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18 Slow Cooker Pasta and Pasta Sauce Recipes

By: Marah Altenberg, Editor,
Updated August 30, 2023

Your slow cooker can be an amazing cooking machine for pasta dishes. To get your pasta to turn out well there is some important information to know. Lasagnas tend to cook very nicely in a slow cooker, while some pasta noodles don't do as well. Heavier types of noodles in general cook better and more evenly. Rotini, elbow macaroni and shells fall into this group. Some say wheat noodles also hold their shape better. You need to be very careful with the timing of adding your pasta. Shells and rotini should be added around 18 to 20 minutes before the end the cooking process in the slow cooker, while whole grain pasta, which takes longer to cook, should be added 30 to 40 minutes before the end of cooking your dish. You need to use extreme caution when deciding how long your noodles will stay in. They can easily get mushy if your timing is off.

Another tip that will save you from overcooking your pasta is to take it out of the slow cooker once it's ready and put it into a serving dish. If you let it sit in the slow cooker to continue warming, chances are it will continue to cook and come out mushy and undesirable. Timing is everything.

You should also be thinking about the flavor of your pasta dish. Kosher salt is a great seasoning for the pasta to make the flavor come more alive. It adheres to food better and helps the dish become more flavorful. An easy way to help your dish have a stronger garlic taste is to cut a garlic clove in half and rub it around the side of your pot before putting in the water and pasta noodles. The garlic flavor will glom on to the noodles once your pot is simmering.

Slow Cooker Pasta Recipes

Noodles are universally popular. Preparing a pasta dish can be easy and fun. Shaking up your pasta menu can be as easy as using a different shape noodle each week. You can also change up the sauces you use and the seasoning too. One week you can prepare a milder sauce in your slow cooker and one week you can kick it up a notch with some serious spices. It is nice to surprise the family with different combinations to keep them excited for dinnertime. Enjoy 10 different types of pasta recipes that we consider some of our favorites!

Slow Cooker Pasta Sauce Recipes

A good pasta sauce recipe can be hard to find. There are variety of marinara and meat sauces to choose from and there are also lighter sauces out there as well. It all depends on what you are looking for. We have some very flavorful ones to share with you to use at your next Italian meal. 

Bonus: Our Top 4 Slow Cooker Spaghetti Recipes

Who does not love spaghetti? As everyone grows up from a child to an adult their fondness for spaghetti continues to grow. Most families have some spaghetti dishes on their weekly menu. There are many types of delicious spaghetti dishes you can make in your slow cooker. Here are our 4 top recipes. 

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