Slow Cooker Baked Ziti

A delicious dinner to finish off a busy fall day ...

There are days when there are just too many other things to do besides cook.  Eliminating just one step or preparing ahead can alleviate some anxiety during the dinner crunch time. The Goddess on the Go recommends Slow Cooker Baked Ziti for a delicious make ahead dish that is perfect to come home to on a blustery fall day. 

All of your ingredients can be measured the night before, if you are making it for lunch the next day or in morning, if you are making it for dinner.  Be sure to cover everything for optimum freshness.

Here is the easy to follow recipe. Enjoy!


7 cups good quality tomato sauce

1 pound ziti rigati (I like pasta with grooved lines to hold the sauce)

¼ cup fresh chopped basil

1 tablespoon fresh chopped oregano or 1 ½ teaspoons dry

1 teaspoon salt

4 cloves minced garlic

32 ounce container whole milk ricotta

¼ cup whole milk

5 cups shredded mozzarella (I like traditional cut)

1 cup shredded Italian cheese blend

Basil leaves for garnish

PAM® olive oil no stick spray

Serves 8


Have sauce portioned out.

Mix ricotta with basil, oregano, garlic, salt and milk.

Mix together mozzarella and Italian cheese blend.

Spray slow cooker crock with olive oil spray.

Place 2 cups tomato sauce in bottom of slow cooker.

Add the following in layers, distributing evenly.

1/3 of ziti rigati

½ of the ricotta mixture

2 cups cheese mixture

2 cups tomato sauce

1/3 of ziti rigati

½ remaining half of ricotta mixture

2 cups of cheese mixture

2 cups tomato sauce

Last 1/3 of ziti rigati, pushing down into sauce

1 cup tomato sauce spread carefully over pasta

Cook on high for 2 1/2 and a half hours. 

Top with remaining cup of mozzarella cheese blend mixture.

Preheat broiler.

Heat for another 15 minutes until cheese melts.

Remove slow cooker crock from base.

Brown baked ziti under broiler for 1 minutes to color. Mozzarella browns quickly, so watch carefully

Let baked ziti set for 15 minutes - (VERY IMPORTANT!).

Garnish with fresh basil.

Serve with Italian bread and green salad.