Lightened Ricotta Stuffed Shells With Italian Sausage Ragu


Ingredients: 12 ounces (dry) jumbo pasta shells (whole wheat if available),12 ounces turkey Italian sausage (3 links), casing removed,1 large onion, diced,3 cloves garlic, minced,2 cups water,14 1/2 ounces stewed tomatoes,6 ounces tomato paste,15 ounces non-fat or reduced fat ricotta,1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella, divided,1 cup shredded Parmesan, divided,1/4 cup fresh basil, cut chiffonade,3 egg whites

  1. Prepare shells according to package directions minus 2 minutes (the shells will finish in the sauce) and drain.
  2. Lay the shells out on foil or a backing sheet so that they don't stick together. Discard any that are broken.
  3. Meanwhile, in a sautee pan over medium-high heat, brown the sausage.
  4. Drain any excess fat and add the onion. Continue to cook until the onions are translucent.
  5. Add garlic and cook for an additional minute.
  6. Add water, stewed tomatoes and tomato paste. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
  7. In a large bowl, combine ricotta, 1/2 cup mozzarella, 1/2 cup Parmesan, basil and egg whites.
  8. Preheat oven to 350F.
  9. Spay a 13 x 9-inch baking dish with non stick. Fill shells with about 1 tablespoon of the cheese mixture each and place in a tight single layer in the baking dish.
  10. Pour the ragu over the shells and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses. Cover and bake until the sauce is bubbling, about 30 minutes.
  11. Remove, uncover and let stand about 10 minutes.


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