Lasagna + soup + crock pot = genius. What more could we ask of a dinner recipe? Courtesy of Phyllis Good’s new book, Stock the Crock, this recipe is nothing short of brilliant. Read on for the full scoop and then check out her book by clicking here.

You’ll need a 5 qt. slow cooker
Serves 4 to 5
Prep : 15 to 30 minutes
Cook : 5 1⁄4 to 6 3⁄4 hours

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

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 before serving, 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.

Pro 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.

Do your kids love lasagna and soup as much as ours do? Will this recipe become a part of your dinner rotation? Leave us a comment below!

Phyllis Good is the most trusted name for slow-cooker recipes. According to the New York Times, her books have sold more copies in the US than the combined works of popular Food Network hosts Ina Garten, Giada De Laurentiis, and Jamie Oliver. With her new cookbook Stock the Crock (Oxmoor House, September 2017, $21.99), Good has compiled 100 delicious must-have recipes as well as 200 easy-to-follow variations for any dietary preference (gluten-free, paleo, vegan, etc.). Crowd-sourced from Good’s massive fan base and tried-and-tested by Good herself, the recipes in this book promise to be made time and again.

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.