easy slow cooker pasta recipe

Welcome to Slow Cooker Week! We’re sharing all our favorite Crock Pot recipes, tips, tricks, and advice this week—and including the Instant Pot, of course, since it slow cooks with the best of ’em

These easy Crock-Pot pasta dishes are perfect for those long, cold winter days when all you really want to do is hunker down and watch Netflix cooking shows (or, you know, when you have to go to work). Generally speaking, pasta isn’t the sort of dish you turn to when you’re looking for a big, complicated cooking project. There are some exceptions, like lasagna. But for the most part, it’s a perfect go-to meal when you want a quick dinner on the table with minimal effort. And ideally, it should require only three steps: boil water + cook pasta + add sauce.

Cream of the Crock-PotsThe Best Slow Cookers for Every Personality and SituationOkay, water and pasta are simple enough, but what about the sauce? If you’re thinking about that store-bought stuff from a jar, fuggedaboutit. You can do so much better than that. Instead, let’s turn to the Crock-Pot: think of it as a pasta sauce-making machine that will turn out homemade, slow-cooked bolognese sauces and tomato marinaras that will make that plate of spaghetti all the more amazing to behold (and to be eaten).

There’s a little more to it than just throwing some tomatoes all willy-nilly into the slow cooker for a great slow cooker pasta sauce, but with a solid recipe and the right ingredients, not too much more. Here are nine recipes that will show you how to make slow cooker pasta recipes that come together at the push of a button.

1. Slow Cooker Spaghetti Bolognese

Easy Slow Cooker Spaghetti Bolognese recipe


There’s no way around it: real deal bolognese is a slow simmering affair. Your nonna might have made it by spending hours at the stove, stirring away. We like to throw it in the slow cooker with lots of garlic and basil and consider our work done. Get our Slow Cooker Spaghetti Bolognese recipe.

2. Slow Cooker Beef Goulash

Easy Slow Cooker Beef Goulash recipe


Pasta doesn’t always mean tomato sauce. Egg noodles love a hearty and rich sauce, the kind that sticks to and coats each piece in a thick, glossy sheen. Our slow cooker beef goulash brings all the beefy, lip-sticking goodness that those twirls demand. Get our Slow Cooker Beef Goulash recipe.

3. Slow Cooker Marinara

It’s always a good idea to have some backup marinara stored away to use on pasta, pizza, and more. You can easily make a large batch of this classic tomato sauce in the slow cooker and freeze up any extras for another day. Get the recipe Slow Cooker Marinara recipe.

4. Slow Cooker Creamy Chicken Spaghetti

There’s nothing like a cream sauce to satisfy any comfort food cravings. With cream cheese and condensed chicken soup (don’t knock it til you try it), plus tender chunks of chicken in the mix, this recipe takes that hankering to the max. (For a sort of Tex Mex-meets-alfredo dish, try this Crock-Pot Chicken Spaghetti recipe too.) Get the Slow Cooker Creamy Chicken Spaghetti recipe.

5. Slow Cooker Beef and Cheese Pasta

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Slow cooker beef and cheese pasta!

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Italian-American cuisine has a few signature ingredients: red sauce, herb-based seasonings, and lots of melty mozzarella cheese. Here, they all come together in a sauce that would have its place in Little Italy. Get the Slow Cooker Beef and Cheese Pasta recipe.

6. Slow Cooker Italian Pork Shoulder Ragu

Just because slow cooker sauces are easy doesn’t mean that they can’t be sophisticated, too. This hearty concoction with chunks of tender pork and Italian sausage is definitely worthy of a classy dinner party or special meal with family or friends. Get the Slow Cooker Italian Pork Shoulder Ragu recipe.

7. Crock-Pot Enchilada Pasta

Although it’s got tomatoes at its heart, the beans, corn, and spices in this enchilada-inspired sauce take things in a totally unexpected direction. Break out the hot sauce for this one. Get the Crock-Pot Enchilada Pasta recipe.

8. Slow Cooker Spinach Lasagna

Let your slow cooker do the heavy lifting while you relax with a glass of wine. (If you’re in the mood for meat, try a Spicy Turkey Slow Cooker Lasagna recipe.) Get our Slow Cooker Spinach Lasagna recipe.

9. Crock-Pot Chicken Alfredo

Creamy alfredo sauce is a comfort food classic; making it in the slow cooker means you could just snuggle in a bunch of blankets and keep cozy until it’s time to eat. Get the Crock-Pot Chicken Alfredo recipe.

Visit our Slow Cooker Week headquarters for everything else you need to know (and cook).

Related Video: How to Hack Your Slow Cooker

Miki Kawasaki is a New York City–based food writer and graduate of Boston University’s program in Gastronomy. Few things excite her more than a well-crafted sandwich or expertly spiced curry. If you ever run into her at a dinner party, make sure to hit her up for a few pieces of oddball culinary trivia.
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