Anyone else get stressed when 4:00 rolls around and you still don’t know what’s for dinner? I know I do!There’s nothing better than knowing you’ve already taken care of dinner in your slow cooker when that time of day comes.
This recipe takes a few minutes of prep beforehand, and cooks up perfectly in your slow cooker. Best part about it? No boiling the noodles! That’s right, even those can be cooked in your slow cooker.
Supplies for making slow cooker baked ziti
This recipe makes enough to feed a large family! You can easily serve 6-8 people, but that means you’ll need a big slow cooker.
I’d recommend using nothing smaller than a 6qt slow cooker for this recipe. You can find the slow cooker we used HERE.
I used a large skillet to cook the turkey and mix the sauce for the ziti. If you don’t have a large skillet, you can always mix your sauce and turkey separately.
Using a large skillet saves some time and helps you avoid washing another dish. We used this skillet HERE.
You’ll need a wire whisk to combine your ricotta cheese and egg whites. We love this set of 3 whisks.
If you haven’t heard of this magical tool, we’d recommend getting a Chop-Stir ASAP. Our mom swears by this for cooking her ground turkey and beef, and now we do too!
Slow Cooker Liner:
You’ll want to make sure your slow cooker is sprayed with nonstick cooking spray, or for an even easier cleanup, try out a slow cooker liner.
These slow cooker liners make cleaning your slow cooker a breeze!
How to Make slow cooker baked ziti
Step by step instructions on making our slow cooker baked ziti:
In a large skillet over medium heat, brown ground turkey with chopped onions. We love using Jennie-O turkey in our recipes, but any kind of turkey will do.
Once meat is fully cooked, mix in italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
Pour in spaghetti sauce and stir meat mixture until well combined.
In a separate bowl, mix together ricotta cheese, egg whites, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, and parmesan cheese.
Spray your slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray or line with slow cooker liner.
Pour 1 1/2 cups of sauce in bottom of slow cooker.
On top of sauce, layer half the noodles, half the cheese mixture, and another 1 1/2 cups of sauce. Repeat the layers twice ending with sauce.
Cook on high for 30 minutes, and then switch to low for 2-3 hours or until noodles are tender and ziti is cooked through.
10 minutes before serving, top ziti with remaining mozzarella cheese and continue cooking until melted.
REcipe Revisions to Slow Cooker Baked Ziti
One thing I love about this recipe is that it’s easy to make your own! Here are a few revisions we’ve tried and LOVE!
Add Fresh Basil
There aren’t a lot of spices in this recipe, which is part of what makes it so simple! If you’re wanting to add some fresh herbs, we’d highly recommend mixing some chopped basil into your sauce or ricotta mixture.
Leave Out The Meat
Looking for a vegetarian dish? Leave out the turkey and add your spices to the sauce for a delicious meat free meal!
Use Ground Beef
Maybe it’s just my husband…but I have the hardest time getting him to eat recipes with ground turkey! While turkey in this recipe is delicious, ground beef would work just as great.
Whole Wheat Pasta
Using whole wheat ziti in this recipe is a great way to get some extra protein and fiber, while saving on calories.
Side dishes for slow cooker baked ziti
Dinner was a breeze, but what do you serve with it? Here are a few sides we love with our Slow Cooker Baked Ziti.
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Have you checked out our YouTube channel?
In this video, we’re making our Easy Broccoli Salad. This would pair great with your Slow Cooker Baked Ziti!