Canelloni Recipe Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni

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Close up photo of 2 pieces of Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni with tomato pasta sauce on a plate

Canelloni Recipe Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni

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Canelloni Recipe Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni.

Canelloni Recipe Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni

Think about coming dwelling to this Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni…… a juicy spinach and ricotta filling inside cannelloni pasta tubes, topped with a easy home made tomato basil sauce and melted cheese.

Together with this gradual cooked Beef Lasagna and Vegetable Lasagna, Cannelloni is certainly one of my signature cosy-meals recipes!

Close up photo of 2 pieces of Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni with tomato pasta sauce on a plate

That is certainly one of my go-to freezer meals I make to offer to mates, and a fantastic one to make for dinners to cater for each carnivores and vegetarians.

I make it usually all through many of the yr, besides maybe on the very peak of summer season. Sure, I really like cannelloni that a lot!

Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni in a baking dish, fresh out of the oven

What’s cannelloni??

Cannelloni is a tube formed dry pasta about 7 cm / three″ lengthy and 2cm / 2/three″ vast. It’s filled with filling, coated in a sauce and cheese then baked. It doesn’t should be cooked earlier than filling, it softens when baked within the oven.

The commonest selection is a spinach and ricotta filling topped with a tomato sauce which is the model I’m sharing as we speak.

What’s the distinction between cannelloni and manicotti?

Manicotti can also be a dry paste tube. It’s the Italian-American model of cannelloni.  The distinction is that manicotti is bigger with ridges, whereas cannelloni is easy.

The spinach and ricotta filling on this recipe fills 18 – 22 cannelloni tubes, or 10 – 12 manicotti tubes.

Imagine coming home to this Spinach Ricotta Cannelloni....

There are two methods to make cannelloni:

  • stuffing dry pasta tubes
  • rolling the filling up in recent lasagna sheets

I like utilizing the tubes – partly as a result of they’re more economical. And in addition as a result of I like the dimensions – a greater filling to pasta/sauce/cheese ratio. Lasagna sheets are thicker and also you want a double layer the place the sheets overlap to seal within the filling and inevitably, the cannellonis find yourself greater.

Best solution to fill cannelloni tubes

And I do know what a lot of you’re considering – stuffing the tubes is a ache. 

After a few years of utilizing knives / skinny spoons / mixture of these + the tip of wood spoons and I lastly accepted the inevitable truth:

The quickest option to fill the tubes is with a piping bag.
7 seconds per tube x 20 tubes = 2.three minutes.

Quick way to fill cannelloni tubes and manicotti

The Spinach and Ricotta Filling

The Spinach and Ricotta Filling is creamy, has the proper spinach to ricotta ratio, and made additional tasty with the addition of parmesan and cheese. It’s so good, I can eat spoonfuls of it straight out of the bowl!

Right here’s what’s in it:

  • Spinach – use frozen for comfort (thaw, take away extra water earlier than utilizing), or contemporary for those who’ve acquired an abundance of it;
  • Ricotta – make sure you use a meals high quality full fats, creamy one. (Tip: keep away from Good Italiano tub, it’s fairly powdery and unsightly)
  • Shredded cheese – a flavoured one is finest, like cheddar, tasty. Save the mozzarella for the topping.
  • Parmesan – don’t skip this! It provides additional savouriness and seasoning to the filling. Simply retailer purchased finely shredded or grated is okay, or grate your personal.
  • Garlic – as a result of it makes every part higher
  • Egg – for binding (might be skipped)
  • Nutmeg – optionally available, but it surely’s a stunning contact. I exploit it in virtually all my spinach ricotta fillings.
  • Salt and pepper

That is my customary recipe that’s nearly an identical (if not an identical) to what I exploit for all issues spinach and ricotta, from this Spinach and Ricotta Pasta Bake, to Puff Pasty PuffsRotolo (it’s like upright cannelloni – and it’s superb!), to Spinach Ricotta Rolls.

Are you able to freeze spinach and ricotta filling?

YES, it’s completely high-quality to freeze. If utilizing to stuff one thing, then thaw, give it combine then use per recipe. If it’s already ready, like Cannelloni, it will probably even be cooked from frozen.

I freeze cannelloni extra usually than cooking it recent!

What goes in Spinach and Ricotta Filling

Sauce for Cannelloni

Cannelloni needs to be smothered generously with sauce to make sure there’s sufficient liquid for the dry pasta tubes to soak up and cook dinner within the oven. The most typical sauce is a tomato pasta sauce which is what I take advantage of.

There are recipes “on the market” that say to simply use plain canned tomatoes or tomato passata for the topping (or bottled pasta sauce).

I actually, REALLY assume that in case you’re making the hassle to creating cannelloni, it’s a no brainer to make a tiny additional effort to make a easy pasta sauce.

“Easy” being the operative phrase right here. It’s simply garlic + onion + crushed tomato + water, simmer for a bit, then stir by recent basil or dried herbs on the finish.

Tomato pasta sauce for cannelloni

Choice: Load up on additional spinach

You may double the spinach on this, in order for you. It could actually take it, plus you’ll expend a complete field of cannelloni tubes. They arrive in bins of 30 right here in Australia, and it’s type of annoying to finish up with 10 or so floating round within the pantry, which then motivates me to make one other batch simply to make use of them up, then I find yourself with extra tubes leftover so I’ve to make one other batch.

Serve Cannelloni with a easy backyard salad tossed with Italian Dressing. For a blow-out Italian feast, add a aspect of Garlic Bread, or a fast Cheesy Garlic Bread! – Nagi x

Imagine coming home to this Spinach Ricotta Cannelloni....

Spinach Ricotta Cannelloni

Writer: Nagi
Prep: 25 minutes
Cook dinner: 35 minutes
Whole: 1 hr
American-Italian, Western
5 from fifty one votes
Recipe VIDEO above. Juicy, completely seasoned spinach and ricotta filling inside cannelloni pasta tubes, topped with a easy, tasty tomato sauce and melted cheese. Nice for freezing!


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove , finely chopped
  • 1 small onion , finely chopped
  • 800 g / 28 oz crushed tomato
  • 1 cup water (swirl in tomato can to scrub out)
  • three/four tsp salt + pepper to style
  • Handful basil leaves , torn, or 1 tsp dried herbs (e.g. Italian combine, oregano, thyme, basil)


  • 250 g / eight oz frozen chopped spinach , thawed (Be aware 1)
  • 500 g / 1 lb ricotta , full fats please (Notice 2)
  • 1/three cup grated parmesan
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (Mozzarella, Colby, Cheddar, Tasty, Gruyere, Swiss)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 massive garlic clove , minced
  • Grated recent nutmeg (only a sprinkling) or 1/eight tsp nutmeg powder (optionally available)
  • half of tsp salt and pepper , every


  • 18 – 22 dried cannelloni tubes (Word three)
  • 1 – 1 1/2 cups shredded Mozzarella
  • Extra basil , for garnish (elective)



  • Warmth oil in a big skillet over medium excessive warmth. Add garlic and onion, cook dinner for two – three minutes till translucent. Add tomato, water, salt and pepper.
  • Stir, cut back warmth to medium, simmer for five minutes. Optionally available: add half of cup water and mix sauce till clean (I do that for friends!).
  • Stir by way of basil or dried herbs. Put aside.


  • Place spinach in a colander and press out many of the liquid (needn’t completely squeeze dry).
  • Place Spinach in bowl with remaining Filling components. Combine, style, modify salt and pepper to style (totally different cheeses have totally different saltiness).

Assemble & Bake:

  • Preheat oven to 180C/350F.
  • Select a baking pan which can comfortably match about 20 cannelloni – mine is 21 x 26 cm / eight.5 x 10.5″.
  • Unfold a little bit of Sauce on the bottom.
  • Switch Filling to a piping bag with a big nozzle (that matches within the tubes), or use a powerful ziplock bag. Or do that step utilizing a knife (it is a bit tedious although!).
  • Pipe the filling into the tubes. Place in baking dish.
  • Pour over remaining Sauce, masking all of the tubes. Cowl with foil, then bake for 25 minutes.
  • Take away foil, scatter over cheese. Return to oven for 10 minutes till cheese is melted.
  • Serve, garnished with further basil if desired.

Recipe Notes:

1. Spinach – I take advantage of frozen spinach for the comfort and likewise as a result of I am a sucker for the entire “snap frozen” factor. To make use of recent, use about 500g/1 lb sliced spinach leaves or child spinach leaves, saute with a bit oil to wilt down and take away extra liquid. Cool then proceed with recipe.
2. Ricotta – Low fats ricotta is tougher and drier, so it is tougher to pipe into the tubes plus as soon as baked, is just not as juicy and moist. Keep away from Good Italian model in tubs. My favorite is Paesanella.
three. Cannelloni – The cannelloni tubes I exploit are the dried ones offered in containers at supermarkets and delis. They’re about eleven cm / four” lengthy and a couple of.5cm / 1″ vast. They don’t have to be boiled earlier than cooking within the oven.
This recipe may also be used for manicotti that are bigger tubes with ridges – use 10 to 12.
It’s also possible to make this utilizing recent lasagna sheets. Simply roll Filling up inside, place within the baking pan seam facet down. I favor utilizing dried tubes – refer in publish for the rationale why.
four. For FREEZING or refrigerating raw: Add additional three/four cup water* into Sauce, prepare dinner Sauce per recipe then mix* till easy. Place stuffed, raw cannelloni in single or a number of dishes, cowl with sauce (will seem like LOTS!) then cheese. Cowl, cool then freeze / refrigerate.
On the day of, thaw then bake per recipe (coated then uncovered). OR bake from frozen, bake lined 35 minutes then uncovered 10 minutes.
* The rationale for further water and mixing: When raw cannelloni is assembled, the dry pasta will take in a number of the liquid because it freezes. For those who do not add further water, the sauce dries up as soon as baked. Mixing additionally helps right here, plus it brings the sauce collectively higher so it would not cut up when thawed.
COOKED leftovers – refrigerate as much as three days or freeze, thaw, then reheat coated in microwave for greatest outcomes.
5. Vitamin per serving, assuming 5 servings.

Vitamin Info:

Serving: 407gEnergy: 531kcal (27%)

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Close up photo of 2 pieces of Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni with tomato pasta sauce on a plateSpinach and Ricotta Cannelloni in a baking dish, fresh out of the ovenImagine coming home to this Spinach Ricotta Cannelloni.... www.recipetineats.comQuick way to fill cannelloni tubes and manicotti What goes in Spinach and Ricotta FillingTomato pasta sauce for cannelloniImagine coming home to this Spinach Ricotta Cannelloni....