Ok, here you go ladies ~ Super Easy Crock Pot Lasagna for those of you that have asked!! This is great for those of you with big families, those that work, those that just don’t have much time during the day (like me), all you crazy, busy mamas!!
To start with, I am not a big ‘ingredient follower’ or ‘instruction follower’ ~ I was always a bit rebellious when it came to bosses or having people telling me what to do while growing up. And that rebellion has carried over into my cooking, gladly and sadly. Sometimes my food doesn’t come out as planned, but more often than not, it comes out absolutely delicious because I love to add an extra ingredient here and there.
So play with this recipe and make it your own!! I have a 5 quart crock pot – so add and subtract for different sized crock pots.
- 1.5 to 2 lbs. of ground beef or turkey (I have done both, and ground beef adds so much more flavor and texture to the lasagna – you can also add a bit of ground sausage to add some ‘zing’)
- 16 oz. of mozzarella cheese (you may use less than this, depends on how much you like cheese)
- 1 jar of spaghetti sauce – whatever flavor you like
- 1 box of lasagna noodles (Do NOT use the ‘no boil’ noodles, get regular noodles. I use the Healthy Harvest whole wheat noodles because they are healthier) You will not use the entire box.
- 1 24 oz. container of cottage cheese OR Ricotta cheese, whichever you prefer. They are both scrumptious!!!!!
- a bit of parmesan cheese
- a bit of oregano
- If you want to add vegetables, go for it!!!!! I want to try a bit of spinach next time I make it ~ but I haven’t been brave enough to slip it in there. I am afraid that my hubby will notice =)
- Brown ground beef/turkey with a few seasonings of your choice. I use worcestershire and garlic. Do not brown meat completely. It will finish browning in crock pot and will be more tender if you don’t over cook. Drain.
- start your layers and layer everything 2 times:
- put a layer of noodles on the bottom of crock pot. You will have to break noodles to fit.
- layer of meat (half of what you cooked)
- layer of cottage cheese (half the container) or Ricotta
- Layer of sauce (half the jar)
- Layer of shredded mozzarella cheese
- sprinkle oregano and parmesan
- layer of noodles again
- layer of Meat again
- …….and so on – exactly the same.
Cook on High for 3 hours or Low for 4 to 5 hours. Cooking time will vary depending on your crock pot. But when it starts to get a bit dark and crusty around the edges and the top is starting to brown, it is done!!! I have noticed that it is a bit watery when you first cut into it, but as it cools, it thickens. And left-overs are scrumptious.