Crock Pot Spaghetti – Family Style

Recently while putting together our menu planner and subsequent shopping list, I asked Hubby what he wanted. While I had most of the coming week planned out, there were a couple of holes that needed to be filled. Wednesday in  particular was an issue. September is a busy month in the Party and Event Business, which always seems to equate to two things – getting home later than usual and not much in the mood for starting dinner. Crock Pot to the rescue!

Hubby pointed out that we haven’t had spaghetti – plain old fashion, simple spaghetti – in a while. Cooking spaghetti in a crock pot is nothing new. So imagine my surprise when I discovered that I didn’t have a recipe for Crock Pot Spaghetti. Now mind you, I’m not suggesting that I cannot make a pot of spaghetti without a recipe to guide me. However; I like yumprint for creating a shopping list. It’s simple – you just drop your recipe from one of your saved cookbooks into the groceries and bam – there’s your list. Besides, I wasn’t the one who would be doing the cooking. Kiddo isn’t working at the moment, so a lot of the cooking has fallen back on him. He doesn’t need much in the way of a recipe, either. Like me, a recipe is sort of a “guide of suggestions”, not carved in stone. I’d be willing to bet he will add his own spin on the recipe below. I left him with a basic list of instructions and one request – take pictures.

My dad is a great one for making Crock Pot Spaghetti. He will let it simmer until there is very little sauce and a ton of meat. Dad is also extremely heavy-handed with the salt. I never seem to get my spaghetti sauce salty enough for Pops. Another thing Dad insists upon is keeping the spaghetti sauce and the spaghetti noodles separate, mixing the two on his plate. It’s one of the reasons he does not like to order spaghetti in a restaurant. I don’t care one way or the other. When feeding a crowd, it’s easier to mix. Serving family style, it’s just as easy to combine as it is to serve separately. When it comes to left-overs (when there are any), we’ll mix it all together in a gallon zip-lock bag and toss it in the fridge for later.

Growing up, Mom made a great spaghetti sauce. She cooked hers up in a cast iron skillet, over low heat and tended to it all day.

Crock Pot Spaghettie – Family Style
2 lbs ground beef
1 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 Jar Spaghetti Sauce, any kind
1 can Tomatoes, Italian Style
1/2 tablespoon roasted garlic
Salt & Pepper to Taste
1/4 Cup Red Wine
1 lb Spaghetti Noodles

Heat olive oil in a cast iron skillet. Cook chopped onions until soft, about 5 minutes. Add ground beef and cook until browned, breaking meat up as it cooks.

Drain meat well. Place into crock pot. Pour spaghetti sauce over meat. Mix in roasted garlic, Italian Tomatoes and wine. Stir to blend.

Cover and cook on LOW 8 hours. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta al dente. Make sure the water is at a full, rapid boil and well-salted before adding your noodles. Stir often and maintain a nice, dancing boil to prevent pasta from sticking together. Also, the sooner the sauce is mixed with the pasta, the better. If you have enough sauce, add some to the pasta immediately after draining. It will make serving the pasta easier.

Place pasta on plates, top with spaghetti sauce and serve.


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