Easy Crock Pot Spaghetti is the real deal – with beef, pasta, sauce and seasonings it’s a cinch to make and full of flavor. A definite thumbs up for an easy slow cooking meal!
Crock pots are one of the greatest inventions…ever! You just sling stuff in and it takes it from there. It is a thing of beauty – there should be a crock pot pageant. Okay -so you get the idea! Anyway, pasta can be hard to get just right in the crock pot. I found that cooking it slowly is best. YEP!! I really did just say that, and adding a little more water to the sauce at the halfway mark is the right thing to do.
Before we get started, let me tell you that this crock pot spaghetti recipe is amazing. The pasta soaks up so much flavor from being cooked for an hour in the sauce, and the extra spices added to the jar of spaghetti sauce give it that extra somethin” somethin”! My mom used to call it “doctoring” the sauce…I don’t know why I always thought that meant adding booze to it!!
INGREDIENTS NEEDED FOR EASY CROCK POT SPAGHETTI
- Ground Beef
- Olive Oil
- Spaghetti Sauce
- Minced Garlic
- Minced Onion
- Italian Seasoning
- Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
Here are the stars of the show! The basil and parmesan cheese are not pictured with the cast because they are optional ingredients! *Note – I keep one pound tubs of cooked ground beef in the freezer and just pull them out as needed. It’s economical because I buy ground beef when it is on sale, then cook and store in the freezer. I cannot even tell you what a HUGE time-saver that is. I do the same thing with shredded chicken!
To get started, use the olive oil to grease up the bottom and sides of your crock pot. Use only as much as you need, there should not be a puddle of oil at the bottom of the pot.. Next, throw the drained ground beef, spaghetti sauce, garlic, Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, minced onion and hot water into the crock pot. Stir everything around until well mixed, set the crock pot on High for one hour, cover and walk away. Yup, that’s it!
After one hour, the sauce, beef and spice flavors should be coming together nicely. Can you see where the mixture has reduced? …you can see how much by the ring around the top of the sauce.
Now it’s time for the back breaking work (just kidding)! Break the pasta in half and throw it into the sauce. Stir the pasta so that it is covered with the sauce. Add 1/2 cup of water if the sauce is too thick and stir again. Cover the crock pot back up and let the pasta cook for 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, the pasta will look like this. The noodles are flexible but not fully cooked. Add the other 1/2 cup of water if needed, stir, cover and cook the pasta and sauce for another 15 – 30 minutes, until the pasta is just cooked the way you like it.
*Note – the pasta cooking time may vary for many different reasons…like the size of your crock pot, the amount of liquid in the sauce and even the brand of the pasta you are using. For the best results, keep an eye on the pasta and remove from the crock pot when it is the consistency you prefer.
Transfer to plates, garnish with basil and Parmesan cheese (optional) and serve hot with toasted Italian bread and a green salad.
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TOOLS USED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE
- Crock Pot/ Slow Cooker – for cooking this tasty one pot meal!
- Cast Iron Skillet – for browning the ground beef.
Easy Crock Pot Spaghetti
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- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 pound ground beef, browned and drained
- 24 ounce marinara sauce, or Homemade Marinara Sauce
- 3 cloves minced garlic, about 1-1/2 tsps
- 1 tbsp minced onion, dried
- 1 tbsp italian seasoning
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 2 cups hot water
- 16 ounces spaghetti pasta
- 1 cup water, as needed
- 2 tbsp chopped basil, optional
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, optional
- Grease bottom and sides of the crock pot with olive oil.
- Place the cooked and drained ground beef, spaghetti sauce, garlic, italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, minced onion and hot water into the crock pot. Stir until well mixed, cover and set the crock pot on High for 1 hour.
- Break the pasta in half and place in the sauce. Stir the pasta so that it is covered with the sauce. Add 1/2 cup of water if the sauce is too thick and stir again.
- Cover the crock pot and let the pasta cook for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes. add another 1/4 – 1/2 cup of water if needed, stir, cover and cook for another 15 – 30 minutes, until the pasta is done.
NUTRITION INFORMATION PER SERVING
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