The secret to Irresistibly Cheesy Manicotti is to get the cheese into every available space: not a single bite can get by without some melty, gooey, creamy, sharp cheese. This includes on top of the sweet and mellow tomato sauce and even inside the manicotti itself! Irresistibly Cheesy Manicotti will win over cheese-lovers immediately and convert anyone else into a cheese lover with just a single bite of this Italian-style marvel. No other pasta can compete with this dish in terms of pure unadulterated cheese!

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  • 5 1/2 ounces manicotti pasta
  • 1 pint of whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 16 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded and divided
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated and divided
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon dried Italian seasoning
  • 8 leaves of fresh basil, sliced into thin ribbons
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 (28-ounce) container marinara sauce


Step 1 –Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Step 2 –Boil a large pot of salted water.

Step 3 –Cook the manicotti for 1 minute, then drain the pasta. This process starts the cooking process but keeps the pasta firm enough to stuff later on.

Step 4 –In a large bowl, combine the ricotta, garlic, 1/2 of the mozzarella, 1/2 of the parmesan, the eggs, Italian seasoning, basil, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes, mixing well.

Step 5 –Add the cheese mixture to a large resealable plastic bag.

Step 6 –In the bottom of an 11×17-inch baking dish, spread 1/2 cup marinara sauce.

Step 7 –Snip a corner off of the bag containing the cheese mixture. Pipe the cheese filling into each manicotti tube.

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Step 8 –Arrange the filled manicotti in the baking dish on top of the sauce.

Step 9 –Pour the remaining sauce on top of the filled manicotti.

Step 10 –Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella and remaining parmesan on top of the sauce.

Step 11 –Cover the baking dish with foil.

Step 12 –Bake for 45 minutes.

Step 13 –Remove the foil and continue cooking until the cheese is melted, for about 15 minutes.

Step 14 –Serve hot!