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Turkey Manicotti

Turkey manicotti recipe

This turkey manicotti is amazing – noodles filled with ground turkey in a mushroom cream sauce, then smothered in tomato sauce and cheese and baked.

Baked turkey manicotti

This turkey manicotti is some of the best pasta ever to come out of my kitchen. 

And we eat a lot of pasta around here.

My mom’s lasagna recipe may still win out as the all time pasta favourite, but this is a pretty close second.  

This turkey manicotti does take a bit of time to prepare.  

Don’t run away though, because none of the steps are difficult, and the end result is so totally worth it!  

Pan of turkey manicotti

Plus, if you’re strapped for time and want to skip a step, you can replace the scratch tomato sauce with a jar of prepared pasta sauce.  

Homemade is always better I think, but I am definitely not against the jarred pasta sauce to speed up dinner time prep!

This turkey manicotti recipe makes a large 9×13 inch pan of pasta, so you’ll very likely have leftovers.  

Which is amazing.  Leftover turkey manicotti makes the best lunch ever.

Easy Turkey Manicotti

What is the best way to stuff manicotti shells?

It can be a fairly messy job trying to stuff the manicotti shells. But you don’t need to boil them first so that helps.

I find the easiest way to stuff the manicotti shells with the turkey filling is to hold the shell upright so one end is on the pan.

Then spoon the filling into the shell until it is full and lay it down in the pan.

There will still be some filling that doesn’t make it into the shells but that’s okay, just leave it around the shells in the baking dish. It’ll all be good once it’s baked.

Easy to make turkey manicotti

 

How to make Turkey Manicotti:

  • The tomato sauce needs to simmer for 15 minutes, so once you get it simmering, make the turkey filling. This will save a bit of time by making both sauces at once. If you’d like to skip a step, replace the homemade tomato sauce with a jar of your favourite prepared pasta sauce.
  • The ingredient list for this recipe looks long, but I promise, it’s easy to make. A lot of those ingredients are just seasonings, and it will all come together very easily so don’t let the long instructions scare you away!
  • Make sure to let the turkey manicotti sit for 5-10 minutes after baking it before you serve it. It needs this time to set up. If you cut into it immediately it will be too runny.
  • Here are some more great baked pasta recipes for you:

I’ve also shared this Turkey Manicotti recipe over on Food Fanatic.   

Yield: serves 6

Turkey Manicotti

Turkey manicotti recipe

This turkey manicotti is amazing - noodles filled with ground turkey in a mushroom cream sauce, then smothered in tomato sauce and cheese and baked. Who's ready for supper?

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 40 minutes

Ingredients

For the Tomato Sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 6 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup Mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1 28-ounce can Canned Diced Tomatoes, or 796ml in Canada
  • 1/8 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Dried Oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Dried Basil

For the Filling:

  • 1 pound Ground Turkey, (450g)
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup Mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 2/3 cup Chicken Stock
  • 2/3 cup Milk, (I used 2%)
  • 1/4 cup All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Onion Powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Dried Thyme
  • 1 teaspoon Curry Powder

For the Pasta:

  • 8 ounces Manicotti, uncooked (250g)
  • 8 ounces Cottage Cheese, (I used 2%)
  • 1/4 cup Shredded Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Make the Tomato Sauce: 

  1. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
  2. Add the garlic and mushrooms and cook, stirring for about a minute, until fragrant.
  3. Add the tomatoes, red pepper flakes, salt, oregano, pepper, and basil and stir.
  4. Bring the sauce to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes.
  5. Set aside.

Make the Filling for the Manicotti: 

  1. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, over medium heat, add the turkey, garlic, and mushrooms.
  2. Cook, stirring and breaking up the turkey, until the turkey is cooked through.
  3. Whisk the chicken stock, milk, and flour together until smooth and pour it slowly into the pan, stirring constantly.
  4. Add the salt, pepper, onion powder, thyme, and curry powder and continue cooking and stirring until it thickens, about 2-3 minutes.
  5. Remove from the heat.

Assemble the Manicotti:

  1. In a 9x13 inch baking dish, place the uncooked manicotti noodles.
  2. Fill each noodle with the turkey filling. I find it easiest to hold the noodle upright, with one end flat on the baking dish, and spoon the filling in until it is full, then lay it down.
  3. Don’t worry about the filling spilling out, it’s okay, and any leftover filling can just be spooned around the noodles on the bottom of the dish.
  4. Once the noodles are all filled, spread the cottage cheese over top of them all.
  5. Pour the tomato sauce over top of this and spread it out evenly.
  6. Sprinkle the mozzarella and parmesan cheese over top of the tomato sauce.
  7. Bake for 50 minutes or until the cheese is browned and bubbling.
  8. Let the manicotti sit for 5-10 minutes before serving.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1/6 recipe

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 495Total Fat: 29gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 16gCholesterol: 125mgSodium: 1456mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 4gSugar: 7gProtein: 38g

Nutrition Information is estimated based on ingredients used and may not be exact.

  1. Nancy Peckler says:

    I am thinking of making this for a vacation dinner. Should I freeze it after or before cooking it? Thanks for a speedy reply.

    1. Stacey says:

      I would freeze it before baking it. When you cook it either defrost it for a day or two in the fridge before baking, or increase the baking time by 30-45 minutes if you’re baking it from frozen and cover it with foil for the first 30-45 minutes of baking so it doesn’t get too brown on top. I haven’t actually made this one from frozen before, but that’s what I do with my lasagna and it works great. As long as you bake until it’s hot and bubbling it’ll be good. It would also reheat just fine if you prefer to bake it before freezing (if that’s easier on vacation!) – just let it cool completely then cover it tightly with plastic wrap and aluminum foil and freeze. Then reheat it at 350F, covered in foil, until it’s hot and bubbling – I think it would take about 30-45 minutes from frozen.

  2. Kim H says:

    Yay! I’m so glad!!! I am doing something else with my chicken tonight but I will try that this weekend. I am getting ready to make your blueberry peach cobbler. I cannot wait to try it. I will write a review/comment tomorrow. Thank you again Stacey!!!

  3. Kim H says:

    Oh Thank you Stacey! I made it the other night and it was really amazing!!! My oven cooks things a little quicker than most recipes call for so I wish I had taken it out 10 minutes sooner, but was afraid the noodles would not be cooked. Anyway, it really was delicious…My husband ate all of the leftovers. He said it was one of the best dishes I had made in a long time. I was so happy that he loved it so much because normally I end up throwing out or freezing leftovers because he doesn’t like to eat something more than 2 days but yesterday he finished every last bit of it. Thank you for such a hit!!! I have made tons of lasagna over the years, but never made manicotti. I came back today to not only post this but to find something for supper. I was thinking about making some sort of chicken with cauliflower mash. I love mashed potatoes but hardly make because of the carb factor.
    Thanks again and I will for sure write reviews for anything I cook from your blog. :-)))) Really appreciate you!

    1. stacey says:

      Thank you so much Kim! This comment just made my day! I’m so glad you enjoyed it – we love this dish – the original recipe used a bunch of premade stuff though so I was so happy to convert it into an entirely “from scratch” recipe. We love the leftovers too, one of the few things where we don’t get sick of the leftovers. If you’re looking for chicken – the Honey Lime Chicken would go well with cauliflower mash I think and is a quick dish to prep!

  4. Kim H says:

    Wow, I just saw somewhere that you left a comment on someones post and was very happy I clicked on your website!!! Looks like amazing food. I think I am going to make this tonight. I will leave another post if I do to let you know how it turned out. I am happy to see and read peoples comments but I just wish more people would comment after they make the meal and tell us their experience. Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful site. I will be here often.

    1. stacey says:

      Thank you so much for your kind words Kim! I hope you enjoy the manicotti and would love to hear how it turned out for you!

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