Spinach and ricotta cannelloni

Spinach and ricotta cannelloni

Get ready to dig into a dish that is equal parts fancy and delicious. These spinach and ricotta cannelloni combine classic Italian flavours in tender pasta tubes filled with a mix of creamy ricotta and spinach. It is smothered in rich chopped tomatoes and covered with a decadent béchamel sauce and a sprinkle of grated parmesan cheese. It is the perfect balance of cheesy, savoury, tangy, and earthy. Delicious for both kids and adults, it is perfect for iftar.

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  • Boil cannelloni tubes in salted water until al dente as instructed on the package.
  • In a bowl, mix spinach, ricotta, and feta. Season with pepper.
  • Fill the cannelloni tubes with the spinach and ricotta mix using a teaspoon or a disposable icing bag.
  • Pour half of the tomatoes into a large ovenproof baking dish and place the cannelloni tubes in a single layer.
  • Pour over the remaining tomatoes and top with béchamel sauce. Sprinkle with parmesan.
  • Bake for 30 minutes or until the pasta is tender and the top is golden brown.
Enjoy!
Tips

Be sure to use high-quality, dried cannelloni tubes as they cook more evenly and hold their shape when cooked. Fill the tubes gently to avoid breaking them and try to fill them all the way through and to the edges to get an even distribution of filling in every bite. As for the filling itself, drain the ricotta cheese and thawed spinach to remove any excess liquid and prevent the spinach and cheese mixture from becoming too watery. Mix the ingredients for the filling thoroughly to ensure that everything is well combined and that the flavour is evenly distrusted throughout the spinach and ricotta cannelloni filling.

Questions about spinach and ricotta cannelloni

Making spinach and ricotta cannelloni can seem like a daunting task, but with our easy recipe and a few tips and tricks, it is quite easy. Read on to learn more about the famous pasta dish below.

What is spinach and ricotta cannelloni?
Spinach and ricotta cannelloni is an Italian pasta dish made with cannelloni tubes filled with a mix of spinach and ricotta cheese. The filled pasta tubes are then layered in a baking dish with tomato sauce and topped with béchamel sauce and grated parmesan cheese before being baked in the oven. It is a classic Italian dish that is popular for its delicious combination of flavours and textures and is often served as a main course.
How to make cannelloni with ricotta and spinach?
Combine spinach, ricotta, and feta cheese in a bowl and season with a pinch of pepper. Using either a teaspoon or a disposable icing bag, fill the al dente cannelloni tubes with the spinach and ricotta mixture. Pour half of the tomato sauce into a large ovenproof baking dish and place the filled cannelloni tubes in a single layer, then top with the remaining tomato sauce and a generous layer of béchamel sauce. Sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for about 30 minutes.
What sauce to use for baked spinach and ricotta cannelloni?
A creamy béchamel sauce is a classic accompaniment in many Italian pasta dishes, and these cannelloni with spinach and ricotta are no exception. The sauce adds a rich and well-appointed flavour to the dish when combined with the tomato sauce and grated parmesan cheese. The smooth and velvety texture of the béchamel sauce perfectly complements the tender pasta tubes and the flavourful filling, making it an essential component of this delicious pasta dish.

Ingredients

Feta, crumbled
200 g
Bechamel sauce with cheese
500 ml
Frozen spinach, thawed and drained
450 g
Ricotta cheese
300 g
Chopped tomatoes
1 can
Cannelloni Tubes, dried
16
Parmesan cheese, grated
90 g
Black pepper

Cannelloni with ricotta and spinach in tomato and béchamel sauce

Ricotta and spinach cannelloni is a true Italian masterpiece packed with bold flavours and tantalising textures. The filling is made from a mix of ricotta cheese, feta, and spinach and seasoned with pepper. It offers a creamy and earthy taste that pairs wonderfully with the combination of topped tomato sauce and béchamel sauce. 

The tanginess of the tomatoes cut through the richness of the béchamel, creating a harmonious flavour profile only made better by the nutty and salty accent of the grated parmesan on top. When baked in the oven, the pasta becomes tender and the flavours meld together in the best possible way, resulting in a delicious and satisfying dish. This spinach and ricotta cannelloni will be a hit with everyone joining the meal.

If you like classic Italian flavours, you should check out our recipes for one pot lasagne, cauliflower Margherita pizza with mozzarella cheese, and aubergine spaghetti bolognese.

Cheesy béchamel sauce for creaminess

The cheesy béchamel sauce is the cherry on top of the spinach ricotta cannelloni. Made from a mix of butter, flour, milk, and grated cheese, this sauce is the definition of indulgence. The addition of the cheesy béchamel sauce provides an added layer of creaminess to the cannelloni with spinach and ricotta that elevates it from just a regular pasta dinner to a true feast. It creates a smooth and rich texture that complements the tender pasta and filling and adds a nutty and slightly salty flavour, which pairs well with the tanginess of the tomato sauce and the earthy and creamy notes of the ricotta and spinach filling.

Add feta cubes for saltiness

Feta cheese is a great addition to the filling of the spinach and ricotta cannelloni, as it adds a delicious saltiness to the dish. The balance between ricotta and feta cheese in the filling is what makes it so delicious. Ricotta cheese provides a creamy and mild flavour that balances out the sharp and salty flavour of the feta. This creates a well-rounded flavour that is exquisite and allows for the spinach to shine through, making each bite of the spinach and ricotta cannelloni so enjoyable and satisfying.

Impress with Italian cannelloni with ricotta and spinach

If you want a dish that tastes amazing, looks fancy and impressive but is surprisingly easy to make, our spinach and ricotta cannelloni recipe is just right for you. The long and cylindrical pasta tubes filled with rich and flavourful spinach and cheese, covered in a delicious tomato and béchamel sauce, and topped with parmesan cheese make for a visually stunning presentation that is sure to impress your guests. Despite their impressive appearance, spinach and ricotta cannelloni are incredibly simple to make so you can enjoy a restaurant-quality meal in the comfort of your own home without any fuss.

Add your own touch

Adjusting the filling is a great way to customise the spinach and ricotta cannelloni to your liking and give it a personal touch. Whether you want to add some extra spices or incorporate new ingredients, the possibilities are endless.

If you are looking for a bit of heat or a touch of aromatic herb flavour, mix some red pepper flakes, dried basil, or lemon zest into the filling. It will enhance the spinach and ricotta cannelloni with bold flavours. You can also try incorporating new ingredients into the filling, such as mushrooms, courgette, or aubergine, to add more texture and make it even more delicious.