Manicotti Recipe

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This cheesy stuffed Manicotti Recipe is the ultimate comfort food. Baked to perfection with a savory three cheese filling that pairs wonderfully with your favorite marinara sauce.

Manicotti recipe

The Best Baked Manicotti Recipe

Baked pastas are always a hit for dinner with our family. You can make so many different kinds so it never feels like you’re eating the same meal over and over again. Stuffed pastas are definitely a family favorite and this manicotti recipe is at the top of the list. The cheese mixture contains ricotta, mozzarella, AND parmesan so you know it’s both cheesy and bursting with flavor. This is something we make often for Sunday dinner. It makes the house smell amazing! Serve it with Olive Garden Breadsticks and Wedge Salad for a truly balanced meal that is both filling and delicious.  

spatula serving Manicotti Recipe

Why You’ll Love This Manicotti Recipe

  • Crowd pleaser: Everyone who has ever eaten this baked manicotti has asked for the recipe. It’s so good!
  • Fantastic leftovers: The manicotti reheats so well — even in the microwave.
  • Easy dinner idea: Unsure of what to make for dinner? Gooey cheesy pasta is sure to please everyone at your table.
fork cutting Manicotti

What You’ll Need

These are all of the ingredients needed to make this rich and flavorful manicotti recipe.

  • Manicotti shells: These are easy to find in the pasta aisle at your local grocery store. I typically find them right next to the large shells.
  • Cheeses: For this recipe, I use ricotta, mozzarella, and parmesan for the filling. Then, I top the pasta bake with additional mozzarella and parmesan. It’s rich and tasty!
  • Marinara sauce: Use your favorite variety and brand of marinara sauce for a nice shortcut. If you prefer, you can also make homemade marinara.
  • Eggs: Adding eggs to the manicotti filling keeps it from becoming dry and it also acts as a binding agent so it stays together and doesn’t ooze out of the pasta as it cooks.
  • Garlic: Freshly minced garlic adds amazing flavor to the cheese filling.
  • Seasonings: I add dried parsley, basil, salt, and pepper to the cheeses for Italian flair.
  • Basil leaves: The fresh basil garnish adds texture, flavor, and color! It’s optional but I like to add it whenever I make this manicotti recipe.
ingredients needed to make Manicotti Recipe

How to Make Stuffed Manicotti

The baking time is the longest part of this manicotti recipe. I promise that this dish is worth the wait!

  • Cook the manicotti shells. Using the package directions, boil the manicotti pasta shells, drain, and rinse with cold water. Set them aside.
  • Preheat the oven. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Make the cheese mixture. Combine ricotta, 1 ½ cup mozzarella, 1 cup parmesan, eggs, garlic, and seasonings. Mix until smooth.
  • Spread marinara. Pour enough marinara to cover the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish and spread it evenly.
  • Stuff the manicotti shells. Spoon some of the cheese mixture into each manicotti shell and place them in the baking dish.
  • Add the remaining sauce. Cover the stuffed manicotti with the remaining sauce.
  • Cover and bake. Cover with foil and bake for 40-45 minutes or until bubbly.
  • Uncover and add cheese. Remove the foil and sprinkle with the remaining parmesan and mozzarella.
  • Bake to melt the cheese. Cook for an additional 5-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and golden.
  • Let it rest. Allow the manicotti to rest for a few minutes before serving.
  • Garnish and serve. Top with sliced basil leaves and enjoy!

Tips and Variations

  • Make it ahead. Assemble the manicotti and cover the baking dish with aluminum foil. Store in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before baking.
  • Add meat. Cook ground beef or sausage and add it to the marinara spaghetti sauce before assembling the manicotti. It adds great texture!
  • Using a piping bag. I highly recommend a piping bag to fill the manicotti shells. Buy one from the grocery store or make your own out of a resealable bag by snipping a corner after putting the cheese mixture in it.
  • Cook the pasta al dente. Slightly under-cook the manicotti shells when you bowl them so after they’re baked, they will be the perfect doneness and not too soft.

baked Manicotti Recipe in white baking dish

Storage Directions

  • Refrigerate: Place leftover manicotti into an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Reheat: individual portions may be heated in the microwave. Cover with a damp paper towel to prevent the pasta from drying out.
  • Freeze: Assemble the baked manicotti but don’t cook it. Cover tightly and store in the freezer for up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight or bake straight from frozen and add 30 minutes to the baking time.
fork with cheesy Manicotti

More Baked Pasta Recipes

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Manicotti Recipe

This cheesy stuffed Manicotti Recipe is the ultimate comfort food. Baked to perfection with a savory cheese filling that pairs wonderfully with your favorite marinara sauce.
Servings: 6 Servings
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 1 hour 5 minutes


  • 10 each manicotti shells
  • 2 cups ricotta cheese
  • 1 ¼ cups shredded parmesan cheese ¼ cup separated
  • 2 ½ cups shredded mozzarella cheese 1 ½ cups separated
  • 1 24 oz jar of marinara sauce
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh basil leaves thinly sliced (for garnish)


  • Cook the manicotti shells according to the package instructions. Once cooked, rinse them under cold water, drain, and set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). In a large mixing bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, 1 cup shredded parmesan cheese, 1 ½ cups shredded mozzarella cheese, eggs, minced garlic, dried parsley, dried basil, salt, and pepper. Mix until well combined.
  • Spread a thin layer of marinara sauce on the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish.
  • Carefully spoon the cheese mixture into the cooked manicotti shells, ensuring they are evenly filled. Place the filled shells in the prepared baking dish. Alternatively, you can add the cheese mixture into a piping bag and pipe it into the manicotti shells.
  • Once all the shells are filled and arranged in the dish, pour the remaining marinara sauce over the top, covering the shells completely.
  • Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 40-45 minutes, or until the filling is hot and bubbly.
  • Remove the foil and sprinkle remaining 1 cup of shredded mozzarella and ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese on top, if desired. Return the dish to the oven for an additional 5-10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and lightly golden.
  • Once done, remove from the oven and let it rest for a few minutes. Garnish with thinly sliced fresh basil before serving. Enjoy!

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Calories: 395kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 148mg | Sodium: 718mg | Potassium: 175mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 928IU | Vitamin C: 0.3mg | Calcium: 668mg | Iron: 1mg


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