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You can prepare most components of our lentil ricotta manicotti a day or two in advance. An hour before showtime you can assemble the dish, then sit back and let them bake in marinara for some Italian-inspired perfection!
2 Tbsp (30 mL) olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 can (28 oz/796 mL) crushed tomatoes
1 tsp (5 mL) salt
1 tsp (5 mL) sugar
1/4 tsp (1 mL) pepper
1/2 cup (125 mL) chopped fresh basil OR 2 tsp (10 mL) dried basil
1 package (10 oz/300 g) frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) cooked split red lentils
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
3/4 cup (175 mL) grated Parmesan cheese, divided
2 large eggs
pinch, ground nutmeg
1 box (12-14 tubes) manicotti noodles
Quick tips: To save time, use store-bought marinara sauce - about 1 L (4 cups). Marinara sauce can be made up to 4 days ahead.
The lentil and ricotta filling can be made up to 1 day ahead.