantees they won't become floppy and unpalatable once reheated. The pasta remains al dente because it hasn't had the opportunity to absorb any sauce as it chills. Freezing the shells without the sauce also leaves you with oodles of creative leeway when dinnertime arrives instead of locking you into a set flavor. You can pair the shells with a simple marinara one day, an alfredo the next, and a fragrant pesto later in the month. As long as the shells are prepped with their filling, you can create a new dish at your leisure simply by switching up the sauce, adding some veggies, and scattering some toppings, such as shredded Parmesan, panko breadcrumbs, or fresh herbs.

How to freeze stuffed pasta shells without the sauce

After boiling and stuffing your jumbo conchiglioni, space them out on a lined baking sheet before freezing to prevent them from clumping together or adhering to the base of the tray. You can either freeze them overnight until they are solid in the center or just wait for about half an hour for the shells to develop a slightly hard exterior. At either of these points, you can transfer the shells to a lidded container or into freezer bags, making sure to boost their freezer lifespan by removing any excess air. Alternatively, you can put the shells in the dish you'd like to eventually bake them in, cover the top in plastic wrap, and freeze the whole thing so you can conveniently cook the dish later with the quick addition of sauce.

To cook the frozen shells, add a generous helping of sauce to your baking dish, pile in your stuffed pasta, and pour more sauce over the top with a scattering of your favorite cheese before baking until golden and bubbling. The next time you're making baked stuffed shells for dinner, why not boil an extra batch to stuff and freeze for later? When your belly rumbles for a quick Italian feast, you can simply call on your freezer instead of the nearest take out joint.