Spinach Manicotti in Creamy Tomato Sauce

Our fuss-free method for stuffing pasta shells turns this classic Italian dish into a weeknight option.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4
Spinach Manicotti in Creamy Tomato Sauce

Source: Everyday Food, December 2010

Ingredients

  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 8 manicotti shells (from an 8-ounce package)
  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 container (15 ounces) part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmesan (2 ounces)
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 package (10 ounces) frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 2 cups prepared marinara sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta shells according to package instructions. Drain well and arrange in a single layer on an oiled rimmed baking sheet. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine ricotta, 1/2 cup Parmesan, and lemon zest. Stir in spinach and season filling to taste with salt and pepper.

  2. Transfer filling to a large zip-top plastic bag. Twist and squeeze bag so filling is in one corner. With scissors, snip a 3/4-inch opening in corner. Pipe filling into both ends of each pasta shell. Arrange stuffed shells in an 8-inch square glass baking dish.

  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together marinara sauce, oregano, and cream. Pour sauce evenly over stuffed shells and top with 1/2 cup Parmesan. Bake until sauce in center of dish is bubbling and Parmesan is browned in spots, about 30 minutes. Let sit 5 minutes before serving.

Cook's Notes

Swap it: Use 1/2 pound peeled, deveined shrimp, finely chopped, instead of the spinach.

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