Chef Meg's Slow Cooker Lasagna

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Chef Meg's Slow Cooker Lasagna

original recipe: http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=770594

Ingredients:
  • 1 pound ground beef, 96% lean
  • 1⁄4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • One 24-ounce jar low-sodium marinara sauce
  • One 3⁄4-pound eggplant, unpeeled, diced
  • (2 cups)
  • 15 ounces part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup shredded Italian five-cheese blend
  • (see Note)
  • 1⁄4 cup egg substitute (or 1 egg white)
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 6 no-boil lasagna noodles

Instructions:

**Please note that the cooking time should not exceed 4 hours. This is not an “all day” slow-cooker meal.**

1. In a skillet over moderate heat, brown the ground beef and drain any excess fat. Stir in red pepper flakes, thyme, tomato sauce, eggplant, and 1 1⁄4 cup water.

2. In a mixing bowl, combine the ricotta, shredded cheese blend, egg substitute, and parsley.

3. Coat the inside of the slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Place enough meat sauce in the slow cooker to cover the bottom. Top with 2 or 3 lasagna noodles (break them up as needed) to cover the meat sauce. Repeat layer.

4. Top the second layer with all of the cheese mixture and finish with a top layer of the remaining meat sauce.

5. Cover and set the slow cooker on low. Cook for 31⁄2 to 4 hours.

Note: If you can’t find the Italian five-cheese blend, shredded part-skim mozzarella will work just fine.