Babs's Manicotti

Serve 6
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My mother’s homemade manicotti recipe with Italian sausage and ricotta cheese. Guaranteed crowd pleaser!


1 pound manicotti
1 pound Italian sausage (use however hot you can stand)
1/2 pound mushrooms, roughly chopped
5 cloves garlic, chopped
2 pounds ricotta
1/2 pound mozzarella
1 jar Marinara sauce
1 28 ounce can Italian stewed tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Salt and pepper


1) Start sauce by combining the marinara, tomatoes, and salt and pepper to taste in a large sauce pan. Bring that to a simmer and then let it bubble on low.

2) Next, you need to brown all of that sausage. Get it started in a pan. Break it apart and let it brown. About half way through add those mushrooms and chopped garlic. You want those flavors incorporated with the sausage.

3) That has to cook for 15 or 20 minutes and then you need to drain some of the oil away. You can pour off a bit of it or let it drain on a few paper towels.

4) Cook pasta according to package. Don’t overcook the pasta or it will fall apart while stuffing it.

5) Mix ricotta and the sausage mixture. Also add all of your parsley except 2 Tablespoons of it. Stir this well and it get it all mixed up. You don’t want huge chunks of sausage or ricotta stuffed in these guys.

6) Stuff manicotti with sausage mixture. Work slowly and from both ends to make sure you get them completely stuffed. A small spoon helps.

7) As you finish the manicotti lay them in a 9×13 baking dish. Put down a layer of marinara sauce first and then layer in your shells. When all the shells are in pour in the rest of the sauce, the mozzarella, and the additional parsley.

8) This needs to bake for probably 40 minutes at 350. What you are looking for is the signature cheese bubble in the middle of the dish. Once you pull this out, make sure you let it rest for 10 minutes or you will burn your mouth!