Slow Cooker Lasagna Recipe
Growing up, my mother would strive to make each and every birthday special for my sister and myself. On your birthday, you could pick any dinner you want, and Mama would prepare it for the Birthday Girl. My birthday dinner was always lasagna. This was probably because the classic dish was not something Mama prepared very often. And, it can be a pricey dish. However, it feeds a lot of hungry folks, so it is a favorite in many families. I decided to recreate my favorite lasagna recipe.
When I was little, no one in my family cooked with ricotta cheese. I’m not even sure if the local grocery store even carried it. So, my mama baked her signature lasagna using cottage cheese instead of ricotta. Cottage cheese is less expensive than ricotta and everyone in my family loved cottage cheese as a side dish. Perfect with jello, yummy on top of green salad, excellent as a dip for carrots and cucumber strips, a creamy topping for saltines, delicious with fruit and jam, we really do love cottage cheese. So, this calcium-rich, dairy staple was the natural choice for the cheesy lasagna filling. Now, I know you Italians are muttering under your breath that ricotta is the only cheese for classic lasagna, and I don’t disagree. But, I will tell you that cottage cheese works, and it is the economical cheese that my family has always used.
I decided to try my favorite lasagna in the slow cooker and I wanted to make it even more special, so I tried the Tuscan Inspired sauce by Bertolli. This recipe fed four adults and three hungry children. So, half of it could easily be frozen after a family of four has enjoyed it for supper.
Slow Cooker Lasagna Recipe
1 lb ground beef
½ lb Italian sausage
One medium onion, chopped
Four garlic cloves, minced
5 c. Bertolli pasta sauce (Tomato Basil)
1/4 c. red wine
15 oz. Cottage cheese
One egg, beaten
½ t. salt
1/4 t. fresh ground black pepper
2 T fresh chopped parsley
1/4 c. Parmesan cheese, divided
2 c. mozzarella cheese, divided
9-10 lasagna noodles, uncooked
Brown beef and sausage in the Dutch oven; drain.
Return browned meats to pot and stir in onion, garlic (I cheat and use paste), pepper, and red wine.
Combine cottage cheese, eggs, salt and 2 T Parmesan and 1 ½ c. Mozzarella cheese.
Spoon 1 c. Meat sauce into slow cooker;
Top with three lasagna noodles, broken to fit.
Top noodles with 1/3 of cheese mixture and cover with 2 c. Meat sauce.
Continue layering noodles, cheese mixture, and 2 c. Meat sauce ending with sauce
Cover and cook on low 4-6 hours or until liquid is absorbed.
Sprinkle with remaining cheeses and let stand, covered, 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.
Serve and Enjoy!
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Bertolli®. The opinions and text are all mine.