Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni




10 min


40 min

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Don’t mix this one up with Canolli (the Italian dessert).

I’ve always been intimidated by Cannelloni. Firstly, it took me numerous times to finally remember the name. I kept on saying Callenoni. Just like when I was younger, I just could not pronounce yellow…I kept on saying lellow. My mother probably found it cute though! Lucky for me I had a neighbour, who was probably a teenager or in her early 20’s that taught me the correct pronunciation. I remember her sitting me down on her bed and kept on repeating yellow. Finally, one day I managed to say yellow. Great accomplishment. 🙂

Secondly, it looked difficult and a whole lot of work. It ISN’T! I did cheat a little, but it’s super easy.

Cannelloni is a cylinder pasta that has been stuffed with either minced meat (ragĂą), spinach and ricotta or fish, laid on tomato sauce (marinara/sugo) then topped with bĂ©chamel (besciamella) sauce and baked. It’s similar to American-Italian, Manicotti.

In this recipe, I used Barilla’s Arrabbiata (spicy marinara) sauce.

Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni

Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni


  • 12 tubes Cannelloni
  • ½ jar (200 grams) Marinara Sauce
  • ½ cup Mozzarella, grated
  • For garnish Parsley

Spinach & Ricotta Filling

  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 250 grams Ricotta
  • 240 grams Spinach, thawed
  • 1 medium Onion, chopped
  • 70 grams Parmesan, grated
  • To taste Salt
  • To taste Pepper


  • 25 grams All Purpose Flour
  • 25 grams Butter
  • 300 ml Milk
  • A pinch Nutmeg
  • 2 pieces Cloves
  • 1 piece Bay Leaf
  • To taste Salt


  • Spinach & Ricotta Filling
  1. Thaw spinach.
  2. Sauté onions. Add spinach and continue sautéing for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add ricotta, parmesan and seasoning. Mix well.
  4. Set aside.


  • BĂ©chamel
  1. Pierce the halved onion with cloves and bay leaf (oignon pique).
  2. Lightly toast flour in a medium sized pot. Do not brown the flour.
  3. Once it starts smelling like toasted nuts, add butter. Stir well. (This is now called roux)
  4. Cook roux till it smells like again, toasted nuts.Whisk milk 300ml at a time into the roux, till combined.
  5. Continue mixing in the rest of the milk, bring to the boil.
  6. Add oignon pique.
  7. Season with nutmeg and salt.
  8. Set aside for at least 15 minutes. Discard oignon pique before using.


  • Assembling Cannelloni
  1. Pre-heat oven to 190°C (375°F) – or go according to instructions on box of the Cannelloni’s.
  2. Grease a glass dish (13 x 9-inch).
  3. Spread marinara sauce onto dish.
  4. Add spinach and ricotta mixture into a piping bag or a small bag (snip off one side of the edge) and fill the Cannelloni’s.
  5. Arrange filled Cannelloni’s on marinara sauce.
  6. Once done, pour bĂ©chamel over Cannelloni’s.
  7. Sprinkle some mozzarella on top (optional) and bake for 30 minutes.
  8. Remove and allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving.


Cherry's Signature


Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni

Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni

Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni

Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni

Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni


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