- 1 lb. 93% lean ground beef
- 1 medium onion (chopped)
- 2 tsp. Italian Seasoning
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 64 oz. of spaghetti sauce (any kind)
- 15 oz. ricotta cheese
- 2 c. shredded mozzarella
- 1 egg
- 1 c. grated parmesan cheese
- 16 oz. uncooked ziti noodles
Pin ItI recently had family in town and treated them to this delicious Slow Cooker Baked Ziti.
Growing up, my mom always made lasagna for family gatherings but over the years, I have grown to enjoy Baked Ziti more than Lasagna. So I guess you could say I am building upon my mom’s tradition and creating my own. :-)
What is your “go to” meal when you have company or a family gathering? Please share in the comments section below – I love to hear from you!
- Cook ground beef and onion in a large skillet. Crumble the beef as you cook it – until it’s no longer pink.
- Mix in Italian Seasoning, Salt, and the sauce and set aside.
- In a separate bowl, combine 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese, all the ricotta and all of the parmesan cheese with 1 egg. (the egg isn’t a must if you don’t have any – although it will make the cheese creamier/easier to spread)
- SPRAY your 6 quart slow cooker with non-stick spray or use a slow cooker liner (trust me!)
- Layer ingredients:
Layer 1: (Note: Step 1 and 2 combined make the sauce mix) Pour in 2 & 1/2 cups of sauce mix and spread evenly.
Layer 2: Sprinkle 2 cups of ziti noodles (uncooked) over the sauce mix.
Layer 3: Add half of the cheese mixture – drop in balls then carefully spread over noodles.
Layer 4: Pour in 2 & 1/2 cups of sauce mix and spread evenly.
Layer 5: Sprinkle the rest of the ziti noodles over the sauce mix.
Layer 6: Add the other half of the cheese mixture – Again, drop in balls then carefully spread over noodles.
Layer 7: Pour in the remaining sauce mix and be sure to cover all the ingredients.
Cover & Crock on Low for 4 hours.
About 10 minutes before serving, sprinkle with the remaining mozzarella cheese. Serve after the cheese is melted.
* A tip on this recipe - The key is making sure you have enough sauce – if you are short, halve the recipe – without enough sauce this dish will be too dry!
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