Crock Pot Ziti With Spinach, Ricotta, and Tomato Sauce
photo by Joanne
- Ready In:
- 4hrs 30mins
- 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes (I used tuttorosso brand no salt added)
- 1 medium whole onion, skin removed
- 4 garlic cloves, smashed
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
- 1⁄4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1⁄4 cup unsalted butter
- 2 (10 ounce) boxes frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry of all liquid
- 1 (15 ounce) jar ricotta cheese (I use sorrento brand)
- 1⁄4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1⁄4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- cooking spray, for greasing crock pot
- 1 egg
- 1 (16 ounce) box ziti pasta, rinsed with cold water in collander
For the sauce:
- Heat a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Add olive oil and garlic. Brown garlic about 2 minutes then discard the garlic but reserve the oil. To the garlic flavored oil, add the crushed tomatoes, whole onion, butter, 1 teaspoons sea salt, and crushed red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer partially covered for 20 minutes. Remove onion and discard when done.
- In a large bowl, combine ricotta cheese, egg, spinach, 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese, 1 teaspoons salt and fresh ground black pepper. Mix well to combine. Add ziti, toss to combine.
- Spray the crock pot with cooking spray. Add about 1/2 cup of sauce, then add 1/4 of the pasta mixture. Repeat 3 more layers (4 layers in total) ending with sauce. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese over the top.
- Cover and cook on low for 4 to 5 hours depending on your slow cooker.
- If you have any sauce left over. Save it in case you want to add more to the finished dish.
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