Pip’s Beef Cannelloni

My children have never been particularly forthcoming with praise in regard to anything that requires cooking on a hob or in the oven. This Cannelloni, (I never knew how hard it was to spell this pesky word, 3 n’s and 2 l’s) brings out utterances of pure pleasure from them. Which is saying something, because they are usually monosyllabic until around 5 pm.

Drum roll…..


1 tablespoon of oil

400g beef mince

1 large onion

2 garlic cloves

2, 500g cartons or jars of passata

1 dessert spoon of sugar

dried cannelloni tubes to line your dish


50g butter or margarine

50 g plain flour

600ml milk

140g soft cheese with garlic and herbs

grated parmesan or cheese of choice

Modus Operandi

Fry the beef mince until brown, drain off the fat and set aside. Fry the chopped onions in the tablespoon of oil until soft and add the garlic after around 5 minutes, fry for half a minute and add the beef again. Add 1 and a half cartons of the passata, saving  the rest for later, then add the sugar. Mix well, season, and simmer gently for about 1 hour. The longer the better.

Melt the butter in a clean saucepan. Add the flour next and stir for around 20 seconds and gradually add the milk until you get a smooth thick sauce. This is a very tricky thing to do without getting lumps, so pour through a sieve if needed. Add the soft cheese and stir. Cover and leave at room temperature.

Assemblage can be viewed as therapeutic or laborious, depending on your mood.  Pour into a rectangular oven proof dish, the remaining 250g of passata so it covers with a thin layer over the bottom. Fill your cannelloni tubes with the meat mixture. I find using a teaspoon is adequate or a table knife. Whatever you decide to use, you will need a shed load of patience!

Lay the tubes on top of the passatta, then pour over your white sauce. Sprinkle with grated cheese and pop in the oven for 50 minutes at gas mark 6/200c.

You’ll probably have quite a bit of meat sauce left which you can freeze and use next time.


I am a mother of two children, and have had many experiences in my life that I have been through and had to overcome. I feel it would be beneficial (at least to me, and perhaps you) to share my experiences. I’d love to hear your comments and suggestions. x


    • Pip

      I agree. If I see a recipe with loads of ingredients listed, it puts me off. This is one of those recipes that I think needs to be attempted on a weekend when your off work. I just couldn’t be bothered in the week when I’ve been at work all day.

  • Vinn

    This must be a delish dish, as we are constantly watching reruns of : Everybody loves Raymond”; this is Raymond’s favorite. So looking at the recipe and procedures to try at home, with the “laborious” assembly (lol) probably I’ll head to a restaurant one of these days. Good thing, I had makaronia for lunch (baked macaroni, the Cypriot way).

    • Pip

      You know I’ve heard of that programme but never watched it. It’s so true about having the patience of a saint! Yes, head out and eat a cannelloni, made by someone else, and they can wash up too.

  • Charlotte

    This looks delicious! I love pasta but have never actually had cannelloni – I don’t know why I just never think to buy it! Will be adding this to my list of meal ideas!

    Charlotte x

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