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Spinach and Ricotta Manicotti

Updated June 30, 2016

Editor's Note: This is great dish to make for a game day party, picnic or large family event. Stuffed pasta is not hard to make and extremely economical for larger events you put on. In this version, which features a spinach stuffing, there is choice between two sauces to please your hungry crowd. Everyone loves pasta and this stuffed manicotti is sure to please most anyone who comes to your fabulous feast. Garlic bread is great to pair with this pasta dish. This cheesy casserole offers many flavors including, tomato and spinach and will fill you up and leave you smiling. 

Stuffed pasta is a great way to feed a crowd. This version has two sauces to make it extra-special.

Makes8 servings

Preparation Time25 min

Cooking Time35 min

Cooking MethodBaking

CostInexpensive

Easy

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

One Pot MealYes

OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Family Get-together

Recipe CourseMain Course

MealDinner, Lunch

Taste and TextureBubbly, Chewy, Garlicky

Type of DishCasserole, Gratin, Pasta, Stuffed Pasta

Ingredients

  • One 8oz (224g) box manicotti (14 each)
  • One 10oz (280g) box chopped frozen spinach, thawed
  • 1 qt (1 liter) container ricotta
  • ¾ cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • White Bechamel Sauce
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1/3 cup vegetable stock or water
  • 1/3 cup chopped basil

Instructions

Cook the manicotti shells in a large pot of lightly salted water according to the package instructions. Drain, rinse under cold running water, and drain again.

Meanwhile, drain the spinach well, pressing out any excess liquid. Mix the ricotta, ½ cup of the Parmesan, and the eggs in a bowl. Add the spinach and mix. Season with the nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Spoon the filling into the manicotti tubes. Arrange them in a lightly oiled 15 × 10in (38 × 25cm) baking dish.

For the sauce, heat the oil in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, until softened. Add the celery and garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and stock and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the sauce is slightly reduced. Stir in the basil.

Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Pour the white sauce over the manicotti, then spoon the tomato sauce on top. Sprinkle with the remaining ¼ cup of Parmesan. Bake for 30–35 minutes, or until the top is golden and bubbling.

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Made this tonight. Very very good. It does take some time because you make the sauces and need to stuff the shells. But well worth it. We can see using meat in the filling another time. Note, the recipe does not include the instructions for the white sauce. We used the white sauce for the lasagna by the same authors, and used 1/2 of what the recipe called for. They should correct this!

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