I love lasagna! Anytime you can combine everything into one dish and it hits pretty much every food group, then I’m a happy girl. But oven-baked lasagna takes way too much work… all the boiling and layering and smoothing and baking and spilling, then oven cleaning… I would rather just order lasagna from a nice little Italian restaurant than go through this whole charade.
So after doing a little research, I’ve figured out that crock pot lasagna is very doable. Not only can you assemble it in the pot, but I am convinced that most of the cooking should take place in the pot, too. This dish is easy to cook, doesn’t take more than an afternoon to finish and you can even freeze the leftovers for another night. That is, if there are any leftovers!
I hope you enjoy this take on one of my favorites. Enjoy!
1 12 oz. box of lasagna noodles, uncooked
1 15 oz. container ricotta cheese
2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 24 oz. container chunky spaghetti sauce
2 zucchinis, sliced thick
2 c. fresh spinach leaves
1/2 c. fresh basil leaves
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 t. black pepper
1 t. dried oregano
3/4 c. water
1/2 c. parmesan cheese
This recipe is best made in an oval-shaped crock pot; a round one will work, it just creates a very tall lasagna.
In a separate bowl, combine ricotta cheese, egg, garlic and seasonings. Pour 1 c. of spaghetti sauce into the pot and stir it around so it coats the bottom of the crock pot. Fill the sauce jar up with 1 c. water and shake it around– this watered down sauce helps the noodles soften more when cooking. Place first layer of 3-4 noodles in crock pot. Cover noodles with 1/2 of ricotta mixture. Lay zucchini slices on next, followed by another layer of 3-4 lasagna noodles. Add 1 c. spaghetti sauce and cover noodles with 1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese, spinach leaves, basil leaves and then the remaining ricotta mixture. Add final layer of noodles. Cover with remaining sauce and then sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese. Cook on low for 3 hours.
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Hi! We are gluten free and it’s hard to find lasagna noodles. I was going to try it with brown rice pasta on those layers where the lasagna noodles should go and make it more like a ziti… do you think I need to adjust the recipe at all for that? Thanks!
Good question! I haven’t used rice pasta before to know how quickly it turns to goo, but honestly– if I was going to make this gluten free, I would take advantage of sturdy vegetables and make bigger cuts of zucchini and yellow squash to use in place of the noodles. You could also add in layers of eggplant (cut long instead of into circles) to add more structure.
But if you want to experiment with the rice pasta, please let me know how it turns out!