Cheesy Pesto-Meatball Manicotti

Cheesy Pesto-Meatball Manicotti Enlarge Image
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17 users rated this recipe an average rating of 3.5
Makes:
6 servings
Prep:
45 mins
Cook:
45 mins
Bake:
55 mins 350°
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Cheesy Pesto-Meatball Manicotti

Ingredients
12
dried manicotti
2
1
cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese (4 ounces)
1/2
cup finely chopped onion (1 medium)
1/2
cup finely chopped green sweet pepper (1 small)
1
egg, lightly beaten
2
tablespoons basil or dried tomato pesto
1
pound lean ground beef or ground turkey
3
cups Marinara Sauce or bottled tomato pasta sauce
 
Fresh basil (optional)

Directions

  1. Cook manicotti according to package directions, except cook for 2 minutes less than the package directs; drain. Place manicotti in a single layer on a sheet of greased foil.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl combine 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese, 1/2 cup of the Parmesan cheese, the onion, sweet pepper, egg, and pesto. Add ground meat; mix well. Divide mixture into 12 portions. Shape each portion into a 5-inch log. Push a log into each manicotti; arrange filled manicotti in an ungreased 3-quart rectangular baking dish. Pour Marinara Sauce over filled manicotti.
  3. Bake, covered, for 45 minutes. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 cup mozzarella cheese and the remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese. Bake, uncovered, about 10 minutes more or until cheeses are melted. If desired, garnish with fresh basil.

Marinara Sauce

Ingredients

2
tablespoons olive oil
1
cup finely chopped onion (1 large)
1/2
cup finely chopped carrot (1 medium)
1/2
cup finely chopped celery (1 stalk)
3
cloves garlic, minced
2
15 ounce cans tomato sauce
1
tablespoon tomato paste
1
cup water
1
cup dry red wine or cranberry juice
3
tablespoons snipped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley
2
tablespoons snipped fresh basil
1
tablespoon dried Italian seasoning
2
teaspoons sugar
1/4
teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
3
bay leaves
1/2
teaspoon salt
1/4
teaspoon ground black pepper

Directions

  1. In a large saucepan heat oil over medium heat. Add onion, carrot, celery, and garlic. Cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until vegetables are very tender but not brown, stirring occasionally.
  2. Stir in tomato sauce, tomato paste, water, wine, parsley, basil, Italian seasoning, sugar, crushed red pepper (if desired), bay leaves, salt, and black pepper.
  3. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, about 45 minutes or until sauce reaches desired consistency, stirring occasionally. Remove and discard bay leaves.

Nutrition Facts

(Cheesy Pesto-Meatball Manicotti)
    Per serving:
  • 625 kcal cal.,
  • 29 g fat
  • (12 g sat. fat,
  • 1 g polyunsaturated fat,
  • 10 g monounsatured fat),
  • 116 mg chol.,
  • 1650 mg sodium,
  • 45 g carb.,
  • 5 g fiber,
  • 12 g sugar,
  • 41 g pro.
  • Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet
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