Slow Cooker Lasagna Recipe

Slow Cooker Lasagna Recipe

Slow Cooker Lasagna

Slow Cooker Lasagna is juicy, cheesy, beefy, and tastes just as good as a classic lasagna, but easier! There is no need to pre-cook noodles, and crockpot lasagna can be assembled ahead perfect for busy nights.

Slow Cooker Lasagna Recipe

Lasagna in the slow cooker is also a brilliant Sunday dish; assemble it a day ahead, start it before church, and have it ready when you get home. It works perfectly and everyone in my family (young and old-ish) was completely smitten with this crockpot lasagna. This is a KEEPER!!

Notes on Ingredients for Crock Pot Lasagna:

  • The best beef for lasagna is NOT LEAN. Use ground beef with about 20% fat content.
  • Red wine adds incredible flavor but you can sub with beef broth.
  • A high-quality store-bought marinara will work or use homemade marinara
  • Use regular uncooked lasagna noodles (NOT “oven-ready). We have tested this with Gluten-Free lasagna noodles but they did soften considerably more than traditional noodles.
  • This lasagna combines 3 kinds of cheese. The cottage cheese might surprise you but takes the cheese sauce to the next level.
  • A little water is added to help with hot spots and to cook more evenly. If your crockpot is prone to hot spots, consider using a slow cooker liner or a different slow cooker (Amazon affiliate links).

How to Make Crockpot Lasagna:

  1. In a large deep pan over medium heat, saute the ground beef and onion for 5 min or until no longer pink, breaking it up with your spatula. Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute add 1/4 cup red wine and simmer until nearly evaporated (5 min).

     

  2. Add 3 cups marinara, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper, 1/4 tsp thyme, 1/2 tsp sugar, and 2 Tbsp chopped parsley. Mix well, cover, and simmer for 5 min while you stir together your cheese sauce.

     

  3. For the cheese sauce: In a medium bowl, combine 15 oz ricotta, 16 oz cottage cheese (un-drained), 1 large egg, 1 cup mozzarella cheese, and 2 Tbsp parsley. Mix well.

     

  4. Lightly oil your slow cooker. Spread 1 cup marinara on the bottom then add 3 noodles, breaking to fit. Top with 1/3 of the Meat Sauce, sprinkle on 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese, then spread with 1/2 of your cheese sauce and repeat until you have 3 layers of noodles. Top with remaining meat sauce, 3/4 cup mozzarella and pour 1/2 cup water around the edges, allowing some of it to go down the side of the dish into the lasagna.

     

  5. Cover and cook on LOW 3 1/2 to 4 hours**. If desired, soak up any excess oil with a paper towel then sprinkle on the remaining 3/4 cup mozzarella, cover and cook for 10 minutes to melt the cheese.

     

  6. Let the lasagna rest 15 minutes before serving, otherwise, it will be blazing hot and too loose to serve.

Crockpot Lasagna Layers

Here is a visual reference on how to assemble a slow cooker lasagna in order of adding to the crockpot:

  • 1 cup marinara
  • 3 noodles (broken to fit)
  • 1/3 of the meat sauce
  • 3/4 cup grated mozzarella
  • 1/2 ricotta cheese sauce
  • 3 noodles
  • 1/3 meat sauce
  • 3/4 cup of grated mozzarella
  • 1/2 ricotta cheese sauce
  • 3 noodles
  • 1/3 meat sauce
  • 3/4 cup of grated mozzarella (refrigerate remaining cheese)
  • After 4 hours, top with 3/4 cup of grated mozzarella

 

Slow Cooker Lasagna Recipe

You'll make this slow cooker lasagna again and again! So saucy and cheesy! An easy make-ahead crockpot lasagna – the noodles cook right in the crockpot! Can be fully assembled and refrigerated overnight and slow cooked the next day per step #5.

For the Meat Sauce

  • 1 lb ground beef (80/20 fat content)
  • 1 small onion finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves pressed
  • 1/4 cup red wine or beef broth
  • 32 oz marinara sauce
  • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp granulated sugar
  • 4 Tbsp fresh parsley chopped and divided

For the Cheese Sauce:

  • 15 oz reduced fat ricotta cheese
  • 16 oz low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 lb mozzarella cheese (4 cups shredded), divided

For Assembling Lasagna:

  • 9 lasagna noodles uncooked, NOT "oven-ready"
  • 1/2 cup water
  1. In a large deep pan over medium heat, combine ground beef and onion. Cook, breaking up meat with a spatula until no longer pink (5 min). Add garlic and sauté 1 to 2 mins. Add 1/4 cup red wine and simmer until nearly evaporated (5 min).

  2. Add 3 cups marinara, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper, 1/4 tsp thyme, 1/2 tsp sugar and 2 Tbsp chopped parsley. Mix well, cover and simmer 5 min.:

  3. Make the cheese sauce: In a medium bowl, combine: 15 oz ricotta, 16 oz cottage cheese, 1 large egg, 1 cup mozzarella cheese, and 2 Tbsp parsley. Mix well.

  4. Lightly oil slow cooker. Spread 1 cup marinara sauce on the bottom then top with 3 noodles, breaking them to fit. Top with 1/3 of the Meat Sauce, sprinkle with 3/4 cup of your mozzarella cheese, then spread the top with 1/2 of your ricotta cheese mixture and repeat until you have 3 layers of noodles. Top the third layer of noodles with remaining meat sauce, 3/4 cup mozzarella and pour 1/2 cup water around the edges, allowing some of it to go down the side of the dish into lasagna.

  5. Cover and cook on LOW 3 1/2 to 4 hours** then top with reserved mozzarella, cover and cook 10 mins or until cheese melts. Let the lasagna rest 15 mins for easier serving.

*Important: Do not cook on high!
**Cook 3 1/2 hours on low if slow cooking right away and 4 hours on low if slow cooking after having the lasagna assembled and refrigerated overnight.

Main Course
Italian
crockpot lasagna, slow cooker lasagna

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