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Italian Dishes - Easy Recipes

Updated on March 23, 2018
Pamela99 profile image

I am interested in making some delicious, unusual meals and desserts, particularly for special occasions. Easy, quick meals are also great.


Italian cuisine is loved by most people, and it is not difficult to follow these simple recipes. There are several pasta recipes to use manicotti to make a delicious Italian dish.

Some recipes call for ham and cheese, or spinach and ricotta cheese, plus there is a Mexican recipe that uses ground beef and re-fried beans. This recipe below is great, if you like a good spicy Italian sausage. No one leaves the table hungry.

Manicotti Ready to Eat

Photo Courtesy of Gourmet
Photo Courtesy of Gourmet

Spicy Manicotti

5 stars from 1 rating of Spicy Manicotti

Spicy Manicotti

source flickr
source flickr

Cook Time

Prep time: 30 min
Cook time: 55 min
Ready in: 1 hour 25 min
Yields: 8 Servings


  • 1 lb. bulk spicy Italian sausage
  • 1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 (28 oz.) jar marinara sauce
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 cups ricotta cheese
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 (4 oz.) can green chilies, chopped
  • 3 tbsp. fresh parsley, minced
  • 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 18 manicotti shells, uncooked


  1. Preheat oven to 375°. Spray 13X9-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. Combine ricotta, 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, beaten eggs, green chilies, Italian seasoning, minced parsley, garlic powder, salt and pepper in medium bowl. Set aside.
  3. Crumble sausage into large skillet; use medium heat to brown. Stir to separate meat while cooking, then drain on paper towels.
  4. Add tomatoes including juice and marinara sauce to the same skillet and bring to a bowl. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes. Pour approximately 1/3 of mixture into prepared baking dish.
  5. Stuff each manicotti shell with cheese mixture. Place the shells in baking pan and top with sausage, then pour the remaining tomato sauce over the top.
  6. Cover tightly with aluminum foil to bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour. Let sit 5 minutes before serving. Serve with Parmesan cheese if desired.


Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1/8 th of dish
Calories 418
Calories from Fat162
% Daily Value *
Fat 18 g28%
Saturated fat 9 g45%
Carbohydrates 42 g14%
Fiber 4 g16%
Protein 24 g48%
Cholesterol 100 mg33%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

Vegetarian Manicotti with Tofu

Italian Manicotti or Lasgna

This Italian spicy manicotti dish is delicious but obviously not low calorie. Many pasta dishes do have a lot of calories. Make a healthy salad to go with the dish and use the main dish in moderation. It is well worth the effort to serve this dish to your family. Lasagna is also a favorite Italian food and the recipe below is delicious.

I know there are many people trying to eat healthier and there are many vegetarians also. I included the vegetarian recipe as well.

Cheese Lasagna


World's Best Cheese Lasagna


  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage
  • 3/4 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup minced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
  • 2 (6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 12 lasagna noodles
  • 16 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 pound mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


  • In a Dutch oven, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned.
  • Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, fennel seeds, Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley.
  • Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  • Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  • Preheat oven to 375º F (190 degrees C).
  • To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture.
  • Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
  • Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.


Most everyone likes Italian food.  Many of the dishes are one dish meals with the exception of a salad.  They are not too difficult to make and no one leaves the table hungry.

The copyright, renewed in 2018, for this article is owned by Pamela Oglesby. Permission to republish this article in print or online must be granted by the author in writing.


Submit a Comment

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    AlmostLola, Thanks for your comments.

  • AlmostLola profile image

    AlmostLola 7 years ago

    Sounds so good!

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Nancy, Thank you for your comments.

  • nancy_30 profile image

    nancy_30 7 years ago from Georgia

    Thanks for the recipe. It looks and sounds really good.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Miata, I understand as I feel the same way. Thanks for your comments.

  • prettydarkhorse profile image

    prettydarkhorse 7 years ago from US

    yummy again, What I like with myself is that even though I like to eat pasta a lot, I don't gain weight, this is irresistible, Maita

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Hello, Thank you for your comment anyway. It is not for everyone.

  • Hello, hello, profile image

    Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

    It sounds very tasty but any pasta, apart from spagetties, is not for me.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Support Med, It is good but rich. Thank you for your comments.

  • Support Med. profile image

    Support Med. 7 years ago from Michigan

    Oh God, there goes any thoughts on diet! I love pasta, sauce and cheeses together, yummy, yum, yum... The combined ingredients sound delicious! Voted-up/rated!

    PS: Great suggestion about the salad with this meal. There was recently a news feature about people eating pasta meals and pizza, but no added veggies. They are important.Sometimes, I even have green beans, or spinach, but salad is my fav with this type of meal.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Habee, I hope you enjoy it. Thanks for the comment.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Darlene, Thank you for the compliment. You are always so sweet. Thanks for the comments also.

  • habee profile image

    Holle Abee 7 years ago from Georgia

    Okay, I'm making this one - hubby will love it!

  • Darlene Sabella profile image

    Darlene Sabella 7 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

    What a great hub you have shared, we all love you because you care. You share so much with delight, so now we are ready to sit down all together, for a bite.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    Tom, Thanks for your comment.

    rkyclak, I hope you enjoy it. Thanks for your comment.

    BPOP, I hope you also enjoy it. Thanks for your comment.

  • breakfastpop profile image

    breakfastpop 7 years ago

    I like the sound of this recipe. I am definitely going to try it.

  • rkhyclak profile image

    rkhyclak 7 years ago from Ohio

    Pamela, this sounds delicious! I'll be making this for us soon. Thanks!

  • Tom Whitworth profile image

    Tom Whitworth 7 years ago from Moundsville, WV


    I love all kinds of pasta. I must have been Italian in a previous life.

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 7 years ago from United States

    50 Caliber, I'm glad you like the recipe and I appreciate your stopping by. Thanks.

  • 50 Caliber profile image

    50 Caliber 7 years ago from Arizona

    Pamela99, I've a similar recipe and it is good stuff, thanks for this, I'll be trying it soon. It is a good dish in all forms for dividing and freezing for one, I make it a lot for that reason and microwave friendly, 50