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This recipe won a blue ribbon at the State Fair of Texas a couple of years ago. It is absolutely wonderful and quite easy to prepare and even easier to eat. Chef: Ronda Porter - State Fair of Texas Blue Ribbon Winner
- 226.79 g packagemanicotti pasta shells
- 946.36 ml cooked chicken, finely chopped
- 2 (453.59 g) container chive & onion cream cheese
- 283.49 g package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well drained
- 59.14 ml tastefully simple dried tomato & garlic pesto sauce (I could not find this combo, so I bought Sun Dried Tomato Pesto and added minced garlic to make my o)
- 236.59 ml shredded mozzarella cheese, for mixture
- 236.59 ml shredded mozzarella cheese, for topping
- 2 (1474.17 g) jar pasta sauce (use 1 jar for each dish)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Cook pasta according to package directions and drain. Set aside.
- Mix together chicken, cream cheese, spinach, Tastefully Simple Dried Tomato & Garlic Pesto and one cup mozzarella cheese.
- Pour 1/3 jar pasta sauce in bottom of baking dish.
- Cut manicotti tubes down one side and spoon 1/2 cup chicken mixture into each shell.
- Roll and place into 11 x 7 inch glass baking dish.
- Pour remaining jar of pasta sauce over the top taking care to cover the pasta.
- Sprinkle ½ cup cheese on top and bake for 30 minutes.
- Makes two casseroles. Freezes well.
- Optionally you could replace the chicken with Italian sausage.
- I personally use beer can chicken which has a smokey flavor.
The filling was tasty. Splitting the tubes really made this one easy to deal with. I did add some garlic, but that is a regular add-in for me.