Slow cooker lasagna is the perfect meal to feed a crowd with only 15 MINUTES of prep! This is the EASIEST way to make lasagna and it tastes as good as oven-baked lasagna. Maybe even better!
Our crockpot lasagna cooks on its own– just pop it in the crockpot and walk away for a beautiful lasagna with beef and Italian sausage sauce and three types of cheese with no fuss.
Add the ingredients to the pot in the morning, and come home to a perfect home-cooked meal your family will love!
The best part about this easy lasagna recipe is that it only requires 15 minutes of prep time. No boiling noodles and no long simmer for the tomato sauce. It’s the easiest lasagna recipe you will ever make.
The flavors in this easy meat lasagna recipe marinate and build all day long as it cooks in the crockpot.
You won’t even have to call the family to dinner! The wonderful smell of this cheesy lasagna recipe will do it for you. Crockpot Lasagna is perfect for an easy weeknight dinner or slow cooker Sunday supper!
Ingredients for Lasagna
Our easy crockpot lasagna requires just a few simple ingredients, similar to a traditional lasagna recipe. If you’ve ever wondered how to make meat lasagna simply, this is how! Here is all you need to make the best lasagna recipe ever:
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound ground beef (we recommend 80/20 blend)
- 1 pound ground mild Italian sausage (if you can’t find ground sausage, use sausage links and remove the casing from the sausage)
- 1 medium onion, chopped very fine
- 2 garlic cloves, minced (or 1 teaspoon of minced garlic)
- 8 cups of marinara sauce
- 32 ounces of ricotta cheese
- 3 eggs
- 1/4 cup of parsley, very finely chopped (optional)
- 1 pound mozzarella cheese, shredded (large shred, not fine shred)
- 1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 1 pound lasagna noodles, uncooked
- salt and pepper to taste
What’s the best cheese for lasagna?
We use three types of cheese in our slow cooker lasagna, including a lightly seasoned ricotta mixed with eggs, shredded mozzarella, and grated Parmesan.
Be sure to set aside mozzarella and Parmesan for the topping. Once the lasagna has finished slow cooking, top it with the remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
Cover, and cook for another 10 minutes in the slow cooker to allow the mozzarella to melt. This ensures a cheesy lasagna recipe everyone will love!
How to Cook Lasagna in the Crockpot
This easy Italian slow cooker recipe is created by layering uncooked lasagna noodles with a meat sauce and three types of cheese.
We are going to show you how to make lasagna the easy way, step by step. Once you try this simple lasagna, this will be your favorite way to make it!
How to Make Meat Sauce
- Lightly grease the interior of a large slow cooker.
- In a large saucepan over medium heat, slowly cook the onion until lightly brown, continuously stirring.
- Add the garlic and continue to stir until browned,
- Add the ground beef and sausage and cook while breaking up the pieces with a wooden spoon, until browned. Stir in the onion and garlic.
- Stir the marinara sauce into the cooked meat.
- Season with salt and pepper and remove from heat. This is your lasagna meat sauce.
How to Cook Lasagna Noodles Al Dente
- Boil 6 qt. of water with 2 tablespoons of salt in a large pot over heat set to high.
- Carefully add lasagna noodles one at a time to the bubbling water. This will prevent the noodles from sticking. DO NOT add oil to the water.
- Stir the noodles and allow the water to return to a boil for approximately 7 to 8 minutes uncovered.
- Drain the noodles in a colander. Lay the noodles flat on a cutting board or try so they do not stick together. Immediately start layering the lasagna.
How to Layer Lasagna
- You will need a large oval crockpot for this recipe. If you make 1/2 the recipe, you can use a small round slow cooker.
- In a medium bowl, combine ricotta cheese, the eggs, 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese, parsley (optional), and salt and pepper to taste.
- Cover the bottom of the greased slow cooker with 1 cup of the meat sauce.
- Top with a layer of lasagna noodle.
- Cover with 1/4 of the ricotta mixture. Sprinkle with approximately 1/4 of the mozzarella cheese and Parmesan.
- Repeat the layers again: sauce, noodles, ricotta, mozzarella, and Parmesan.
- Repeat the layers a fourth time, then, for the final layer, top the cheese with one last layer of noodles and cover with about 1 cup of the meat sauce.
- Top with the reserved mozzarella and parmesan cheese.
Cooking Lasagna in a Slow Cooker
Place the slow cooker on low for approximately 6 hours and bake covered. Once the top cheese is bubbling, switch the slow cooker to warm for approximately 1 hour or until ready to serve.
Doing so, will give the noodles and cheese time to firm up a bit and will enable you to serve the lasagna without it being burning hot.
Once ready to serve, cut the lasagna into squares with a knife and use a metal serving spatula to serve.
Tips for Making Homemade Lasagna
- How much salt and pepper you add to the meat sauce will depend on how much is in the marinara sauce. Adjust the seasonings as needed.
- Set aside mozzarella and Parmesan for the topping. Once the lasagna has finished slow cooking, top it with the remaining mozzarella and Parmesan. Cover, and cook for another 10 minutes in the slow cooker to allow the mozzarella to melt.
- Save time by cooking the meat the night before and refrigerating until ready to assemble the lasagna.
- Be sure to drain any fat from the sausage and ground beef that may have accumulated in the pan before adding the marinara sauce and water.
- Make sure to let the lasagna rest for 15-20 minutes before serving. This will ensure the lasagna doesn’t fall apart.
Do you have to cook the meat before adding to the slow cooker?
Yes. The meat needs to be cooked on the stove-top before layering with the noodles and cheese in the slow cooker.
You can save time on the day of serving the Italian lasagna by cooking the meat the night before and refrigerating until needed. Be sure to drain any fat that may have accumulated in the pan before adding the marinara sauce and water.
Recipe Tip: We love to use a combination of ground beef and crumbled mild Italian sausage for personal taste, but you can also use purely ground beef or even ground turkey for a lighter option.
Best Lasagna Recipes
If you prefer an alternative way to cook lasagna rather than using your slow cooker, check out our other favorite lasagna recipes!
- Cast Iron Skillet Lasagna
- Healthy Make Ahead Lasagna
- Mexican Lasagna with Corn Tortillas
- Lasagna for Two
The Best Slow Cooker Recipes
- Easy Slow Cooker Roast Beef Recipe
- Add a Spanish flair to your dinner table with our Slow Cooker Carne Picada!
- Slow Cooker Creole Chicken Chicken and Sausage
- Slow Cooker Cinnamon Almonds
Did you try this easy lasagna recipe? We would love to know what you think! Let us know in the comments below and with a rating.
Slow Cooker Lasagna
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 pound Italian sausage ,removed from casing
- 1 medium onion ,finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic ,minced
- 50 ounces marinara sauce ,2 (25 ounce) jars of favorite store-bought or homemade
- 2 cups water
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 32 ounces ricotta cheese
- 1/2 cup freshly chopped parsley ,plus more for topping
- 1 pound low-moisture mozzarella ,shredded, set aside 1/3 cup for topping
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese ,set aside 3 tablespoons for topping
- 1 pound uncooked lasagne noodles
- Lightly grease the interior of a large slow cooker.
- In a large pan, drizzle olive oil over medium heat. Crumble in the ground beef and sausage and cook, breaking up the pieces with a wooden spoon, until browned. Stir in the onion and garlic. Continue to cook until the onions have softened. Discard any excess grease.
- Stir the marinara sauce and water into the cooked meat. Season with salt and pepper and remove from heat.
- In a medium bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, parsley, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Cover the bottom of the greased slow cooker with 2 cups of the meat sauce. Top with a layer of lasagna noodles, breaking them as needed to fit the entire surface. Cover with 1/3rd of the ricotta mixture. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and Parmesan. Repeat the layers again: sauce, noodles, ricotta, mozzarella, and Parmesan. Repeat the layers a third time, then for the final layer top the cheese with one last layer of noodles and cover with about 1 1/2 cups of the meat sauce.
- Set the slow cooker to high and cook for 3-4 hours, until the mixture is bubbly and the noodles have cooked through. The lasagna can also cook on low for 6-8 hours. At the end of cooking, add a last sprinkling of mozzarella and Parmesan, cover, and cook for another 10 minutes to melt the cheese.
- Remove from heat and allow the lasagna to rest 15-20 minutes before slicing and serving.
- Save time by preparing the meat for the lasagna ahead of time. Make sure to drain any excess fat before cooking into the lasagna.
This post was updated on November 17, 2019.
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