This easy-to-make dish is perfect for busy weeknights. It’s made with simple ingredients, and the cheesy goodness of this dish will be sure to please even the pickiest eaters in your family. Best of all, there’s just one pot!
- Slow cooker
- 1 pound ziti pasta uncooked
- 48 ounces marinara sauce store bought or homemade
- 15 ounces diced tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella divided
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- Layer the pasta, tomatoes, and cheese. To a 5 quart or larger slow cooker, add the uncooked pasta, marinara, diced tomatoes, Italian seasoning, grated parmesan and 1 cup of mozzarella. Mix until everything is fully incorporated. Dot in the ricotta cheese and lighty mix it in. Sprinkle the remaining 1 cup of shredded mozzarella over the pasta mixture.
- Cook. Cook on HIGH for 2-3 hours or until the pasta is al dente or cooked to your liking. Check the pasta often; cooking times will vary by machine. Serve immediately and garnish with fresh parsley or basil if desired.
🧂 a note about the Ingredients
Here’s what you’ll need to make this easy weeknight dinner:
- ziti pasta, uncooked
- marinara, store-bought or homemade
- diced tomatoes
- Italian seasoning
- grated parmesan cheese
- shredded mozzarella
- ricotta cheese
slow cooker (5 quarts or larger)
🥫 Storage instructions
Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days in an airtight container. Reheat in the microwave.
Will uncooked pasta get soft in the slow cooker?
It sure will! Just be sure to test it every so often because the time will vary based on your slow cooker.
I don’t like to freeze any cooked pasta, personally. This is so easy to make there’s no need to do so anyway.
Yes! You can add raw ground beef as long as it’s 85% to 90% lean. Just stir it well to break it up before cooking. You can also add cooked, crumbled ground beef or sausage on top of the sauced pasta in step one.
👩🏻🍳 Expert tips
If you don’t have an Italian seasoning blend, use a combination of oregano, thyme, and basil instead.
For more flavor, add 1 teaspoon of garlic powder and/or crushed red pepper
Penne or rigatoni pasta can be used in place of the ziti.