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Prep 1 hr
Cook 50 mins
- 2 (8 ounce) packages manicotti
- 1⁄4 cup butter or 1⁄4 cup margarine
- 1⁄4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 1⁄2 cups milk
- 3⁄4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 lb bulk Italian sausage
- 4 cups diced cooked chicken or 4 cups turkey
- 2 (10 ounce) packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 2 (26 1/2 ounce) cans spaghetti sauce
- 1⁄4 cup minced fresh parsley
- Cook manicotti according to package directions; drain and set aside.
- Melt butter in a saucepan.
- Stir in the flour until smooth.
- Gradually add milk.
- Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.
- Stir in Parmesan cheese until melted; set aside.
- In a skillet, cook the sausage over medium heat until no longer pink; drain.
- Add chicken, spinach, eggs, mozzarella cheese and 3/4 cup white sauce.
- Stuff into manicotti shells.
- Spread 1/2 cup spaghetti sauce in each of two ungreased 13x9 inch baking dishes.
- Top with manicotti.
- Pour remaining spaghetti sauce over the top.
- Reheat the remaining white sauce, stirring constantly.
- Pour over spaghetti sauce.
- Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 45-50 minutes.
- Sprinkle with parsley.
I really liked the idea of the bechamel parmesan sauce on top instead of the usual layer of mozzarella cheese, which I believe is the more traditional Italian way to go. The filling is also different in that it was a chicken and sausage combo. I thought the filling needed a little more flavor. This recipe has no spices, no salt and pepper, no onions - I believe the parmesan cheese and spaghetti sauce and sausage are supposed to do that.