Easy Slow Cooker Spaghetti Dinner


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No pre-cooking required with this Easy Slow Cooker Spaghetti Dinner. Sliced sausage replaces ground beef in this delicious sauce.

close up of spaghetti and noodles in a slow cooker
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Time for back to school recipes! This one you are going to love. No pre-cooking meat for your spaghetti sauce. Instead of ground beef, I use smoked sausage or any sausage from the kielbasa section of the store. I use my favorite Newman’s marinara, canned diced tomatoes, seasonings, onion and bell pepper. These ingredients simmer all day for a great homemade tasting sauce. After the cooking time is over, I boil one pound of spaghetti noodles on the stove top and add it right into the sauce. There is plenty of sauce so the noodles don’t get dry.  Lots of sauce is a must for my spaghetti since the soaking up the sauce with bread is part of the experience.

kielbasa, jars of marinara, seasonings, spaghetti, diced tomatoes, onion and bell pepper.

Below are the ingredients in the slow cooker before cooking.

kielbasa, bell pepper, onion, and marinara sauce in a slow cooker.

Below is what the sauce looks like after cooking for 8 hours on low and cooked spaghetti noodles added.

close up of spaghetti in a slow cooker with a wooden spoon in it.

Grab a bag of salad and French bread at the store, and dinner is ready to serve.

plate of spaghetti, salad and bread.

Are you ready for school? We have about a month before school starts and I have all the shopping to do still, plenty of time I suppose. I hope you put this meal on your rotation, it’s delicious!

Here are more pasta night recipes for your slow cooker:

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Spaghetti and kielbasa and sauce in a slow cooker

Easy Slow Cooker Spaghetti Dinner

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 15 minutes
Servings: 8
A twist on the standard Spaghetti dinner by adding smoked sausage instead of ground beef.


Sauce ingredients

  • 14 oz. smoked sausage , (or kielbasa), sliced
  • 48 oz. marinara, (Two-24-oz. jars)
  • 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes, do not drain
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 cup onion, (one small onion), diced
  • 2 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 2 tsp. dried leaf oregano
  • 2 tsp. dried leaf basil

For serving:

  • 1 lb. dried spaghetti, cooked according to package directions.
  • parmesan cheese


  • Add everything to the slow cooker (except spaghetti and cheese), stir.
  • Cover and cook on LOW for 8 hours.
  • Toward the end of the cooking time, prepare the noodles according to the package directions.
  • Once the noodles are cooked, drain them and add the to the sauce, stirring well.
  • Turn off the slow cooker immediately after adding the noodles, they will continue to cook if left on and will turn mushy.
  • Serve the pasta topped with parmesan cheese and enjoy!

How to Video


Calories: 299kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 35mg | Sodium: 1319mg | Potassium: 832mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 860IU | Vitamin C: 30mg | Calcium: 64mg | Iron: 4mg

Nutrition info is auto-generated. This information is an estimate; if you are on a special diet, please use your own calculations.

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Recipe Rating


  1. DJ says:

    The very first sentence says no precooking necessary, yet the recipe says to cook the spaghetti; I guess it means you don’t have to precook the meat. Can it be done without cooking the spaghetti first? How would you need to adapt the recipe? Thanks!

    1. Sarah Olson says:

      Hi! I don’t recommend cooking noodles in the slow cooker. They get chalky and mushy (the slow cooker never gets to a full boiling point). Though you can, if you want. At the end probably for 30 minutes.

  2. Beverly says:

    Trying it right now and doing it in four
    hours and not cooking the dry spaghetti
    first ! Also dropped in fresh basil!
    I use pecorino Romano rather than
    Let you know how it turns out! Thanks

  3. Jasmine L Richardson says:

    You’re a life saver. Love your recipes!!

  4. Aimee Mellich says:

    oh thank goodness I was just going to ask about the four hours and it’s already in the pot seems to be working just fine though I added baby spinach leaves and cauliflower curds and I only had one jar of Newman’s in the pantry so I supplemented with some bruschetta and it’s really working so far I’ll update you in the end after everyone eats & how the 4 hrs works out thank you

  5. Yvonne Bugeja says:

    Hi Sarah. This looks delish. Do you think I could do it on high for 4 hours? I’m thinking of doing it for tonight and I don’t have that much time for it to be ready.

    1. Sarah Olson says:

      I think that would work fine!

  6. Laura Cunningham says:

    Hi Sarah… I just made this today and it really is a great recipe. The sausage is a nice, different touch to my “normal” spaghetti.

    I do have one inquiry, if you will. I couldn’t find Newman’s Own Marinara in 16 oz… Just 24 oz. so I just bought the one jar and used it. Where to find 16 oz. jars?

    1. Sarah Olson says:

      I’m glad you liked it. I found mine at Fred Meyer (Kroger). You can use any brand of marinara. 🙂

    2. Sarah Olson says:

      Hi Laura! It is supposed to be 24 ounce jars, my mistake. I went to make it again today and noticed. Apparently it’s an adaptable recipe!

  7. Denise says:

    I love slow cooker recipes…..but there are only 2 of us to cook for now. Would it work if I cut the recipe in half? I do have a 4 qt. crockpot.

    1. Sarah Olson says:

      I think cutting it in half would work fine 🙂

    2. Bonnie says:

      Can you freeze leftovers? And if so how long. Id love to double batch and freeze for pop in company

  8. Karen Downs says:

    looks yummy Sara. Can’t wait to try it. All your recipes look great

    1. Sarah Olson says:

      Thank you Karen 🙂