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  • Writer's pictureEmily Tillmann

Cheater's Manicotti

Made, written & photographed by the creators of the Point

This is a great recipe if you're the type of person who loves a good pasta, but doesn't have the time to make everything from scratch.

The two secret "cheater" ingredients? Jarred Spaghetti Sauce and Mozzarella String Cheese.

You could make it even easier and omit the ground beef! This is a great after school, work, activities dinner!


Cheater's Manicotti

serves 4 to 6

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes


  • 1 - 8oz package manicotti pasta

  • 1 pound ground beef

  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion

  • 1 garlic clove, minced

  • 1 24 oz jar spaghetti sauce

  • 12 sticks mozzarella string cheese

  • 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

  • grated Parmesan cheese

  • chopped basil


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Set aside an ungreased 9x13 baking dish.

  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook your pasta according to the package directions. Once cooked, drain and set aside.

  3. While your pasta cooks, add your ground beef and onion to a large skillet over medium heat. Cook until meat is no longer pink and onions turn translucent. Make sure to break up the beef as much as possible.

  4. Add in your garlic clove and cook for another one or two minutes. Drain your meat if there is extra moisture.

  5. Stir in 24oz jar of spaghetti sauce (we used tomato basil). And cook for one or two minutes to heat sauce.

  6. Spread half of your meat sauce into your 9x13 baking dish.

  7. Stuff each manicotti shell with 1 or 2 pieces of string cheese. Place in rows in your prepared dish. Top with remaining meat sauce.

  8. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

  9. After the first round is done, remove the aluminum foil and top with 1 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese. Return to oven for 5 to 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted.

  10. Top with grated parmesan and basil. Serve hot with garlic bread!


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Hi, thanks for stopping by!

I'm Emily, a home cook based in Wisconsin. For me, the best part about cooking is trying new dishes with new flavors and ingredients.

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