With 4 kinds of cheese and spinach this recipe for Crock-Pot Manicotti is not only easy to make but tastes so good that even the kids will love it!
I love Italian food! In fact, if I were to go anywhere in the world for the food alone it would have to be Italy. The pasta alone would have me in heaven for sure!
If you are looking for an easy Italian recipe that you can whip up for dinner in a jiffy for your slow cooker, then look no further than this tasty cheese and spinach filled crock-pot manicotti recipe.
Yes there is spinach in the cheesy filling, but my kids didn’t even notice it and ate it all up with requests for seconds!
Because this is a pasta dish you don’t need to cook the manicotti for super long in the slow cooker. Just 2 hours on the HIGH setting or 4 hours on the LOW setting.
The pasta is filled with the cheesy filling while still uncooked and straight out of the box and then nestled between layers of your favorite marinara sauce and more cheese. Then the whole thing is cooked right in the slow cooker!
- Ricotta Cheese – I used whole fat ricotta cheese but you can use skim milk too to save a little on calories and fat.
- Parmesan Cheese – You will use Parmesan cheese in both the filling and topping of the dish.
- Chèvre Goat Cheese – This adds a lovely tanginess to the cheese filling. If you cannot find chèvre you can either omit it or substitute marscapone or cream cheese.
- Mozzarella Cheese – This will be used in both the filling and topping.
- Garlic – I like to mince my own garlic, but in a pinch for time you can use pre-minced garlic.
- Dried Oregano
- Frozen Spinach – You will want to thaw the frozen spinach and then drain and squeeze the excess water from the spinach. I usually just put the thawed spinach in a colander and then give it a good squeezing with my hands a few times.
- Kosher Salt
- Black Pepper
Manicotti Pasta – I used Barilla brand (not sponsored), but other brands will work too.
- Marinara Sauce – I prefer to use my homemade marinara sauce which I almost always have in containers in my freezer. But feel free to use your favorite brand of jarred marinara or spaghetti sauce.
- Fresh Basil – As a lovely garnish and pop of fresh flavor, chop up a couple of fresh basil leaves to garnish the final dish right before serving. I grow my own fresh basil in my kitchen, but most grocery stores have little clam-shell containers of fresh basil year around.
- In a medium mixing bowl combine all of the ingredients for the filling and stir until fully combined.
- Spoon filling into a 1-gallon sized zippered food storage bag and snip off one of the bottom corners with scissors.
- Pour 1/3 of the marinara sauce in the bottom of either a 3.5 quart casserole slow cooker or a 6 quart or larger slow cooker.
- Pipe the ricotta filling inside each manicotti pasta and place the filled pasta into the sauce in the slow cooker.
- Pour 1/3 of the sauce over the top of the filled pasta.
- Sprinkle 1/2 cup each of the shredded mozzarella and Parmesan cheese on top.
- Pour the remaining 1/3 of the sauce on top of the cheese and then add the remaining 1/2 cup each of the mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
- Cover and cook on LOW for 4 hours or on HIGH for 2 hours.
- Garnish cooked manicotti with chopped fresh basil.
- 3.5 Quart Casserole Slow Cooker OR 6 Quart, 6.5 Quart Or 7 Quart Slow Cooker
- Medium Mixing Bowl
- Cheese Grater
- Wooden Spoon
- Measuring Cups And Spoons
- Cutting Board
- Gallon Sized Food Storage Bag
More Amazing Slow Cooker Italian Recipes To Try!
- Crock-Pot Ravioli Casserole
- Slow Cooker Sausage Cheese Tortellini Soup
- Crock-Pot Zuppa Toscana Soup + Video
- Slow Cooker Tomato & Spinach Pasta
- Crock-Pot Marsala Beef + Video
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