Pasta

Spinach And Ricotta Cannelloni

Spinach and ricotta cannelloni, a classic, foolproof recipe and a family favourite. Cannelloni pasta tubes filled with a creamy spinach and ricotta filling, baked in a super simple and delicious tomato sauce and topped with melting mozzarella cheese.

You cannot go wrong with this recipe…

A close up of spinach and ricotta cannelloni in a large baking tray topped with melted mozzarella cheese

Like other classic Italian recipes such as lasagne and beef ragu, spinach and ricotta cannelloni is one of those recipes I will always go back to. It’s classic, comforting and surprisingly simple to make!

Since living in Italy I have seen so many cannelloni recipes. A more rustic and traditional way of making them is with fresh lasagna sheets (homemade). Dollop some of your filling, be it spinach and ricotta or ragu and roll it up to create the cannelloni.

The other option is to use pre-made cannelloni pasta tubes. I love using these because they are so easy to fill and ensure each tube is evenly filled, that way everyone gets an even portion. You should be able to buy cannelloni pasta tubes in most supermarkets, they’re pretty common and they save so much time.

Tip: Use a piping bag or cut the corner off of a disposable freezer bag to fill your cannelloni easily.

How To Make Spinach And Ricotta Cannelloni – Step By Step

Finely chop a shallot and garlic and saute in a pan with a little olive oil for 1-2 minutes. Add the tomato passata (pureed tomatoes) with some torn basil leaves, salt and pepper and simmer for around 5 minutes, set aside (photos 1 & 2).

Tip: Making a simple tomato sauce with shallot, garlic and basil will give this spinach and ricotta cannelloni an extra punch of flavour and it’s so worth the extra 5 minute effort.

step by step photos for making spinach and ricotta cannelloni

Add some washed raw, fresh spianch to a large pan and wilt on a medium heat. Tip: Add a splash of water (around 1 tbsp) to stop the spinach from burning and to help wilt it all. Leave to cool and then squeeze out as much water as possible (photos 3&4).

To make the spinach and ricotta filling, add the ricotta, parmesan, chopped spinach, egg, nutmeg and salt and pepper to a large mixing bowl and mix everything together until creamy and thoroughly combined (photos 5&6).

To assemble the spinach and ricotta cannelloni, add a few spoonfuls of tomato sauce to the bottom of a large baking dish. Transfer the spinach and ricotta filling to a piping bag or a disposable freezer bag with the corner cut off and pipe the filling into the cannelloni pasta tubes. Add each filled cannelloni tube in an even layer in the baking dish (photos 7-9).

spinach and ricotta cannelloni topped with mozzarella before and after being baked in the oven

Top the cannelloni with the remaining tomato sauce then top with torn mozzarella and grated parmesan. Cover with tin foil and bake for 30 minutes then uncovered for 10 minutes or until the cheese is golden and bubbling.

Tip: Make this in a disposable foil tray and freeze to make meal time throughout the week even easier. Enjoy a home cooked , delicious meal in a matter of minutes!

More Cannelloni Fillings To Try;

If you’ve tried this easy cannelloni recipe or any other recipe on the blog then don’t forget to rate the recipe and let me know how you got on in the comments below, I love hearing from you! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM and PINTEREST to see more delicious food and what I’m getting up to.

a close up of two spianch and ricotta cannelloni tubes on a serving spoon

5 from 9 votes
spinach and ricotta cannelloni in a large baking dish
Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
40 mins
Total Time
1 hr
 

Spinach and ricotta cannelloni made with a simple tomato, basil sauce and topped with melting mozzarella cheese.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 528 kcal
Author: Emily Kemp
Ingredients
For the sauce
  • 1 shallot
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3 1/2 cups (700g) passata/pureed tomatoes
  • 1 small bunch basil
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
For the filling
  • 12.3 oz (350g) ricotta cheese
  • 8.8 oz (250g) raw fresh spinach
  • 2 tbsp parmesan grated
  • 1 pinch of nutmeg
  • salt and pepper
To assemble
  • 12 cannelloni pasta tubes
  • 4.4 oz (125g) ball of mozzarella
  • Extra grating of parmesan
Instructions
To make the sauce
  1. Finely chop the shallot and garlic and saute in a pan with a little olive oil for around 1-2 minutes until soft and translucent but not browned. Add the tomato passata (pureed tomatoes) with some torn basil leaves, salt and pepper and simmer for around 5 minutes, set aside.

To make the filling
  1. Add the washed raw, fresh spianch to a large pan and wilt on a medium heat. Add a splash of water (around 1 tbsp) to stop the spinach from burning and to help wilt it all. Leave to cool and then squeeze out as much water as possible and finely chop.

  2. To make the spinach and ricotta filling, add the ricotta, parmesan, chopped spinach, egg, nutmeg and salt and pepper to a large mixing bowl and mix everything together until creamy and thoroughly combined.
To assemble
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/350F/gas mark 4.

  2. To assemble the spinach and ricotta cannelloni, add a few spoonfuls of tomato sauce to the bottom of a large baking dish. Transfer the spinach and ricotta filling to a piping bag or a disposable freezer bag with the corner cut off and pipe the filling into the cannelloni pasta tubes. Add each filled cannelloni tube in an even layer in the baking dish.
  3. Top the cannelloni with the remaining tomato sauce then top with torn mozzarella and grated parmesan. Cover with tin foil and bake for 30 minutes then uncovered for 10 minutes or until the cheese is golden and bubbling.
Recipe Notes

To Freeze

Make as above in a foil disposable tray, cover and freeze. Thaw completely before baking in the oven.

More Cannelloni Fillings To Try;

Nutrition Facts
Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni
Amount Per Serving
Calories 528 Calories from Fat 198
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 22g 34%
Saturated Fat 12g 60%
Cholesterol 71mg 24%
Sodium 422mg 18%
Potassium 1487mg 42%
Total Carbohydrates 56g 19%
Dietary Fiber 7g 28%
Sugars 12g
Protein 28g 56%
Vitamin A 151.9%
Vitamin C 50.6%
Calcium 47.9%
Iron 40.9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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22 Comments

  • Reply
    Tiffany Alexandria
    February 13, 2018 at 6:44 pm

    This dish is sooo beautiful and I love how there are other fillings to try. I can have this all week every day!!!

  • Reply
    Marlee
    February 11, 2018 at 1:41 am

    Ok so I’m devising a plan involving me moving to Italy so you can make me food ;P seriously though! I love how simple and delicious this meal is!

  • Reply
    Amanda
    February 6, 2018 at 9:27 pm

    This looks AMAZING Emily! Stunning photography (per usual). This recipe is a must try for me 🙂

  • Reply
    Elaine @ Dishes Delish
    February 6, 2018 at 4:59 pm

    Mmmm. I love that you put spinach in the filling! I love cannelloni and love how easy it is to make. Can you believe that I never thought of using a pastry bag to pipe the filling in the pasta tubes? DOH! Great tip! I can’t wait to try your recipe! It looks both delicious and pretty!

  • Reply
    Amanda Wren-Grimwood
    February 6, 2018 at 4:47 pm

    I love cannelloni and now that I know how that ricotta is lower fat, it’s my favourite with pasta. Can’t wait to try your version!

  • Reply
    Laura
    February 6, 2018 at 4:11 pm

    I love cannelloni and even if I make my own pasta I like to use the cannelloni already made. It is so much easier. This is a nice recipe, I never tried with tomato sauce, I usually make them white. I should try next time which might be tomorrow.

  • Reply
    Jessica Fasano Formicola
    February 6, 2018 at 2:30 pm

    That golden melty cheese is everything. I want to dive in!

  • Reply
    Anna
    February 6, 2018 at 2:25 pm

    this is making me drool so much! Perfect classic, ideal cosy meal for any day of the week!

  • Reply
    Pam Greer
    February 6, 2018 at 2:14 pm

    The step by step instructions are perfect!! This is one of my favorite Italian dishes.!

  • Reply
    Alysas
    February 6, 2018 at 2:09 pm

    I love how bubbly the cheese is in your pics and I love the other stuffing options you give — looking forward to the Tuscan sausage ragu!

  • Reply
    Kate | Veggie Desserts
    February 6, 2018 at 12:54 pm

    Canneloni is an amazing classic comfort food. Thanks for the step by step pix, you’ve made it look easy!

  • Leave a Reply

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