2016 is the year I fell back in love with my slow cooker, apparently. This was waaaay better than I thought it would be. Next time I’d add at least another layer of pasta, because this was on the saucy side. But it was delicously, deliciously saucy. It feeds a crowd and makes pretty great leftovers, so next time I’m doing family dinner and don’t want to be in the kitchen forever, I’m making this. I kind of want to make it again right now…who’s around for dinner?

This was another Pinterest find, from Spicy Southern Kitchen. And they got it from Williams Sonoma, so technically this is Williams Sonoma’s Slow Cooker Lasagna.

1 Tbs. olive oil
2 lb. Italian sausage, casings removed
2 jars (each 24 oz.) tomato sauce
2 cups water
1 lb. whole-milk ricotta cheese
2 Tbs. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
18 ruffle-edged lasagna noodles (not no-boil noodles)
1 1/2 lb. mozzarella cheese, grated
2 oz. Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, finely grated
Thinly sliced fresh basil for garnish

In the stovetop-safe insert of slow cooker (or, in my case, just a regular frying pan) warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook, breaking up any large chunks with a wooden spoon, until the meat is browned, 10 to 12 minutes.

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Add the tomato sauce and water and bring to a simmer.

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Transfer the sauce to a large bowl.

In another bowl, stir together the ricotta, parsley, salt and pepper. Set aside.

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Spread a thin layer of the sauce on the bottom of the slow-cooker insert. Cover the sauce with a single layer of uncooked lasagna noodles (about 3-4), breaking the noodles as needed to fit. Spread about 1/3 cup of the ricotta mixture over the noodles.

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Top with about 2 cups of the sauce, then sprinkle with about 1 cup of the mozzarella and 1/4 cup of the Parmigiano-Reggiano. Repeat the layering 4 more times, starting with the noodles. **Note to myself, I will squeeze at least one more layer of noodles in there next time.

Top the whole concoction with “a nice amount of mozzarella.” That’s a Spicy Southern Kitchen recipe note that I could not approve of more.

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Transfer the insert to the slow-cooker base, cover and cook on low according to the manufacturer’s instructions until the noodles are tender and cooked through, about 4 hours.

Position a rack in the center of an oven and preheat to broil. **I actually didn’t do the broiler step because Adam was pacing the floor ready to devour this, the house smelled so good.

Transfer the slow-cooker insert to the oven and broil until the cheese is bubbly and golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Let the lasagna rest for 20 minutes before serving. Garnish with basil and serve immediately. Serves 12.

slow cooker lasagna