Our family LOVES Italian food. Pasta and pizza are our go-to dishes, no matter the season. This delicious manicotti takes a little more time and preparation than simple spaghetti or pizza, but it is well worth the effort! It’s also highly customizable – make it vegan by replacing the cheese with tofu, or gluten-free by replacing the manicotti noodles with thinly sliced squash or zucchini.

Tomato Sauce:

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 medium onions
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 4 cups tomatoes
  • 1 cup red wine (we use Stone Cottage Cellars Merlot)
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil
  • 2 Tbsp oregano, dried or fresh
  • 1 Tbsp fennel seed, freshly ground
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

In a medium pot, sauté onions and garlic in olive oil until golden brown. Add remaining ingredients and boil for 10-15 minutes. Add 1 cup water before making manicotti.


  • 8 oz ricotta cheese (or firm tofu, drained and crumbled)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced fine
  • 2 Tbsp onion, minced very fine
  • 1/4 cup basil, chopped fine
  • 2 Tbsp parsley, chopped fine
  • 1 tsp fennel seed, ground fine
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 package manicotti noodles (0r large shells)
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large mixing bowl, combine ricotta, garlic, onion, basil, parsley, fennel, salt and pepper. Mix well (we find it easiest to roll up our sleeves and use our hands). Stuff manicotti noodles with cheese mixture.

Spread 1/2 cup tomato sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Arrange stuffed manicotti in the pan, cover with 1-2 cups tomato sauce, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake in the oven at 350 for 30 minutes. Allow to cool before serving with Stone Cottage Cellars Merlot.