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Pierogi Stuffed Shells

These easy Pierogi Stuffed Shells have all the delicious flavor of homemade pierogi but without the fuss of making dough!

Jumbo pasta shells are cooked and filled with cheesy mashed potatoes, topped with buttery sautéed onions, and then baked in the oven to make these “lazy” pierogi that are sure to be a hit!

David and I have been making his grandma’s homemade pierogi for years (I highly recommend you try them sometime!). They’re not hard to make. The whole process just takes a bit of time.

And, well, sometimes life just gets too darn busy.

So when we want some pierogi but don’t have the time to make them from scratch and don’t have any left in the freezer, these stuffed pierogi shells are my go-to shortcut.

In fact, they’re so simple, so good and the flavor is so spot-on that, lately, I’ve been making them increasingly more often!

I just take the same potato and cheese filling that I use to make homemade pierogi, and I fill pasta shells with it instead of making pasta dough.

For the perfect finishing touch, I top them with onions that have been sautéed in butter. They make the dish extra delicious and, honestly, it’s just not the same without them.

If you love pierogi, I really think you’ll love these pierogi pasta shells too. They’re great for Meatless Mondays, Fridays during Lent, on holidays, or any day of the year!

top-down view of a baking dish filled with pierogi stuffed shells and a serving spoon on the side

Ingredients You Need

  • Cooking spray
  • Potatoes (Russet or Yukon Gold)
  • Jumbo pasta shells
  • Butter
  • Onions
  • Extra-sharp cheddar cheese (yellow or white)
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Fresh parsley (for garnish; optional)

Note: Ingredient amounts are in the recipe card below.

Note: The above video is just a brief overview of the steps. Scroll down to the recipe card for the full printable recipe with ingredient amounts and detailed instructions.

Recipe Tips & Tidbits

  • Multi-tasking is key to having these ready to eat in just a little over an hour.
    • Get the potatoes on to boil first. Then put the pasta water on to boil and cook the pasta so they’re both going at the same time. While you’re waiting, sauté the onions.
  • For the correct potato-to-cheese ratio, you want 1½ pounds of potatoes after they are peeled, not before. About 2 pounds of unpeeled potatoes should get you there.
  • Make sure your potato and cheese mixture is well-seasoned with salt and pepper. It shouldn’t be salty, just really flavorful…because if it’s bland, it will be disappointing.
  • Bake these in the oven just until they are heated through, being careful not leave them in there too long, which could cause the pasta to start getting hard or crunchy. You want them to stay soft.

Variations & Substitutions

  • You could cook the potatoes in an Instant Pot instead of on the stove. Follow my recipe for Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes, but don’t add any butter or milk.
  • Extra-sharp cheddar provides the best cheesy flavor to the potato mixture, but you could use a mild or regular sharp cheddar if you prefer (or you could even try other types of cheese).
  • After the shells come out of the oven, top them with crumbled cooked bacon and serve with some sour cream. It tastes similar to a loaded baked potato!
pierogi stuffed shells in a baking dish with a serving spoon

Storing Leftovers, Freezing & Reheating

Storing Leftovers

Store leftover pierogi stuffed shells, once cooled, in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 to 4 days.

Freezing

You can freeze the leftover already-baked stuffed shells, or you can freeze the assembled but unbaked shells for a make-ahead freezer meal to have at the ready!

To freeze: Cool completely, then place the shells on a baking sheet lined with wax paper or parchment paper. Freeze until solid, then remove the shells from the baking sheet and place them in a freezer bag, remove as much air as possible, and freeze for up to 2 to 3 months.

Thaw completely in the refrigerator before reheating.

Reheating

To reheat, place the stuffed shells in a baking dish, add a tablespoon or two of water to the bottom of the dish so the shells don’t dry out, and cover the dish tightly with aluminum foil. Bake in the oven at 325°F just until heated through.

6 pierogi stuffed shells on a white plate with a fork and another plate of shells and the baking dish filled with shells in the background

What To Serve With Pierogi Stuffed Shells

If I’m serving these as a meatless meal (or even if I’m not), I like to make sure I pair them with vegetables of some kind. Some of my favorites are:

If I’m not going meatless, I love pairing these with smoked kielbasa or ham. YUM!

I hope you try this Pierogi Stuffed Shells recipe and love it as much as I do. Thanks for visiting today!

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More Recipes To Try

If you make this recipe, I’d love to know how it went! Please leave a star rating and comment below. Thanks!

6 pierogi stuffed shells on a white plate sprinkled with parsley

Pierogi Stuffed Shells

These easy Pierogi Stuffed Shells have all the delicious flavor of homemade pierogi but without the fuss of making dough!
Print Recipe Rate/Comment Pin Recipe
Prep Time: 23 minutes
Cook Time: 47 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 4 to 6 (6 or 4 stuffed shells each)
Calories: 522
Author: Michelle / Now Cook This!

Ingredients

  • cooking spray
  • pounds peeled potatoes, cut into 1½ to 2-inch pieces (about 2 pounds before peeling)
  • 24 jumbo pasta shells, about half of a 12-ounce box
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cups chopped onions, about ¼-inch pieces
  • 4 ounces extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (yellow or white)
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  • chopped fresh parsley, for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Spray a 9×13-inch baking dish with cooking spray; set aside.
  • Place the potatoes in a medium pot (I use a 3-quart pot) and cover them with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat, add salt to taste, and cook until the potatoes are fork-tender, about 10 to 12 minutes.
  • Once you get the potatoes on the stove to start cooking, put a large pot of salted water on to boil to cook the pasta shells and then cook the shells according to the package directions.
  • While the shells and potatoes are cooking, melt the butter in a medium skillet over medium heat (I use a 10-inch skillet). Add the onions and sauté, stirring occasionally, until they are just starting to turn a light golden brown, about 5 minutes; turn off the heat and set aside.
  • Drain the pasta shells once they are done cooking and then spread them out on a large baking sheet or tray and allow to cool.
  • When the potatoes are done cooking, drain them and return them to the hot pot; let them sit for a few minutes (off the heat) to allow the excess moisture to evaporate out.
  • Add the shredded cheese to the potatoes; mash until they are well-combined and smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then set aside to cool slightly for a few minutes.
    Make sure your potato and cheese mixture is well-seasoned with salt and pepper. It shouldn't be salty, just really flavorful…because if it's bland, it will be disappointing.
  • Evenly fill the pasta shells with the potato and cheese mixture; place the shells in the prepared baking dish, filling side up.
  • Spoon the onion and butter mixture evenly over the stuffed shells.
  • Bake, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes or just until heated through.
    Be careful not leave them in the oven too long, which could cause the pasta to start getting too hard or crunchy. You want them to stay soft.
  • Serve immediately.

Notes

  • Multi-tasking is key to having these ready to eat in just a little over an hour.
    • Get the potatoes on to boil first. Then put the pasta water on to boil and cook the pasta so they’re both going at the same time. While you’re waiting, sauté the onions.
  • For the correct potato-to-cheese ratio, you want 1½ pounds of potatoes after they are peeled, not before. About 2 pounds of unpeeled potatoes should get you there.
  • Estimated calories shown are based on 4 servings of 6 stuffed shells each. For 6 servings of 4 shells each, the estimated calories per serving would be 348.
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