Slow Cooker Lasagna

Slow Cooker Lasagna made with lasagna noodles, beef, mozzarella, ricotta and Parmesan cheese is the ultimate comfort food in just 20 minutes of prep time.

A classic Italian recipe get a Slow Cooker Recipe twist with this lasagna. Looking for a more traditional version, try our Ultimate Beef Lasagna.

Slow Cooker Lasagna made with lasagna noodles, beef, mozzarella, ricotta and Parmesan cheese is the ultimate comfort food in just 20 minutes of prep time.

 Slow Cooker Lasagna

Lasagna doesn’t have to be a dish you cook only on the weekends. With just a little prep you can enjoy this slow cooker lasagna for weeknight meals. 

Easy Weeknight Meal:

The process of making lasagna on weeknights can be hard. Between assembly, baking and cooling it could be a multi-hour process before you’re ready to eat. The magic of this lasagna is you prepare it in the morning, come home and remove the insert from your slow cooker to allow it to cool gently. 

Update: This recipe has been tested by a number of readers who have successfully assembled the recipe the night before and just set it to cook in the morning. Please review comment section for details.

Note: Be sure you do not cool the insert directly on a heat sensitive surface like granite or marble. Please cool it on your stove-top surface.

If you’ve just arrived home:

  1. Go straight to the kitchen and remove the insert.
  2. Unwind, change, get kids settled, etc.
  3. Make a side salad like our Classic Wedge Salad and bake some Garlic Bread.
  4. By the time you’ve done this your lasagna will be cool enough to serve in slices.

Total Time to dinner from arriving home? 30 minutes.

More Slow Cooker Recipes:

Prepare Ahead:

The miracle of this Slow Cooker Beef Lasagna is that it takes almost no time at all!

  • No boiling of noodles – using a classic lasagna noodle but you still don’t have to boil it ahead! This takes a step out of your recipe with no effort at all.
  • No long simmer times for the tomato sauce because the flavors in this recipe build all day long as it cooks low and slow!
  • Prepare the meal filling ahead the night before.
  • Cooking the beef and onions then letting them cool and refrigerating them will make this a quick preparation in the morning.

Bonus: The smell in your kitchen will remind you of a Sunday sauce you’ve been working all day on.


Crock Pot Lasagna with almost none of the effort of normal lasagna.


FAQs for Slow Cooker Lasagna:

  • Marinara Sauce: Homemade Quick and Easy Marinara is a super flavorful and easy sub recipe you’ll want to have for this dish. I make batches and freeze them so I can have them ready to go. If using jarred sauce, use two jars and thin with water.
  • Use Enough Liquid: The lasagna will stay moist and not dried out, but if you find your sauce is not enough to rise to the level of the pasta, add some water around the edges until it does.
  • Beef vs Sausage: I use all beef in this Slow Cooker Beef Lasagna, but the sausage flavor in most restaurant lasagnas is one I love duplicating. To do that easily here without using sausage, I add in some fennel seeds with goes a long way in making it taste like a Slow Cooker Beef and Sausage Lasagna.
  • Know your Slow Cooker: Make sure you know if your slow cooker has hot spots. Some of them can be severe leading to part of your pasta drying out. With a roast this is less important but for pasta dishes this could ruin the dish.
  • Check the Lasagna Early: Check the doneness at the lower end of the times given, if not quite done cook for the additional hour.
  • Garnish: In the picture above I sprinkled on a bit extra of dried basil just for the look. You can do this or garnish with fresh parsley at the end of cooking.

More Classic Italian Recipes:

How long does it take to make Slow Cooker Lasagna: The prep time is just 20 minutes, but the cook time is 3-4 hours on high as there is a lot of pasta in the slow cooker that has to cook through.

Can you cook pasta in the slow cooker? Yes, absolutely. This is one of my favorite ways to cook pasta, just adjust the cook time to about half of your normal slow cooker recipes so the pasta doesn’t dry out.


You'll LOVE this slow cooker beef lasagna, it is so easy to make!


  • Serve: After cooking this recipe don’t leave it at room temperature for more than 2 hours. Do not leave on keep warm function, this will continue to cook the pasta and dry it out.
  • Store: Once the lasagna has cooled to room temperature you can remove it in pieces from the slow cooker and store it in the fridge for 3-4 days.
  • Freeze: This is also a great recipe to keep in the freezer for 2-3 months. To reheat the meal after freezing, let it thaw in the fridge overnight, then bake or microwave pieces with a bit of additional cheese on top.

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Slow Cooker Lasagna made with lasagna noodles, beef, mozzarella, ricotta and Parmesan cheese is the ultimate comfort food in just 20 minutes of prep time.
5 from 25 votes

Slow Cooker Lasagna

Slow Cooker Lasagna made with lasagna noodles, beef, mozzarella, ricotta and Parmesan cheese is the ultimate comfort food in just 20 minutes of prep time.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Keyword Slow Cooker Lasagna
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 20 minutes
Servings 10 Servings
Calories 375 kcal
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 2 pounds ground beef , (85/15)
  • 1/2 yellow onion, , diced
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 6 cups marinara sauce , (or two bottles of pasta sauce with two added cups of water)
  • 1 box lasagna noodles , don't use the no-boil variety
  • 8 ounces ricotta cheese
  • 8 ounces mozzarella cheese
  • 6 ounces shredded Parmesan cheese


  1. In a large dutch oven or skillet, add the beef and onion on medium high heat, breaking it apart into small crumbles as it cooks, about 6-8 minutes.

  2. Drain any excess fat from the pan.

  3. Add in the basil, oregano, fennel seeds, Kosher salt and crushed red pepper flakes and cook for an additional 30 seconds.

  4. Add in the marinara sauce and stir to combine.
  5. Add enough sauce to cover the bottom of the slow cooker.
  6. Into your slow cooker evenly layer in the following order (take care to make sure the layers are as flat as possible):

      • Lasagna noodles broken to fit the shape of your slow cooker (a little overlap is totally fine here).

      • Spoon a third of the meat sauce.

      • Add a third of the ricotta in small spoonfuls along with a third of the mozzarella and Parmesan.

  7. Cook on low heat for 5-6 hours or on high heat for 3-4 hours.

  8. If you want the slices to come out clean, as with any lasagna you would have to wait 15-20 minutes for it to cool a bit. Remove the insert from your slow cooker and place on a heat-safe surface.

Recipe Notes


  • You will likely have some noodles left over, using them all in the slow cooker would be difficult.
  • If your liquids are not fully covering the noodles, add more water to just cover them.
Nutrition Facts
Slow Cooker Lasagna
Amount Per Serving (1 g)
Calories 375 Calories from Fat 234
% Daily Value*
Fat 26g40%
Saturated Fat 11g69%
Cholesterol 93mg31%
Sodium 1226mg53%
Potassium 782mg22%
Carbohydrates 9g3%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 25g50%
Vitamin A 925IU19%
Vitamin C 10.3mg12%
Calcium 209mg21%
Iron 3.8mg21%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Crock Pot Lasagna with almost none of the effort of normal lasagna. Your slow cooker does all the work!

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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  1. DELICIOUS- I will never make lasagna the old fashioned way again! This was SO EASY – I halved the ingredients & since I didn’t have any ricotta cheese I substituted with Greek yogurt & a little olive oil. I only used a total of 6 lasagna noodles because I could only fit 2 per layer and I didn’t want to overlap for fear it wouldn’t completely cook. My crockpot runs HOT so my noodles were a little mushy after 2 hrs on high but it didn’t stop the family from demolishing this.

  2. Love this recipe! However, my top noodles always get hard and burn at the edges. ? I’ve added more cheese hoping that would work but it doesn’t. What can I do? I use 2 jars of sauce and only do 2 layers.

    1. I’m so glad you enjoyed the dish. It sounds like your slow cooker might run a bit hot. You can always line the slow cooker with foil to help avoid this or add water in with your sauce. Hope this helps for next time.

  3. I used 1lb hamburger and 1lb Italian sausage and 15 oz of ricotta cheese. It was DELICIOUS!! I took to work and there was no leftovers!! Two people asked for the recipe I used!!

  4. Made this recipe loved it. If I cut the recipe in half I cut the cooking time down? Made it no long ago my husband requested again.

    1. I’m so glad you all loved it! You’ll need to use a smaller slow cooker to cut the recipe in half and not have it dry out during cooking.

  5. family loved it!! I love the addition of the fennel seed! so easy AND it was the first lasagna I have ever made

  6. Sabrina your recipe is the best recipe I have ever found for lasagna. It is so easy , I do not think you could go wrong. I have been eating it for three days now and it taste just as good as day one. Thank you so much for sharing.

  7. I am kind of confused, so if I use (2) 24 ounce jars of sauce, I still should add 2 cups of water? Do I just pour that over at the end?

  8. Super excited to try this!!! I am not a fan of Ricotta cheese (call me crazy). Is it ok to use another type of cheese (cheddar or more mozzarella) or would it be ok without? Or any other recommendations. Thank you so much in advance!

  9. I followed the recipe exactly as written and it was amazing! I have never made lasagna in the slow cooker so I was a little nervous. It came out in perfect layered pieces! I can’t wait to try it with my family spaghetti sauce recipe in the future when I have more time. Thank you!

  10. We had a power failure that killed my stove and repairs took a couple weeks before the parts ordered were delivered and put in by the technician I hired. I wanted something hot and gooey to eat. Lasagna is always a favorite so I tried this recipe since I have a nice large crock pot. It didn’t disappoint. It tasted every bit as good as a lasagna baked in the oven. I may never go to all the bother again of the boiling noodles, making sauce and so on and so on wasting my day. This was so easy and oh so gooey good.

    1. How awesome!! So glad to have been able to help with your craving. Hopefully everything gets back up to running again soon for you.

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