Healthy delicious Broccoli Stuffed Manicotti with optional Burrata. A cozy homemade vegetarian meal that can be made ahead! Perfect for weeknight dinners or the holiday table.
- 12 ounces broccoli florets (about 6 cups raw)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 4–6 garlic cloves, rough chopped
- 14-ounce can diced tomatoes, with juices ( or crushed or whole)
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons maple syrup, honey or sugar
- 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning ( or thyme or oregano)
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 15-ounces whole milk ricotta (or make the vegan tofu ricotta), 2 cups
- 1 egg (optional)
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil (plus more for garnish)
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/8– 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 cup shredded romano or parmesan (or vegan parm)
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella (or vegan mozzarella)
- 12 uncooked manicotti shells (7 ounces)
- 2 burrata balls- optional, but delicious.
- Preheat oven to 400F
- Steam the broccoli until just barely tender, (not too soft!) cool and chop.
- Saute: At the same time, in a saute pan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat and saute onion 3-4 minutes, stirring. Add garlic, lower heat to medium and saute until golden and tender, 4-5 minutes.
- Divide. Place half of the sauteed onions/garlic mixture in a blender (for the sauce) and the other half in a medium bowl (for the filling).
- Blend the tomato sauce: Add the canned tomatoes (and their juices) to the blender, (with 1/2 of the sauteed onions),water, salt, maple, Italian seasoning, and olive oil. Blend until smooth, set aside.
- Make the filling: Chop up the steamed broccoli and add it to the bowl with the onions. Add the ricotta, egg, basil, lemon zest, salt, pepper, nutmeg and stir with a fork. Add the cheeses. If going the vegan route, taste for salt and pepper, adding more if you like. Place the broccoli filling in a large piping bag ( or large zip lock bag- cutting off the corner to fit inside the manicotti).
- Assemble: Coat the bottom and sides of a 13 x 9 inch baking dish with olive oil. Pour half the tomato sauce to cover the bottom (about 1 3/4 cups). Using the piping bag, generously fill 12 uncooked, dry, manicotti shells (getting filling all the way to the middle) and nestle in the sauce. Dot the edges of the manicotti with the extra filling. Cover with the remaining sauce. It will seem a little runny but the uncooked manicotti will soak up much of the moisture here. Dot with any remaining filling if you like. Top with optional Burrata Cheese. Cover tightly with foil.
- Bake: Bake 50 minutes at 400 F. Uncover, test that manicotti is tender (check with a sharp knife) then bake 10 more minutes, or until beautifully golden.
- Garnish with basil ribbons.
VEGAN: I have not made this vegan, but I suspect you could. Make the tofu ricotta, skip the egg and use vegan cheese. Taste the filling and make sure it is flavorful, adding more salt if needed.
You can also use store-bought marinara but add 1/2 cup water. It is necessary to thin it out just a bit with this uncooked pasta. You will need 3 1/2 cups total with the water.
Lastly, you can cook the manicotti first if you prefer, then fill, up to you.
- Serving Size: 2 Manicotti with Burrata Cheese
- Calories: 539
- Sugar: 8.9 g
- Sodium: 671.8 mg
- Fat: 28.4 g
- Saturated Fat: 13.6 g
- Carbohydrates: 44.6 g
- Fiber: 4.4 g
- Protein: 29 g
- Cholesterol: 101.3 mg
Keywords: Broccoli Manicotti, Vegetarian Manicotti recipe, vegetarian comfort food recipe, vegan manicotti