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The summer has come and gone. While I am still milking grilling outdoors as much as I can, I am beginning to meal plan for the upcoming school year now more than ever.
During the week, we usually make easier meals or even serve leftovers. But on the weekend, we tend to enjoy putting together a bit more complex meals that are savory, hearty and delicious. Being of Italian descent, I am partial to pasta and pasta-like meals. One of my favorites growing up was manicotti. It still is even until this day.
So, with cooler weather finding us here soon, I was craving a yummy pasta dish like manicotti.
Manicotti is a dish that is a bit longer to make. It also can be a heavier meal and higher calorie-wise. The past few weeks, we have been trying to eat healthier here. So, I was also trying to keep that in mind. So, for this meal, we added frozen (drained) spinach to the classic recipe.
Again, it is a bit more complicated to make. So, perfect for a cool fall Sunday to prepare while bumming around the house. It can also be used for leftovers during the week, as well.
I start with manicotti shells and cook them according to the package instructions. Then, I make my manicotti filling with all sorts of scrumptious ingredients. Once the manicotti is stuffed, then they bake for 30-40 minutes.
So, again, a bit of a lengthy process. But so worth it!
Are you ready to try my Spinach & Ricotta Cheese Manicotti?
Then, scroll below to get the full recipe tutorial now.
Spinach and Ricotta Cheese Manicotti Recipe
- Box of Manicotti shells
- 15 oz. Ricotta cheese
- 2 Jars of Spaghetti sauce
- 1 Package frozen chopped spinach (drained)
- 1 c. Chopped onion
- 1 Egg
- 2 tbsp. Parsley flakes
- 1 tbsp. Oregano
- 1 tsp. Garlic powder
- 1 ½ c. Mozzarella cheese
- Pinch of nutmeg
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Place chopped onions in a skillet and saute them over medium heat until browned and translucent.
- Start boiling water for the manicotti shells. When the water comes to a full boil, add the manicotti, and cook until al dente.
- Drain the noodles and rinse with cold water immediately to cool them down, and to keep them from sticking.
- While the noodles are cooking, add 15 oz. of ricotta cheese to a bowl with the frozen chopped spinach that has been drained.
- Crack 1 whole egg into the bowl.
- Add 2 tablespoons of parsley flakes to the mixture.
- Pour in 1 tablespoon of oregano to the bowl.
- Sprinkle in 1 teaspoon of garlic powder to the cheese mixture.
- Add a pinch of nutmeg to the bowl, and mix thoroughly.
- Toss in the cooked onions once they have cooled a bit.
- Combine the mixture in the bowl with 1 ½ cups of mozzarella cheese.
- Pour a jar of spaghetti sauce into the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish.
- When the noodles have cooked and cooled, stuff them with the cheese mixture. Overfill just a bit, but not enough to break the manicotti noodles open.
- Place the filled manicotti noodles into the bottom of the 9x13 baking dish, on top of the spaghetti sauce.
- Pour another jar of spaghetti sauce over the top of the filled noodles in the baking dish.
- Bake the manicotti for 30-40 minutes, or until the filling is just starting to turn brown, and the sauce is bubbling.
- Top with more shredded mozzarella cheese and garnish with fresh herbs.
Do you like manicotti?
Now, share with me in the comments.