Slow-Cooker Lasagna in a Soup Bowl

We promise you no one will leave the dinner table without a second helping of this hearty soup! It’s a perfect, informal meal to serve anyone. Adding fresh vegetables at the end of cooking gives the soup wonderful fresh flavor.  

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Description

Slow-Cooker Lasagna Soup
Recipe Type: Entree
Author: Phyllis Good 
Serves: 6
Cook Time: 5 1/4 to 6 3/4 hours in a 5-qt. slow cooker 
Ingredients
  • 1 pound bulk sweet or hot Italian sausage or any link sausage, squeezed out of its casing  
  • 2 cups chopped onions 
  • 1 cup sliced or diced carrots 
  • 4 cups chicken broth (make your own, page 256) 
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can Italian-style stewed tomatoes, chopped  
  • 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce 
  • 1 to 1 1⁄4 cups uncooked mafalda pasta  
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced  
  • 2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms 
  • 2 cups thinly sliced ribbons of fresh spinach 
  • 1 1/2 cups diced provolone or mozzarella cheese  
  • 1/4 cup grated or shredded Parmesan cheese, plus more for topping  
  • fresh topper: 1/4 cup torn fresh basil 
Instructions
  1. Grease the interior of the slow cooker crock with butter or nonstick cooking spray.
  2. If you have time, cook the sausage in a skillet over medium, breaking up sausage with a wooden spoon. Stir in the onions after the sausage is no longer pink.Sauté the onions until soft.Use a slotted spoon to transfer the meat and onions to the prepared crock. Discard the drippings.  Note: If you don’t have time, you can crumble the uncooked sausage straight into the crock. Stir in the onions, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon.  
  3. Add the carrots, chicken broth, chopped stewed tomatoes, and tomato sauce, stirring to combine. 
  4. Cover. Cook on Low 4 to 5 hours. 
  5. Stir in the uncooked pasta and garlic. 
  6. Cover and continue cooking on Low 1 to 1 1⁄2 hours or until the pasta is tender  but not mushy. 
  7. Stir in the mushrooms. Cover. Cook another 10 minutes on Low. 
  8. Just beforeserving,stir in the sliced spinach. (No need to cook the spinach; the heat from the soup will wilt it.) 
  9. To serve, divide the diced provolone or mozzarella cheese evenly into bowls and ladle the soup over the top. 
  10. Top with the Parmesan cheese and torn fresh basil. 

TIP: For spinach ribbons, stack fresh spinach leaves about 1 inch high. Roll them up and slice into 1/8 – to 1/4-inch-wide ribbons. 

Simple Swaps: 

  • Use fusilli or rotini instead of mafalda pasta.  
  • Use 1 to 2 (8-ounce) cans of mushrooms with liquid instead of fresh mushrooms. 

Make It Gluten-Free: Substitute broken soba or rice noodles, or brown rice pasta for the mafalda pasta. Stir it in with the mushrooms in Step 7 and cook 10 to 15 minutes or until the pasta is tender. You can also substitute shirataki noodles, adding them 5 minutes before the end of the cooking time. 

Make It for Picky Eaters: Use sweet, not hot, Italian sausage, or substitute plain turkey or pork sausage, or ground beef.  Omit or reduce the amount of onions and garlic. Add 1 cup additional carrots.  Switch to plain stewed tomatoes. 

Excerpted from Stock the Crock by Phyllis Good. Copyright © 2017 Oxmoor House. Reprinted with permission from Time Inc. Books, a division of Time Inc. New York, NY. All rights reserved 

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