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.

Parmesan Chicken Manicotti

Please double the recipe if cooking for a larger group.

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

  1. In medium bowl, combine cooked shredded chicken, Ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, egg, oregano, salt and pepper together and stir until well mixed.
  2. Stuff each cooked Manicotti with about ¼ cupful of the chicken and cheese mixture carefully so that the Manicotti doesn’t tear.
  3. 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.
  4. 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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