Salad Stuffed Shells Recipe -
Salad Stuffed Shells Recipe
  • READY IN 30 mins

Salad Stuffed Shells

Recipe by  

"A really different way to present pasta salad OR your favorite recipe for tuna and chicken salad! A really creative finger food that will impress your guests at picnics, BBQs, and showers! I served this on a bed of lettuce garnished with green and black olives."

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Original recipe makes 9 servings Change Servings
  • PREP

    20 mins
  • COOK

    10 mins

    30 mins


  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook pasta shells in the boiling water, stirring occasionally until cooked through but firm to the bite, about 8 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water until chilled.
  2. Combine salami, romaine lettuce, roma tomatoes, cucumber, and red onion in a large bowl; pour balsamic vinaigrette dressing over salad and toss to coat. Stuff pasta shells with lettuce mixture and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
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  • Cook's Notes:
  • I do not recommend making this the day before as the lettuce will wilt. But you can chop everything up the night before, keeping the lettuce separate. I also found that the shells were easier to stuff when they were cold.

Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Jan 25, 2015

Five stars for this being a FANTASTIC presentation idea!!! But for the actual stuffing recipe..... blah. Made it but didn't care for it, so made my own pasta salad my way. Chunks, (not slices) of salami, ham & pepperoni, chunks of swiss & a yellow cheddar cheese, diced roma tomatoes (pat dry with paper towels), diced English cucumbers (keep skin on), black olives, and diced red onion. Marinate it all in Zesty Italian dressing overnight. Stuff shells before serving. As for the romaine lettuce; garnish the platter with it ..... that way guests can grab a piece themselves IF they want it! Sliced pepperoncini's are a nice addition too for some zing, using some of the juice added to marinade! Ultimately... I would suggest using "YOUR" favorite salad recipe, whether it be egg salad, ham salad, tangy broccoli cheese salad, chicken salad, tuna salad, crab or seafood salad, antipasto, etc. Just remember to add some "crunchies" in the stuffing, such as the cukes and onion; or try celery, diced carrots, water chestnuts, radishes or red and/or green peppers, broccoli and/or cauliflower. Kidney beans or black beans sound like a great addition, too! Next time for a pot luck I am doing a combination of a few different varieties for guests to choose from! :) Thank You Micki, you are so creative!!! Tip: Cook shells al dente and rinse in cold water, then leave out to fully dry, before stuffing. Makes it a easy & clean job!!!

Most Helpful Critical Review
Jun 09, 2014

Very original way to serve pasta salad. Family thought it was a bit bland.


22 Ratings

Jan 01, 2013

This rating is based mainly on the idea and presentation. Made this last night for appetizers served on deviled egg trays. I had a total of 44 large shells. The fillings I used were chicken salad, tuna salad, ham salad and a variation of the salad ingredients listed. This turned out beautiful! Was enjoyed by everyone and there were no leftovers. A keeper for sure. Thanks, Micki, for sharing a delicious, new idea!! Will be using this many times in the future.

May 21, 2012

To reduce the fat even more, I use turkey pepperoni, and substitute fresh baby spinach leaves rather than the romaine. I'll also chopped up some water chestnuts to add a little crunch. Red wine vinegar with just a little olive oil also reduced the sodium that store-bought vinaigrettes might have :)

Dec 16, 2012

Great idea! A fun and delicious way to serve salad. Serve in a deviled egg tray for a nice presentation.

Dec 18, 2012

This is a great appetizer for the office parties when everyone is on a diet. I use reduced calorie ranch and spinach chopped with the romaine. You can use almost any colorful veggie, ie, green and red peppers, carrots, small pieces of brocolli and even red cabbage. This always gets oooohhh and ahhhs.

Dec 18, 2012

Okay, a qualifier: I did not actually try the salad recipe, but the idea of using large shells as the vehicle for any salad is ingenious! I can't believe I have never seen this before. I have a tuna/pasta salad recipe that I plan on serving using this idea rather than mixing the pasta with the salad. The only change I would make is to boil the pasta in highly salted water {salty like the sea}.

Aug 01, 2013

I will give this recipe for stars because it's a great idea, but the salad recipe here is just so-so. I would like to experiment with other filling options; the sky's the limit for the potential here! Def a fun party idea to serve appetizers!! Thanks.


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  • Calories
  • 312 kcal
  • 16%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 30.7 g
  • 10%
  • Cholesterol
  • 32 mg
  • 11%
  • Fat
  • 14.7 g
  • 23%
  • Fiber
  • 2.1 g
  • 9%
  • Protein
  • 14.3 g
  • 29%
  • Sodium
  • 819 mg
  • 33%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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