I tried the great “slow cooker lasagna” experiment last week for my family, thinking that it would be fun to try but not something I would actually do in the future. Scratch that! I’m sold on this Slow Cooker Whole Wheat Spinach Lasagna!
Although I love those cute Spinach Lasagna Roll-Ups that I’ve made so many times before, I’m done with that time-intensive method. I’m moving on to this easy one. This slow cooker lasagna took no time at all to put together, especially since it’s meat-free and I didn’t have to cook the noodles in advance. Plus, it came out perfectly moist throughout. No more burnt top or edges or dried out lasagna. Hurrah!
The key to this Slow Cooker Whole Wheat Spinach Lasagna, though, is three-fold:
1 – Use LOTS of sauce. This recipe calls for 2 whole jars. You’ll feel like it’s too much, but trust me, it’s not. The noodles just soak it up while cooking and the whole thing is perfectly saucy.
2 – Do not overcook this! It takes about 3 hours on LOW. If you cook it much longer or at a higher temperatre than that, you’ll be left with burnt baby food at best.
3 – Spray a large slow cooker crock generously with cooking spray before layering in the ingredients. This will make for easy clean up. You can also buy the crock pot liners, which makes for ZERO clean up. You cook right in the liner.
Last thing to note: This feeds an army! Our family of five ate only half of it the first night and we have been eating leftovers all week. So I would say this could easily feed 8-10 adults.
Ok, really last thing to note: Slow Cooker Whole Wheat Spinach Lasagna would make a perfect make-ahead meal for a large group. Just put the casserole together ahead of time. Store the slow cooker crock in the fridge until you’re about 3 hours away from your dinner time. Then, start the slow cooker and let it do the work. Enjoy!
- 13-14 pieces (most of a 16 ounce package) uncooked whole wheat lasagna noodles
- 3 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded, divided (separate out 1 cup)
- 1 (15 ounce) container ricotta cheese
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons dried parsley flakes
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2-3 cups fresh spinach, finely chopped
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 (28 ounces) jars marinara sauce
- In a mixing bowl, stir together 2 cups mozzarella cheese, ricotta cheese, eggs, garlic, parsley, basil, pepper, salt, spinach, and Parmesan cheese.
- Generously coat the inside of the large slow cooker crock with cooking spray. This will help tremendously with clean up!
- Layer the lasagna in the slow cooker as follows. Remember to be generous with the sauce and use all of it!
- - SAUCE: Start by spreading a base layer of marinara sauce over the bottom.
- - NOODLES: Layer noodles next, breaking them apart as needed to fill in the gaps.
- - SAUCE: Spread another layer of sauce over the noodles.
- - CHEESE: Spread the ricotta cheese mixture over all the noodles.
- - REPEAT X2: Repeat the noodles/sauce/cheese layers two more times.
- Top the casserole with one last layer of noodles (so you'll have four noodle layers total), one last layer of sauce, and then end with the 1 cup of shredded mozzarella over the top. (Note: You will not have a ricotta cheese mixture layer for the top.)
- Cook on LOW for 3 hours. Do not overcook!