This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Hunt’s Tomatoes. All opinions are 100% mine.

Three Cheese Baked Manicotti is a classic Italian recipe for a reason! It’s creamy, cheesy, and covered with a vibrant homemade sauce.

Cheese Manicotti on a plate with text overlay for Pinterest

When I go out to an Italian restaurant, I almost always get some stuffed pasta. The flavors are delicious, and it’s just some good old’ classic Italian comfort food. When I set my meal plan for the week, I have one main thing that I shoot for with every recipe: I want restaurant-quality food without the cost of eating out.

Luckily for me, Hunt’s just came out with a new style of tomatoes. Once I saw Hunt’s San Marzano style tomatoes, I instantly knew that the tomatoes would help me achieve Italian food perfection!

So I set out to make Three Cheese Stuffed Manicotti with Hunt’s San Marzano style tomatoes. I love these tomatoes because they are sweeter, and the acidity is lower, which helps to make the best sauce for my Manicotti recipe. Hunt’s San Marzano style tomatoes are canned in a thick juice, which makes them perfect for all sorts of Italian recipes!

Ingredients needed to make Baked Three Cheese Manicotti

I love cooking with quality ingredients, because they elevate any dish, and that’s just another reason I love Hunt’s San Marzano Style Tomatoes. They are all-natural and steam peeled, so the tomatoes are vibrant and fresh tasting, which makes it seem like you are eating a dish straight from your favorite Italian restaurant.

Manicotti is one of those dishes that can be dressed up for special occasions, or it’s something you can make ahead of time and serve on one of those busy school nights. Either way, this Manicotti recipe will help you get your fix for restaurant-quality pasta dishes without having to leave the house.

Baked Three Cheese Manicotti in a baking dish

3-Cheese Baked Manicotti Recipe Questions Answered:

How do you fill manicotti shells?

The quickest way to stuff manicotti shells is to fill a gallon Ziploc bag with the filling. Snip the corner of the bag, then hold an uncooked shell in your hand and squeeze the filling inside of the shell.

What is the difference between cannelloni and manicotti?

The two are similar, and people often confuse them. However, it comes down to how each dish is made.

Cannelloni typically has meat and veggies along with cheese that is rolled inside the pasta.

Manicotti, on the other hand, is a pasta filled with just a cheese mixture. The sauce layered on top may have meat or veggies in it, though.

Three Cheese Manicotti on a plate with Hunts Tomatoes in the background

Three Recipe and Flavor Variations:

  • Beef and Cheese Manicotti: Prepare the recipe below except for the filling. Use a 15 oz container of ricotta cheese, and mix the rest of the cheese filling with 1 pound of cooked ground beef.
  • Baked Manicotti Puttanesca: Prepare the recipe below with a few additions. Add three finely minced anchovy fillets to the sauce. Add them at the same time you add the garlic. Also, add ¼ cup pitted and chopped kalamata olives and 2 Tablespoons rinsed and drained capers to the cheese filling.
  • Baked Manicotti with Spinach: Prepare the recipe below with a few additions. Add a 10-ounce package of frozen chopped spinach that has been thawed, squeezed dry, and chopped fine to the cheese filling. Also, add a pinch or 2 of nutmeg to the cheese filling.

Ingredients for Baked Three Cheese Manicotti

Can you make Baked Manicotti ahead of time:

Yes, you can make manicotti ahead of time and bake it at a later date! You have two options!

  1. Prepare and keep it in the refrigerator: Prepare the recipe as directed right up to “BAKE AND BROIL.” Cover the baking dish with plastic wrap and then foil and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. When you’re ready to bake, remove the plastic wrap and one layer of foil and follow the “BAKE AND BROIL” directions below, but add 5-10 minutes to the baking time.
  2. Prepare and keep it in the freezer: Prepare the recipe as directed right up to “BAKE AND BROIL.” Cover the baking dish with two layers of plastic wrap and then two layers of foil, and freeze up to 3 months. When you’re ready to bake, remove the plastic wrap and one sheet of foil and follow the “BAKE AND BROIL” directions below, but increase the baking time to 2 hours since the dish is frozen.

How long is the prepared dish good for:

  1. SERVE: You can keep the baked manicotti at room temperature for no longer than 2 hours before it needs to be refrigerated.
  2. STORE: Cover with plastic wrap or foil and keep it in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days.
  3. FREEZE: Cover the baked and cooled dish in two layers of plastic wrap and two layers of foil, and freeze up to 2-3 months.

A plate of Baked Three Cheese Manicotti and the baking dish of manicotti


You have two options, reheating it from the frozen state or reheating it after thawing.

  1. Remove plastic wrap (but not the foil) and heat the frozen manicotti in a 350-degree oven for 1 ½ – 2 hours, or until heated through.
  2. Thaw manicotti in the fridge overnight and then remove the plastic wrap (but not the foil) and bake at 350 degrees F until heated through about 30-40 minutes.
2 cheese manicotti on a dinner plate.
5 from 4 votes

Baked Manicotti

Prep Time 30 minutes
8 people
Three Cheese Baked Manicotti is a classic Italian recipe for a reason! It’s creamy, cheesy, and covered with a vibrant homemade sauce.



  • 8 oz package manicotti


  • 2 28- ounce cans Hunt’s San Marzano Style Whole Peeled Tomatoes
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 medium cloves garlic minced
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • salt
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil


  • 3 cups part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese about 2 cups
  • 2 ounces grated Parmesan cheese about 1 cup
  • 2 large eggs lightly beaten
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper


  • 2 ounces grated Parmesan cheese about 1 cup
  • 2 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese about 1/2 cup


  • Chopped fresh basil
  • Chopped fresh parsley
  • Grated Parmesan



  • Cook pasta according to package instructions. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the boiled manicotti to cool on a piece of wax paper or foil that has been lightly sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.


  • Move oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 375 degrees F.


  • Pulse 1 can of tomatoes, with their juice, in a food processor until coarsely chopped, about 3 or 4 pulses. Transfer tomatoes to a bowl and repeat with the remaining can of tomatoes.
    Pulse the tomatoes in a food processor until combined.
  • In a large saucepan over medium heat, add oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Heat until the garlic is fragrant, about 1 minute.
  • Stir in tomatoes and ½ teaspoon of salt and bring the sauce to a simmer. Continue to simmer until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 15 minutes. Stir in fresh basil and season the sauce with salt.
    Cook the sauce until it thickens.


  • In a medium bowl, stir together ricotta, 2 cups mozzarella, 1 cup of grated Parmesan, eggs, and salt and pepper. Combine ricotta, 1 cup Parmesan, mozzarella, eggs, basil, parsley, and salt and pepper; set aside.
    Stir the filling together until combined.


  • In a 9x13-inch baking dish, spread 1 ½ cups of sauce on the bottom.
    Pour sauce into the bottom of a 9x13-inch pan.
  • Using a spoon, spoon the cheese filling into a cooled manicotti and arrange in baking dish. Repeat with remaining manicotti.
    Nestle the manicotti into the baking dish.
  • Next, completely cover manicotti with remaining sauce.
    Cover the manicotti with the remaining sauce.


  • Cover baking dish with foil and bake for 40 minutes, or until bubbling.
  • Remove baking dish from the oven, and adjust the oven rack to the highest position. Close oven and preheat the broiler.
  • Top manicotti evenly with 1 cup of grated Parmesan cheese and 1/2 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese.
    Sprinkle cheese on top and broil until golden brown.
  • Place manicotti under the broiler and keep a watchful eye as the cheese broils for about 2-4 minutes. Remove the manicotti from the oven once the cheese is melted and is spotty brown.
    The manicotti right out of the oven.
  • Cool manicotti for 15 minutes.


  • Garnish with chopped fresh basil and parsley and serve with additional Parmesan cheese.
    Close up picture of baked manicotti in the baking dish.


Serving: 2manicotti | Calories: 471kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 122mg | Sodium: 939mg | Potassium: 439mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 1083IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 635mg | Iron: 2mg

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Baked Three Cheese Manicotti with Text Overlay for Pinterest

Classic Italian recipe for Baked Three Cheese Manicotti


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Recipe Rating


  1. This cheese manicotti is one of our favorite comfort foods. Pasta and cheese, what’s not to love? Yummy!!

  2. Jennifer Q says:

    YUM! Cheese manicotti is a family favorite at our house. I’m really glad to see Hunt’s offering San Marzanos too!

  3. One of my comfort food with three kind of cheeses. Sigh, I’m in love. 🙂

  4. Family favorite right here!! This is definitely a recipe to save and it does freeze well! Thanks for sharing all the tips.

  5. You had me at three cheese. This looks totally comforting.

  6. Kelly Anthony says:

    I absolutely LOVE Baked Manicotti and I never think to make it at home! I’ve never seen it look this good and it is absolutely going on our must-make dinner list 🙂 Can’t wait to try out that tomato sauce, too!

  7. Anything with three different types of cheese is a favorite of mine! So flavorful and delicious!