I went to bed at 4:30 in the morning… I just could not sleep! My husband traveled alone yesterday and got home at around 2 and after he came home, we just started talking and went to bed pretty late. He got into a little accident yesterday going to a wedding and man, we were just so upset about it. But now, I feel more at peace and believe that every cloud has silver lining. We have been under a lot of stress lately, with my husband starting MBA this month and other things. They are mostly good things.. but every good things comes with a price or a sacrifice, I guess. But I know everything will be alright.
One of things that sure puts me in a better mood is yummy food. And this one is definitely yummy. I love manicotti and I usually make them with spinach and ricotta cheese. But this time, I did something different… one because I didn’t have any frozen spinach… so I thought, how should I use manicotti without any frozen spinach. And a thought came to me “let’s stuff them with some shredded chicken, Parmesane cheese and ricotta together!
And I’m so glad I decided to experiment a little! Because it turned out so well and delicious! I regretted making just 7. I should have made 14 of them. I was sad when all of them were gone and I still wanted some more!
Cook manicotti shells according to package instructions. Don’t cook too long or it will be difficult to stuff them.
This recipe is sufficient for 7 manicotti shells – double the recipe if you’re planning to make more. I used one cup shredded cooked chicken breast. I added 1 cup ricotta (part skim) cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon oregano, and salt and freshly ground black pepper in a bowl with the chicken.
Mix it all together until well mixed.
Stuff each manicotti with about 1/4 cupful of the mixture carefully so that the manicotti doesn’t tear.
To make the sauce; you will need a can of Italian style crushed tomatoes. Italian style crushed tomatoes already have Italian seasonings in them. Heat the sauce over low heat. Add 2 tablespoons grated Parmesane cheese and 1 tablespoon chopped basil leaves to the sauce and stir well. Cook until it starts to bubble. Reduce heat to simmer and cook until heated through.
Transfer stuffed manicotti into a baking pan that is sprayed with cooking spray. Add about 1 cup crushed tomatoes sauce (or more if desired) on top of the stuffed manicotti. Sprinkle about 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese on top.
Top with 6-8 basil leaves.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 35 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
- 7 pieces Manicotti, cooked according to instructions
- 1 cup part skim Ricotta cheese
- ½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1 cup shredded cooked chicken
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- salt and black pepper
- 1 can Italian style crushed tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil leaves
- ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
- 6-8 basil leaves
- In medium bowl, combine cooked shredded chicken, Ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, egg, oregano, salt and pepper together and stir until well mixed.
- Stuff each cooked Manicotti with about ¼ cupful of the chicken and cheese mixture carefully so that the Manicotti doesn’t tear.
- Add the crushed tomatoes in saucepan over low heat. Add 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan and 1 tablespoon chopped basil leaves and stir frequently, until it starts to bubble. Simmer until heated through.
- Spray baking dish with cooking spray and place the stuffed Manicotti in it. Pour about 1 cup (or more) prepared sauce over the Manicotti. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and place basil leaves.
- Bake at 350 degrees F for 35 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
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