Entrees/ Recipes/ vegetarian recipes

Summer Slow Cooker Lasagna with Zucchini and Eggplant

Slow Cooker Summer Lasagna

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!

This post was originally published on August 4, 2014.

Print

Summer Slow Cooker Lasagna with Zucchini and Eggplant

Slow Cooker Summer Lasagna

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

  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours
  • Yield: 6 servings

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.

You Might Also Like

49 Comments

  • Reply
    tina Muir
    August 4, 2014 at 8:05 am

    Oooooh you should definitely add this to meatless monday! This looks amazing, what a brilliant idea! So yummy!

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 5, 2014 at 6:43 am

      Thanks Tina!

  • Reply
    marcie
    August 4, 2014 at 11:21 am

    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! 🙂

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 5, 2014 at 6:43 am

      I’m so lazy about boiling lasagna noodles – I’ll do anything to avoid it!!

  • Reply
    Alexis @ Hummusapien
    August 4, 2014 at 11:27 am

    Serious drool happening. I love love love the idea of making lasagna in the slow cooker, espesh one loaded with summer’s bounty! Pinning!

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 5, 2014 at 6:44 am

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

  • Reply
    JulieD
    August 4, 2014 at 9:39 pm

    This looks so good! I have to try it!!

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 5, 2014 at 6:45 am

      Thanks Julie!

  • Reply
    Kelly
    August 5, 2014 at 4:24 am

    Such a great idea to make this in the slow cooker! Love all the summer veggies in here too – it looks amazing!

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 5, 2014 at 6:46 am

      No oven in the summer can be sooo nice! 🙂

  • Reply
    Megan
    August 6, 2014 at 10:00 am

    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!

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 7, 2014 at 6:07 am

      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! 🙂

  • Reply
    Maureen
    August 6, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    Just made this and wow is it good! Thank you so much for a great recipe!

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 7, 2014 at 6:08 am

      So happy to hear it Maureen! 🙂

  • Reply
    Jena
    August 7, 2014 at 4:45 pm

    Turned out very dry on top. I think it needs more sauce on the top noodles.

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 8, 2014 at 8:34 am

      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!

  • Reply
    Diane Kiriaji
    August 8, 2014 at 1:07 pm

    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!!

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 8, 2014 at 2:26 pm

      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!

      • Reply
        Diane
        August 8, 2014 at 2:40 pm

        Oh thx! I’ll let you know!

      • Reply
        Lindsey
        August 11, 2014 at 11:34 am

        I also accidentlly used the no boil noodles. Mine turned out grew it was just done faster, took about 2 1/2 hours. Thanks for a great recipe !

        • Reply
          Ashley Jennings
          August 12, 2014 at 6:53 am

          So glad you enjoyed it Lindsey! And thanks for sharing the cook time with the no-boil noodles!

          • Susanna Mikkelson
            August 14, 2016 at 3:00 pm

            How many calories are in the veggie lasagna?

          • Ashley Jennings
            August 22, 2016 at 11:58 am

            Hey Susanna – we don’t calculate calorie counts as they can vary by different brands of ingredients, substitutions, etc. But you can plug it in here to get a general idea: https://www.caloriecount.com/cc/recipe_analysis.php

  • Reply
    Joanne
    August 8, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    This is a TOTAL gamechanger! I will never look at lasagna-making the same way again, that’s for sure!

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 8, 2014 at 2:27 pm

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

  • Reply
    Russell from Chasing Delicious
    August 12, 2014 at 9:12 pm

    Such a delicious lasagna! Yum!

  • Reply
    elly
    September 4, 2014 at 8:45 am

    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.

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      September 4, 2014 at 1:32 pm

      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!

  • Reply
    Carly
    September 29, 2014 at 12:02 pm

    I cannot wait to make this tonight! Since corn is no longer in season, I think I’m going to swap it out for delicata squash. Just wondering if anyone has tried to incorporate fresh ricotta in this recipe? It’s hard for me to imagine an awesome lasagna without it, but I also can’t see how it would hold up in a slow cooker for 3 hours. Any ideas?

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      September 29, 2014 at 3:24 pm

      Hi Carly! I haven’t used the ricotta in this particular recipe but I have added it to other lasagnas that I’ve made in my crockpot. I’ve never had any problems with it in the slow cooker – always tastes great 🙂

  • Reply
    Janet
    May 8, 2015 at 8:10 pm

    I just made this, but substituted canned pumpkin mixed with almond milk for the tomato sauce. For the vegetables I used zucchini, onions and spinach. Daiya mozzarella cheese and no boil whole wheat noodles. It was excellent! Thank you for the recipe inspiration!

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      May 11, 2015 at 9:12 am

      So glad you enjoyed it Janet! Love the sound of your version!

  • Reply
    Barb
    June 9, 2015 at 7:13 pm

    Hi Looks great, but how long if you cook it on low? Working 8 hrs , most crockpot recipes are for short periods of time 🙁 Thanks

    • Reply
      Barb
      June 9, 2015 at 7:15 pm

      sorry just read instructions so I guess this would have to wait until weekends

      • Reply
        Ashley Jennings
        June 11, 2015 at 3:45 pm

        Hey Barb! Unfortunately, yes, I would wait. Even on low this cooks pretty “fast” in the crockpot!

  • Reply
    Theresa @DearCreatives
    June 18, 2015 at 6:11 pm

    I can’t wait to try making this in the summer, keeping the heat down in the house. Pinned for later. Thanks for the recipe

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      June 25, 2015 at 10:54 am

      Thanks Theresa! Hope you enjoy!

  • Reply
    Richard
    July 23, 2015 at 3:23 pm

    What size slow cooker was used to make this recipe?

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      July 27, 2015 at 12:47 pm

      Hi Richard, I use a 6 1/2 quart slow cooker!

  • Reply
    Bunny Devenere
    September 14, 2015 at 9:48 pm

    This was amazing. Didn’t miss the meat at all.

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      September 16, 2015 at 12:25 pm

      So glad to hear you enjoyed it Bunny! Thanks for letting us know!

  • Reply
    Dan
    December 19, 2015 at 2:01 am

    Used this recipe as inspiration today. Wound up out of the house longer than expected so yes the noodles were soft. I added slices of large portobello mushrooms as well and it turned out great. The mushrooms slices help to satisfy the meat eaters and keep the veggie fans happy too.

    Next time I’ll set the timer to achieve firmer noodles but thanks for the inspirational recipe.

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      December 30, 2015 at 7:31 am

      Glad to hear you enjoyed it!

  • Reply
    Janine
    August 29, 2016 at 9:38 am

    Hi Ashley, have you ever tried out Cocktail canned tomatoes? They are so good. Such a pretty and nice recipe. xoxo Janine

    • Reply
      Ashley Jennings
      August 30, 2016 at 9:43 am

      I haven’t! And thank you!

  • Reply
    Nate Tolbert
    October 23, 2016 at 8:56 pm

    This recipe is amazing, and I much prefer the veggie lasagna to boring meat lasagna! I added Brussel Sprouts and Spinach in place of the eggplant. It is going to be my go to recipe.

  • Reply
    Lorraine Carpenter
    May 25, 2017 at 5:49 pm

    For those who added spinach….how much and did you sauté it with the other vegies, or put it in raw?

  • Reply
    Heather
    September 18, 2017 at 10:39 pm

    Even my kids devoured this! Delicious! Thanks for the recipe, and the crock pot tips. I used no-boil noodles and cooked on high for just over 2 hours before letting it sit for a short while to set up. Perfect!

  • Reply
    Carrie Sparks
    September 18, 2017 at 11:50 pm

    I got an enormous zucchini from a friend and found this along with a few other recipes to use it up (still have some zucchini left! 😅) I did add mild Italian sausage since I’m not a vegetarian and it is AWESOME!!! The prep does take some time but worth it. I’d like to try with portobellos next time too! Thank you!

  • Leave a Reply