Super Easy Working Mom's Manicotti

Total Time
1hr 10mins
Prep 20 mins
Cook 50 mins

A twist on the super easy recipe my closest girlfriend Jules35 and I use from the back of the AMERICAN BEAUTY PASTA (THE ONLY ONE THAT SHOWS A RECIPE THAT YOU DON'T HAVE TO BOIL THE PASTA FIRST!! Sometimes we make it with sausage and mushrooms, sometimes veggie style-either way is great! Their make ahead tip is below as well! We have made this with a single can of sauce (large) but if you want it really saucy, you may want to adjust the recipe later to suit your tastes. ;) I topped with a 4 cheese blend that had cheddar in it for the picture. Up to you!!

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 8 ounces manicotti, uncooked about 14 pieces
  • 26 ounces spaghetti sauce, approx. 3 cups
  • 1 cup water
  • 15 ounces ricotta cheese, approx. 2 cups
  • 8 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded approx. 2 cups
  • 14 cup parmesan cheese, grated (we prefer the three cheese blend of asiagio,parm and romano)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, chopped fresh
  • 12 teaspoon salt
  • 14 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 lb Italian sausage (can sub assorted veggies for sausage if desired such as peppers, zucchini, aubergine, etc)
  • 1 (7 ounce) can mushrooms, sliced and drained
  • garlic, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon italian seasoning
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste


  1. Heat oven to 400°F.
  2. Cook thoroughly sausage and mushrooms (or saute assorted veggies if making veggie version) with garlic,italian seasoning and salt and pepper to taste.
  3. In saucepan, combine spaghetti sauce and water; heat to boiling, stirring frequently.
  4. Reduce heat; keep warm.
  5. In bowl, stir together cheeses, parsley, egg, salt and pepper; spoon into uncooked pasta tubes.
  6. Pour 1 cup sauce on bottom of 13x9x2-inch glass baking dish; arrange filled pasta in single layer over sauce.
  7. Pour remaining sauce over pasta; sprinkle with cheese if desired and cover with foil.
  8. Bake 40 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Remove foil; bake 5 minutes longer.
  9. Serve -pasta and filling will be HOT!
  10. Enjoy!
  11. To make ahead and freeze:.
  12. MAKE AHEAD DIRECTIONS: Prepare as directed above; cool 30 minutes.
  13. Cover tightly with plastic wrap; then foil.
  14. Freeze up to 2 months.
  15. Thaw in refrigerator overnight (casserole is too dry if heated from frozen state)May want to add a small amount of additional moisture- water or sauce.
  16. Bake at 350°F 60 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
Most Helpful

Super Easy and Everyone Loved It!!! I scaled the recipe to 3 servings (in half). I used 8 shells and 1 jar of Classico Traditional Basil sauce with 1/2 c of water. I totally spaced the egg so I did not use the egg and it was fine... The filling stayed inside and the cheese melted perfectly. I added the sausage/mushroom mixture to the spaghetti sauce, hope that was right. Thanks Mommy Diva!

NcMysteryShopper March 03, 2008

Thank you for such an easy recipe to throw together and it tasted wonderful! I used small curd cottage cheese instead of ricotta-more economical. I filled a ziplock baggie with room temperature cheese mixture, snipped a corner off and piped in the cheese. I added a bit more water than required because my sauce was really thick. I served this with three cheese garlic bread and a ceasar salad. When I told my mom about this recipe, she had never heard of making it without boiling the manicotti first and asked me for the recipe because she loves manicotti but hates the labor intensiveness about more thanks to this recipe! This recipe is a keeper and I'll never be intimidated by manicotti again! Thank you!

Ashleigh12 January 19, 2010

This gets out automatic 5 Star rating. DD ate this up and gave me a thumbs up for it. She's 3 so this is a BIG deal. DH and I loved it also. I made just as stated, except that I so called scaled it to 4 servings. I used about 8 shells and 1 jar of sauce with about 1/2 c of water. Worked out perfect.

MsSally October 15, 2007