This Slow Cooker Tortellini Pasta Bake recipe is an easy and delicious pasta bake made right in the crockpot! It's cheese tortellini pasta, your favorite marinara, spicy ground sausage, and loaded with cheese. It's an easy dump-and-go slow cooker meal the entire family loves.
Easy Cheese Tortellini Recipe
This is one of the easiest pasta bakes, and the good news, it cooks in your slow cooker! It's an easy dump and go recipe and the ingredients are so simple. All you need to do is throw the ingredients in, stir it up and just smell it cook. It has all the flavors of an incredible lasagna without all the work.
This is a great dinner to make throw-in during the summer when you don't want to heat up the house or even cook in the ski lodge while you're skiing. You can dump and leave it to cook for several hours and wah-lah, dinner is ready.
Ingredients In Pasta Bake:
- Tortellini Pasta- Fresh or frozen tortellini works best for this recipe. We prefer cheese tortellini but you can use any kind your family loves.
- Sausage- Hot Italian Sausage gives it some spice but you can always sub it for milk sausage or even ground beef. A combination of the sausage and beef is really delicious. Here's a guide to preparing a sausage/beef combo. (Make-ahead Spaghetti Meat) It saves a ton of time and is so handy for recipes like this one.
- Marinara Sauce- Use your favorite. My kids are pretty basic and don't like diced tomatoes in their marinara, hardly any texture. Just use your favorite jarred or canned marinara sauce.
- Mozzarella Cheese- Any Mozzarella or pizza blend cheese will do.
- Parmesan Cheese-Fresh Parmesan is best but just use whatever you have on hand.
- Water- This is needed so the tortellini can soak up some extra water. If you're using frozen pasta, keep an eye on your pasta, you may need to add some extra water. Some kinds of pasta are denser than others.
Tips for Cooking pasta in a slow cooker:
- You'll need to add some extra water while it cooks. The pasta needs to soak up some liquid while cooking. I added a 1/2 cup of water to my recipe and it was about perfect. You may need to check it a couple times and add more water if it is looking dry as it cooks.
- The mild sausage will work for this recipe but I like the Spicy Italian Sausage from Johnsonville.
- It's easy to prepare the meat for this ahead of time. I put together a tutorial on how to make ahead Spaghetti meat here if you want to check it out. It makes spaghetti dinners and pasta bakes so easy to prepare.
- I just used some Hunts Traditional pasta sauce (it's inexpensive and my kids love it because there aren't any "chunks"
- I used pre-shredded Parmesan cheese and pre-shredded mozzarella cheese. Why not make life a little easier!
- Some crockpots have hot spots and some cook faster than others. ( I have 2 slow cookers and one cooks food 20% faster than the other one. You can always turn it to warm if it bakes faster than you're anticipating.)
Slow Cooker Tortellini Pasta Bake
- 20 ounces Cheese Tortellini Pasta Fresh or frozen tortellini
- 1 lb Italian Sausage Johnsonville hot or mild sausage-Ground beef wold also work
- 24 ounces Marinara sauce Use your favorite
- 1 Cup Water
- 1 1/2 Cup Mozzerella Cheese
- 1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
- On medium high heat on the stove top, cook the Italian Sausage (or ground beef) in a skillet with a little water. Break up the sausage with a spoon as it cooks. Be sure to salt and pepper the meat as it cooks. When the sausage is no longer pink, take it off the heat. Drain any liquid from the meat and pour into the crock pot.
- Spray the inside of the slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray.
- Add the sausage to the slow-cooker, stir in tortellini, marinara sauce, 1 cup of water, 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese and the parmesan cheese.
- Stir the ingredients together and top with the remaining 1/2 Cup of mozzarella cheese.
- Cover and cook on low heat setting for 3-4 hours. Slow cookers have hot spots in them and some cook hotter than others. (I have 2 slow cookers and one will cook 20% faster than the other. You can always turn the food on warm if it cooks a little faster than you're anticipating.)
- Let the pasta cool for about 15 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
Best Pasta Dinner Recipes:
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This Homemade Slow Cooker Tortellini Pasta Bake recipe is an easy and delicious pasta bake made right in the Slow Cooker! It's cheese tortellini pasta, your favorite marinara, spicy ground sausage, and loaded with cheese. It's an easy dump-and-go slow cooker meal. Comfort food the entire family loves.