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Gluten-free manicotti: Easy vegetarian eggplant recipes with spinach and cheese

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Gluten-free manicotti recipes typically combine a special kind of pasta plus the normal ingredients that you'd use to make this Italian dish. However, I've tried some of the gluten-free pastas on the market, and my tummy just doesn't like them very much. Fortunately, I found an easy baked manicotti recipe with spinach and cheese that uses eggplant in lieu of the pasta.

Need Some More Italian Meal Recipes? Read the Articles Below

About the Gluten-Free Manicotti With Spinach and Cheese

This is one of the best manicotti recipes I've tried, (and that's saying something since I used to work at the Boise Olive Garden as a server and trainer). The gluten-free manicotti in this recipe combines spinach, ricotta cheese, mozzarella, Parmesan and fresh basil to make an excellent easy vegetarian eggplant recipe.


  • 1 lb eggplant
  • 1½ c. ricotta cheese
  • ½ c. Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 c. grated mozzarella cheese
  • ¼ c. fresh basil leaves, shredded
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ c. fresh chopped spinach
  • 2 c. tomato sauce


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cut the eggplant into 1/4-inch slices. Do this lengthwise so that the eggplant can be rolled around the cheeses to form the manicotti tube. See photo if you're not sure.
  3. Treat the eggplant slices with salt. To do this, put into a strainer/ colander for 30 minutes after you've salted them.
  4. Combine the cheeses plus the chopped basil and spinach and olive oil in a medium-size bowl.
  5. Using a paper towel, pat the eggplant slices dry and then put them on a baking sheet for 15 minutes. This will make the eggplant soft enough to roll. Allow them slices to cool for several minutes.
  6. Add a large teaspoon of the cheese mixture to the middle of the eggplant. Do this lengthwise. Leave a border on the wide end (about 1-inch).
  7. Starting from the narrow end of the eggplant, roll the eggplant like you were rolling up a jelly or an egg roll.
  8. Put some tomato sauce in the bottom of a baking dish, arranging the gluten-free manicotti rolls so that they lay in the pan seam-side down. Make only one layer; don't stack them.
  9. Pour some more sauce over the top of the vegetarian manicottis and bake them for up to 30 minutes until they're heated all the way through.
  10. Use a spatula or pancake turner to put the manicottis on the plates and sprinkle basil and more mozzarella and Parmesan cheese on top.

Tips for the Gluten-Free Manicotti With Spinach and Cheese:

Garnish with fresh basil leaves.
Makes 4 to 5 manicottis.



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