Okay, so I am not a food blogger…never have been and NEVER will be. Seriously, I cannot cook to save my life. My cookies come from a package…so does my mac and cheese. Even my “homemade chicken and dumplings soup is from Semi-Homemade with that sweet blond chick who I can never recall her name (Sandra Lee…looked it up). All that being said, today I am going to blow your mind with the best secret for busy teachers trying to balance it all. So the secret is stolen from an old friend, don't judge me!
|Image Credit: Kitch Bain | Dollar Photo Club|
“I hungry!” are consistently the first two words I hear out of my two-year old after I get into the door of her day care. From that moment, it is a race against the grumpy clock if she doesn't get fed. A snack won't do…the girl needs food. NOW. My husband and I like to joke that she turns into Betty White ala the 2010 Snickers commercial.
I, however, just need a few minutes to regroup from the day. So you can see our problem. That's where my crock pot comes to the rescue. Pop all the ingredients in before we walk out the door to work…walk in and it is ready to go! From there I can dish up a plate for my mini-Betty White and sit down to chat about her day at school while I regroup.
Up to this point the problem has been those recipes that don't need all day…even on low. For example my very favorite, so easy that even this non-cook can't mess it up crockpot recipe is lasagna. However, this recipe only needs 3-4 hours on low. Find me a teacher that can come home at lunch and turn the crockpot on, and I will find you a million dollars from the money tree in my back yard! This meant up until recently, I have been stuck making this on the weekends. No more my friends!! A few weeks back my best friend from high school (who is also in education), put up this picture…
Yep, that's right! She uses the timer from her Christmas tree lights to start her crockpot at the perfect time so nothing overcooks. She's a total genius, right?! I was so impressed, I had to steal the idea and then ask her if it was okay to share with all of you.
So now that you know the secret (thanks again, Allison!), I am going to share my super easy, not-so-homemade crockpot lasagna recipe that I can FINALLY make on any given Tuesday.
- 1 package of lasagna noodles
- 1 jar of pasta sauce (I like Ragu Garden Veggie)
- 1-2 lb of ground meat (hamburger, turkey, chicken)
- 1 container of ricotta
- 1 container of cottage cheese
- 1 package of shredded cheese (whatever kind you like)
- Prepare your ingredients by browning the meat, draining any fat. When you finish, add the jar of sauce to the browned meat. In a separate bowl, mix the ricotta and cottage cheese.
- Pour 1/3 of the meat mixture into the bottom of the crock pot, and spread it to cover the bottom.
- Add a layer of uncooked noodles, breaking the noodles to fit the space better.
- Use 1/3 of the cheese mixture, spreading it out across the noodles. Add 1/3 of the shredded cheese on top of this. You can top with a layer of meat or a layer of noodles, depending on your preference.
- Repeat the layers until you run out of ingredients. Be sure the top layer is meat or cheese NOT noodles.
- Add the remaining shredded cheese on top. Cook on low for 3-4 hours.
That's it! It is so easy that even this non-cook cannot screw it up too badly. Plus it saves me when I get home with a grumpy girl.