Summer Slow Cooker Lasagna with Zucchini and Eggplant

Summer Slow Cooker Lasagna with Zucchini and Eggplant
Have you ever made lasagna in your slow cooker? Up until the last few months, I was completely skeptical about the idea. I get a lot of use out of my slow cooker, especially on busy weekdays, but for pasta? I wasn’t so sure.

Now, I’m a convert. The slow cooker makes the process really simple: no boiling noodles, and no need to worry about making neat layers. It’s especially nice during the summer, since there’s no need to turn on the oven.

Summer Slow Cooker Lasagna with Zucchini and Eggplant
Before assembling this slow cooker lasagna, you will need to first cook some veggies (summery favorites like zucchini, eggplant, corn and tomatoes) in a skillet to cook off some of the liquid and keep your lasagna from being watery. Then you’ll spread a thin layer of sauce in the bottom of the slow cooker and top with several uncooked lasagna noodles, breaking them as needed to fit. I like to overlap the edges just a bit, but there’s no need to be perfect and fill every little crevice with a noodle.

Summer Slow Cooker Lasagna with Zucchini and Eggplant
The rest is easy: layers of veggies, sauce, noodles and cheese, just like a normal lasagna. The final layer includes a bit of panko breadcrumbs, which will help make the top slightly crunchy.

I recommend checking the lasagna at the 3 1/2 hour mark, to see if the pasta is tender. Don’t overcook the noodles—no one likes mushy lasagna!

Summer Slow Cooker Lasagna with Zucchini and Eggplant

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Total Time: 4 hours

Yield: 6 servings

Summer Slow Cooker Lasagna with Zucchini and Eggplant

No oven required here. You're just a few hours away from a satisfying slow cooker lasagna packed with summer's best veggies.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 large zucchini, chopped
  • 1 small eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 2 large ears corn, kernels removed
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 1/2 cups canned tomato sauce
  • 12 uncooked lasagna noodles
  • 1 1/3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • Fresh chopped basil, for serving

Instructions

  1. Set a large skillet over medium heat. Add in the olive oil. When hot, cook the onion in the oil for 2 to 3 minutes, until it starts to soften. Add in the zucchini, eggplant, corn, tomatoes, garlic, salt and red pepper flakes. Cook for 7 to 9 minutes, until the veggies are tender. Remove from the heat, taste and season with additional salt and red pepper flakes if needed.
  2. Spread 1/2 cup of the sauce in the bottom of your slow cooker. Top with a layer of three lasagna noodles, breaking them as needed to fit. Using a slotted spoon, top with 1/3 of the vegetable mixture, then 1/2 cup of the sauce and 1/3 cup of the mozzarella cheese. Repeat this process two more times -- noodles, vegetables, sauce, cheese. End with a final layer of noodles and the remaining 1/2 cup of the sauce. Sprinkle the top with the remaining 1/3 cup mozzarella, the parmesan and panko.
  3. Cover and cook on low for about 3 1/2 to 4 hours, until the noodles are cooked through. Turn off the slow cooker and let sit uncovered for 20 to 30 minutes before serving. This will let the lasagna set so you can cut it easily and it will hold its shape. Sprinkle the top with fresh basil before serving.

Notes

Make sure you use regular uncooked lasagna noodles. Do not use the no-boil kind.

For the canned tomato sauce, I used around 1 (15 ounce) can and 1 (8 ounce) can to get this amount.

It is possible to find vegetarian parmesan cheese in the US (such as the Whole Foods 365 brand or Organic Valley). Outside the US, look for vegetarian hard cheese to use instead.

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About Ashley

Ashley Jennings is the blogger behind Cookie Monster Cooking, where she shares healthy, whole foods along with a few indulgent treats. Ashley is a home cook who loves to play in the kitchen, where she is constantly tripping over her hungry beagle.   Read more from Ashley →

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Comments

  1. says

    Just the photo of the veggies in that slow cooker make my mouth water — I’m definitely trying this! I love the no-boil lasagna thing, and no oven in the summer is a must! :)

    • Ashley Jennings says

      Thanks Alexis! I’ve been cramming tons of summer veggies into just about everything these days! :)

  2. Megan says

    This looks delicious! The colors of all the different veggies are gorgeous. So glad I found your blog (Pinterest). It has been tough for me to get the support to eat more veggies and less/no meat so any recipe that is fulfilling to the tummy, but also the eye, is a win for me! Thanks for sharing an easy veggie lasagna!

    • Ashley Jennings says

      Thanks so much Megan! It’s a great way to get a bunch of veggies in one dish! And I’m with you – I love pretty looking food! :)

    • Ashley Jennings says

      It’s a great recipe to play around with to your own preferences – you can definitely add more sauce to get it to your own taste!

  3. Diane Kiriaji says

    Well, leave it to me to not read til the end. I did use no boil noodles because that’s what I had in the house. Hope I didn’t spoil it!!

    • Ashley Jennings says

      Hi Diane! It should be okay – I would just start checking it a little earlier – I’m thinking around the 3 hour mark to see if the noodles are done!

    • Ashley Jennings says

      Thanks Joanne! It’s so nice not to have to turn on the oven! Especially right now with all the humidity!

  4. elly says

    What about all the water from the eggplant and Zucchini? Doesn’t it come out all watery? How can I prevent that – i would love to make this. Thx.

    • Ashley Jennings says

      Nope! Since you are cooking the veggies in a skillet first to get rid of the excess moisture, you don’t need to worry about that. That step prevents it from getting all watery!

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