This baked ziti is so much better than the original types of recipes. Made in the crockpot, it simmers and becomes the perfect texture over a long period of time. Mom told me my kids would love this baked ziti and that it was super easy to make. She is so right! This baked ziti comes together on all it’s own with a great depth of flavor, even though you barely have to do anything to prep it. No chopping and dicing? That’s my kind of meal!
The rest goes as follows:
2 (25 ounce) jars of Barilla pasta sauce
15 oz Barilla tomato sauce
1 pound UNCOOKED penne pasta
15 oz Polly-O ricotta cheese
⅓ cup freshly chopped basil
2 cups of freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 cup grated Asiago cheese (or use shredded mozzarella)
Combine ricotta, eggs, and basil in a bowl and stir well
In a large bowl, combine both pasta sauces and tomato sauce together.
Grate Parmesan cheese (I used around 2 cups) and set aside.
Grease the inside of a 6 qt slow cooker (I used vegan butter spread but you can use whatever you have)
Add 2⅓ cups of pasta sauce to the bottom of the slow cooker
Add ⅓ of the uncooked penne.
Dot on half of the ricotta mixture and spread out evenly.
Add half of the Parmesan cheese (1 cup)
Add another 2⅓ cups of sauce mixture
Add an additional ⅓ of the uncooked penne.
Dot on the remaining ricotta and spread out.
Sprinkle on the remaining parmesan cheese (1 cup)
Add the last ⅓ of the uncooked penne.
Top with the remaining 2⅓ cups of sauce mixture
Cover and cook on high for 2-3 hours, or until pasta is al dente (we cooked ours for around 2½ hours)
During the last few minutes, add asiago cheese (or sub mozzarella) to the top and allow to melt
Serve alone or topped with red pepper flakes and served with garlic bread
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Quick Tip: When reheating, add a little more pasta sauce so the noodles don’t dry up.