Comforting vegan spinach and ricotta cannelloni. Cannelloni shells are stuffed with a homemade vegan cashew ricotta and spinach filling. Smothered in a simple tomato sauce and topped with vegan mozzarella!
It’s one of the greatest pasta dishes and makes for a great weeknight meal to share with friends and family.
Similar to lasagne this cannelloni includes a simple garlicky tomato sauce and is topped with cheese that is baked to melty perfection.
To make this vegan we are making a simple cashew ricotta. It only requires a few ingredients and is creamy, nutty and cheesy.
Cannelloni may take a bit of extra time and love but the results are so worth it!
What you’ll need for vegan spinach and ricotta cannelloni:
- Silken tofu
- Nutritional yeast
- Salt and pepper
- Vegan cheddar
- Plant milk (I use oat)
- Ground nutmeg
- Cannelloni tubes
- Vegan mozzarella
Tomato sauce (optional, you can use shop bought):
- Chopped tomatoes
- Balsamic vinegar
Whether you make the tomato sauce or not is up to you. If you want to save time you can use a shop bought tomato sauce/passata. For me, homemade is always better so I make a simple garlic and onion tomato pasta sauce.
How to make vegan spinach and ricotta cannelloni:
Start by making the vegan ricotta. Add cashews to a bowl, cover with boiled water and leave to soak for 20-30 minutes to soften.
Then drain and add to the food processor with silken tofu, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, plant milk, salt and pepper.
Blend until smooth, it may take 1-2 minutes. Scrape down the sides a couple of times.
Wilt spinach on a frying pan with a splash of water and squeeze out any excess water.
Add to the food processor along with the vegan cheddar and ground nutmeg. Blend until the spinach is finely chopped, it won’t take long.
If you’re making the tomato sauce, do this now. Fry diced onion until translucent and soft. Add garlic, chopped tomatoes, water and balsamic vinegar. Let simmer for 10-15 minutes until thickened.
Season with salt and pepper. Spoon a few tablespoons of the sauce onto a bottom of a rectangular oven dish.
Spoon the filling into a piping bag, take a cannelloni tube at a time and squeeze until stuffed.
Add to the oven dish, and repeat until all the mixture has gone. It will fill around 16 tubes.
Pour over the remaining tomato sauce, top with vegan cheese and pop into the oven for 25-30 minutes!
How to fill cannelloni tubes:
The easiest way to do this is using a piping bag. If you don’t have one, use a zip log/freezer bag and snip the corner off.
Stand the cannelloni tubes upright with one hand whilst squeezing the mixture into the tube with the other.
Using a spoon/knife is more fiddly and will take you longer, so I would avoid this method if you can.
Make sure each tube is stuffed well. Flip it over to fill the other end if you need to.
What to serve with this vegan cannelloni:
- A side salad – lots of leafy greens with a creamy caesar dressing
- Roasted/sauteed vegetables – any and all!
- Garlic bread – for all the carbs!
For more pasta recipes you may enjoy these:
As always if you make this vegan spinach and ricotta cannelloni be sure to leave me a comment, rate this recipe and tag me on Instagram. I love seeing all your photos of my recipe recreations!
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- 225g / 1.5 cups cashews
- 150g / 5.3 oz silken tofu
- 60ml / 1/4 cup unsweetened plant milk (oat, almond, soya)
- 4 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 lemon
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 tsp salt
- 400g / 14 oz fresh spinach
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 50g / 1.8 oz vegan cheddar, grated
Sauce (optional, you can use shop bought)
- 1 red onion
- 3 garlic cloves
- 2 tins / 800g chopped tomates
- 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp mixed dried herbs
- 16-18 cannelloni tubes
- 150g / 5.3oz vegan mozzarella, grated
- Fresh basil
- Make the cashew ricotta. Place cashews in a bowl, top with boiled water and leave to soak for 20-30 minutes to soften. Pre heat oven to 200C/400F.
- Start the tomato sauce (skip this step if using shop bought). Dice onion and fry with a tbsp of oil on medium heat until soft. Add crushed garlic, chopped tomatoes, 200ml water (half fill one of the empty tins) and balsamic. Season with salt and pepper and bring to a gentle simmer. Simmer for 15-20 minutes until thickened.
- Drain the cashews and place in a food processor with remaining ricotta ingredients. Blend for 1-2 minutes until smooth. You may need to scrape down the sides a couple of times.
- Wilt spinach in a frying pan or in boiled water. Squeeze out excess water then add to the food processor with nutmeg and grated vegan cheddar. Blend again until the spinach is finely chopped, about 5-10 seconds.
- Spoon a few tablespoons of the tomato sauce into the bottom of a rectangular oven dish. Fill piping bag (or zip lock bag with the corner snipped off) with the spinach and ricotta filling. With one hand hold a cannelloni tube and with the other squeeze the filling in. Make sure they are well stuffed, it doesn't matter if they overflow a bit.
- Place into the oven dish and repeat until all the tubes are full and the mixture is used. Pour over the remaining tomato sauce and then top with grated vegan mozzarella.
- Place into the oven for 25-30 minutes until the pasta is cooked through and the top is bubbling. If it's browning too quickly pop some tin foil over the top.
You can sub the tomato sauce for shop bought (a 500g jar).
I use voilife mature cheddar cheese and bute island mozzarella sheese.
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