Lazy Sunday Shells: Veggie Cheesy Pasta Shells

20 Feb

During the winter months, Kevin and I rarely move from the couch on Sundays.  We catch up on our DVR-scheduled TV shows and just relax.  This recipe is so easy that it’s for all the lazy bones like Kevin and me.

Whenever I cook on Sundays I tend to lean toward a pasta dish because it reminds me of my childhood.  Growing up in NY, I would typically eat dinner with my mom’s large Italian family on Sundays – aunts, uncles and cousins all in tow.

I included the recipe for the veggie pasta shells in this post, but keep in mind that an Italian usually just eye-balls the amount of spices.  I never strictly follow a recipe because my mom taught me to cook by just watching her when I was younger, just as she learned when she was a little girl.  Not to mention, sometimes it’s just simply trial and error, so give it a shot and let me know how it turns out!


  • 1/2 red onion diced
  • 1/2 sweet onion diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 red sweet pepper diced
  • 1 yellow sweet pepper diced
  • 1 cup broccoli
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1/2 can of artichoke hearts
  • 1 14 oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb. whole grain pasta small shells
  • 1 14 oz. can of garbanzo beans
  • 2 tbsp. dried italian seasoning
  • 1 tbsp. dried basil
  • 1 tbsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tbsp. dried parsley
  • 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp. crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 cup italian shredded soy cheese
  • 1/4 cup parmesan soy cheese

Heat extra virgin olive oil over medium high heat in skillet.  Cook onions and garlic in oil for 5 minutes or until browned.  Add brocoli florets, carrots, peppers, and then add all spices.  Cook for 5 minutes and then add mushrooms.  Stir occasionally until tender.  Rinse canned tomatoes and garbanzo beans in strainer and add to skillet.  Add spinach and wilt.  Boil pasta and drain.  Add thin layer of sauce to large pot, then add thin layer of pasta; alternate layers.  Mix cheese in pasta blend and melt.  Then add parmesan cheese to the top.  Let sit for a few minutes.  Add crushed red pepper for more spice to the dish.

This is what my sauce initially looked like:

Finished product should look like this:

Accompaniments: side salad with tomatoes, cucumbers, croutons and balsamic dressing








Vege-meter: 7


2 Responses to “Lazy Sunday Shells: Veggie Cheesy Pasta Shells”

  1. Mom February 21, 2011 at 4:57 pm #

    I just love it! Mom is student to the child. Can’t wait to try it.

    • aleyton11 February 21, 2011 at 5:12 pm #

      I will always be the student in your kitchen! Thanks Mom!

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