I pulled this recipe out of my copy of All You last summer, and we've enjoyed it many times since! You do not have to cook the pasta ahead of time, which is a great time-saver and means less dishes to wash. I also love that this doesn't have to cook all day. You can throw everything together at 3pm and still have a hot dinner on the table!
The last time I made this, I changed things up and used cottage cheese instead of ricotta cheese. The taste was very similar, and I probably would not have even noticed if I had not know that it was cottage cheese. Since ricotta can be pricey, this is a great money saving alternative!
Slow-Cooker Baked Ziti (via All You)
1 15-oz container part-skim ricotta (or try cottage cheese!)
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. salt
1 lb. ziti
2 25-oz jars marinara sauce (I used my homemade sauce, naturally)
2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh basil leaves (I used dry)
Combine all three cheeses and salt in a medium bowl. Rinse ziti under cold water in a colander, allowing some water to cling to the pasta.
Mist inside of slow cooker with cooking spray. Place half of the pasta in an even layer over bottom of cooker. Spoon half of the sauce over pasta. Dot with half the cheese mixture and half of basil. Repeat with remaining pasta, sauce, cheese and basil.
Pour in 2/3 cup water. Cover and cook on high until pasta is tender, 2 to 3 hours.
We love to round out this kind of meal with a nice salad and some fresh bread!