Sunday, September 27, 2009


The weather suddenly turned pretty cold for the past week or so, inspiring me to make lots of comfort food. First up, my husband's favorite pasta dish - manicotti!

Saute spinach and onion

Boil manicotti noodles with a bit of salt for 7-8 min. We don't want to make them ready-to-eat soft because they are going to bake in the oven for a bit and that will complete the pasta's cooking.

Combine filling: ricotta, cottage cheese, motzarella, egg, garlic, salt & pepper, ground red pepper and italian seasoning.

Stir spinach and onions into the cheese mixture.

Now here's a great way to help you get the filling into the manicotti shells without making a huge mess. Scoop the cheese mixture into a gallon-sized ziploc bag. Seal the bag while trying to get out as much air as possible.

Twist the top of the bag so all the cheese mixture gets forced down into one corner. When you have boiled and drained your noodles, snip a small bit of the ziploc bag's corner. Line up the snipped corner with each manicotti noodled and squeeze the bag from the top down, like you would with a pastry bag.

Line the stuffed manicotti in a baking dish. See how nice using the ziploc bag is? It doesn't break the shells or make a gigantic mess.

Spread 1 jar of your favorite pasta sauce over the noodles.

Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.

Bake at 350 for 35 minutes. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving.

1 box manicotti noodles
1 tsp. salt
----> Place noodles in a large pot of boiling water. Add salt. Periodically stir the noodles. Boil for
7-8 minutes. Drain.

8 oz. frozen spinach
1/2 medium onion
----> Saute in a tbsp. olive oil for a few minutes, until spinach has wilted and the onion looses it's crispness.

12 oz. cottage cheese
12 oz. ricotta
1 c. mozzarella cheese, grated
1 egg, beaten
1 tbsp. minced garlic
2 tbsp. italian seasoning blend
dash of ground red pepper
pinch of black pepper
pinch of salt

jar of pasta sauce
parmesan cheese, grated

----> Stir together filling. Add spinach and onions. Fill boiled and drained manicotti noodles. Line the manicotti in a glass baking dish. Spread pasta sauce over the top of the manicotti. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes.


  1. This looks really good. Funny thing is, they were making this on Guiliana and Bill (Yes, I watch that show.) :-) and ever since then I've been wanting to make this.

  2. I have some fresh spinach to use up...any idea how to tweak the recipe to make fresh instead of frozen work? Thanks!

  3. Hi Danielle!

    If using fresh spinach, just saute it in a bit of olive oil until it wilts down. Frozen spinach comes pre-wilted so that's really the only difference.

    Hope that helps!

  4. Great, thanks! I've been wanting to make this for the past couple years(sad), but haven't found a convincing recipe. I think I'll try it this week!
    Be expecting some links back to the recipes! ;)


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