Dump And Bake Manicotti Recipe

Dump And Bake Manicotti Recipe

Manicotti is the ultimate comfort food that brings back childhood memories. Who doesn’t love a baked pasta dish loaded with ooey-gooey cheese and savory meat sauce? This dump and bake manicotti recipe from styleitwithtrix makes preparing this Italian favorite easier than ever. Simply mix together your ingredients, stuff the manicotti shells and pop it in the oven for a hearty, crowd-pleasing meal.

This dump and bake manicotti recipe couldn’t be simpler to pull together for a busy weeknight dinner. With just 10 ingredients that you likely have on hand, dinner comes together in under an hour from start to finish. We love how the stuffed manicotti shells are packed with flavors like tomato sauce, cooked ground beef, mozzarella and parmesan cheese. Feel free to customize the filling to suit your tastes too. Bake until bubbly hot for a comforting dish the whole family will enjoy.

Why You’ll Love This Dump and Bake Manicotti

There are so many reasons this dump and bake manicotti will be your new favorite meal! Here are just a few things we love about it:

  • Easy “dump and bake” preparation means minimal work for you
  • Packed with bold Italian flavors
  • Loaded with stretchy melted mozzarella cheese in every bite
  • Customizable filling to suit your tastes
  • Feeds a crowd for parties and potlucks

With a meaty and cheesy filling wrapped up in tender manicotti shells, this bake hits all the right notes of comfort food.

How to Make Dump and Bake Manicotti

Making this recipe begins with cooking the ground beef mixture and letting the manicotti shells soften in hot water before assembling everything in a baking dish. Then it’s just a matter of popping it in the oven until hot and bubbling with melted cheese.

Ingredients

  • 1 box manicotti shells
  • Mozzarella sticks
  • 2 jars tomato sauce
  • 1 lb cooked ground beef
  • Shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Salt and pepper
  • Italian seasoning
  • Water
  • Mozzarella and parmesan cheese

Kitchen Tools

  • Large pot for cooking pasta
  • Mixing bowls
  • 13×9” baking dish

Instructions

  1. Cook ground beef over medium heat until browned and crumbled. Drain excess fat.
  2. In a large bowl mix together cooked ground beef, tomato sauce, shredded mozzarella cheese, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning.
  3. Cook manicotti according to package directions until al dente. Drain and set aside.
  4. Grease a 13×9” baking dish with nonstick spray. Lay manicotti shells in the bottom of the dish.
  5. Stuff each shell carefully with a whole mozzarella stick and top with several spoonfuls of meat sauce mixture.
  6. Pour 1 cup water evenly over stuffed shells.
  7. Cover tightly with foil and bake at 350°F for 30 minutes.
  8. Remove foil, top with additional mozzarella and parmesan cheese and bake uncovered for 10 more minutes.
  9. Let rest 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

Tips

  • For best results, do not overcook the manicotti shells when boiling or they may split while baking.
  • The stuffed shells can be assembled early in the day and refrigerated until ready to bake.
  • Add diced veggies like bell pepper, onion or mushrooms to the meat sauce mixture.
  • For spicy manicotti, use spicy ground sausage instead of regular ground beef.

Manicotti Variations

If you want to change up the flavors, try one of these tasty variations:

  • Chicken Manicotti: Substitute shredded chicken or diced chicken tenders for the ground beef.
  • Spinach Manicotti: Add a package of thawed, drained frozen spinach to the filling.
  • Vegetarian Manicotti: Skip the meat completely and use mushrooms, onions, peppers and fresh spinach.
  • Seafood Manicotti: Use crab meat or cooked shrimp instead of ground beef.

No matter what you fill them with, manicotti shells and melty cheese equals comfort food happiness!

Serving Suggestions

Serve your cheesy baked manicotti with:

  • Garlic bread or breadsticks
  • Mixed green salad
  • Steamed broccoli florets

Or make it a complete Italian meal with spaghetti and meatballs alongside. Tiramisu and cannoli make tasty dessert additions after such a hearty main dish.

Storing and Reheating Leftovers

Like many baked pasta dishes, manicotti reheats beautifully for easy leftover meals. To store, let the manicotti cool completely then cover tightly and refrigerate for 3-5 days. Reheat individual portions in the microwave with a splash of water or tomato sauce to prevent drying out.

You can also reheat the entire pan of manicotti covered in a 350°F oven until hot, about 25 minutes. Freeze leftover pieces of manicotti for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

FAQs

Still have some questions about making manicotti? Here are answers to some commonly asked questions:

Can I assemble this manicotti the night before?

Yes! Simply stuff and arrange the manicotti shells, pour over tomato sauce mixture and water and store covered overnight in the refrigerator before baking.

Do I really need to boil the manicotti shells?

For best results, we recommend par-boiling the manicotti per package instructions so they maintain their shape and don’t break while baking.

What temperature should manicotti bake at?

This dump and bake recipe bakes at 350°F both covered and uncovered for best results.

Can I freeze cooked manicotti shells?

Sure can! Let it cool fully before freezing tightly wrapped for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before using.

What kind of tomato sauce works best?

Any tomato-based pasta sauce will work great. Plain or Italian seasoned marinara and tomato basil sauces pair nicely with the rich filling.

What goes well with baked manicotti?

Serve it with salad, garlic bread and wine for a complete Italian feast. Veggie sides like broccoli or roasted carrots also pair nicely.

Dump And Bake Manicotti Recipe

Dump And Bake Manicotti Recipe

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Additional Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

This easy dump and bake manicotti recipe is loaded with cheese and meat sauce for the ultimate Italian comfort food. Get the simple 10 ingredient recipe now!

Ingredients

  • 1 box manicotti shells
  • Mozzarella sticks
  • 2 jars tomato sauce
  • 1 lb cooked ground beef
  • Shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Salt and pepper
  • Italian seasoning
  • Water
  • Mozzarella and parmesan cheese

Kitchen Tools

  • Large pot for cooking pasta
  • Mixing bowls
  • 13x9” baking dish

Instructions

  1. Cook ground beef over medium heat until browned and crumbled. Drain excess fat.
  2. In a large bowl mix together cooked ground beef, tomato sauce, shredded mozzarella cheese, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning.
  3. Cook manicotti according to package directions until al dente. Drain and set aside.
  4. Grease a 13x9” baking dish with nonstick spray. Lay manicotti shells in the bottom of the dish.
  5. Stuff each shell carefully with a whole mozzarella stick and top with several spoonfuls of meat sauce mixture.
  6. Pour 1 cup water evenly over stuffed shells.
  7. Cover tightly with foil and bake at 350°F for 30 minutes.
  8. Remove foil, top with additional mozzarella and parmesan cheese and bake uncovered for 10 more minutes.
  9. Let rest 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

Conclusion

Give this easy dump and bake manicotti recipe a try for your next Italian dinner or potluck. With a super simple prep and hearty cheese-stuffed pasta shells smothered in savory tomato sauce, it’s destined to become a new family favorite meal. Customize the filling to please all palates and bake until bubbly for rich, crowd-pleasing comfort food. Mangia!

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