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Homemade Four Cheese Ravioli Recipe

There is nothing quite like homemade Cheese Ravioli. Light tender pasta pillows are filled with a creamy combination of ricotta cheese, Parmigiano Reggiano, Pecorino Romano, and mozzarella.  “Delicious” doesn’t even begin to describe how good fresh ravioli truly is!  The whole family will agree!

A bowl of ravioli with tomato sauce topped with basil leaves.

I am not going to lie, making your own homemade ravioli is a labor of love!  But the end product is so worth the effort it takes to make it.  No grocery store pasta or frozen ravioli comes even close to the light tender texture of fresh pasta.  And the filling has so much more cheesy goodness than the store-bought varieties.  

Ravioli is more versatile then you might think. During the fall months we enjoy a Butternut Squash Ravioli tossed in a Pancetta and Sage Butternut Squash Ravioli Sauce just to change things up and keep with the season.

Of course we all love to top it with tomato sauce, but why not branch out and try other toppings like in this Carbonara Ravioli. You will love how this silky sauce coats your ravioli.

Made ahead cheese ravioli makes a great freezer meal.  So, I like to double or triple the recipe and freeze it. This makes it easy to prepare delicious but easy meals even on busy weeknights! 

I have included step by step instructions for making the fresh pasta dough as well as the filling.  This is a basic 3-ingredient pasta recipe that you can use to make fettuccini, linguini, spaghetti, lasagna, tortellini, cappelletti and of course ravioli!

Ingredients for making cheese ravioli on a wooden background: Eggs, parsley, grated cheese, mozzarella, ricotta and flour.

Ingredients

Pasta

Whole Eggs: I recommend that you let the eggs come to room temperature before you begin.  They will blend into the flour so much easier.  

“00” Flour:  This is a finely ground Italian flour that is typically used to make pasta and pizza.  It creates a chewier dough than all-purpose flour.  If you can’t find “00” flour, you can absolutely substitute all-purpose flour.   

Salt: You will only need a pinch of regular table salt.

Filling

Ricotta Cheese:  Whole milk or part skim ricotta can be used.  I do suggest that you drain the ricotta to remove as much liquid as possible. The ricotta can be placed in a fine mesh sieve lined with a cheese cloth and placed in the refrigerator to drain for several hours.

Parmesan Cheese:  Grated parmesan adds a nutty flavor to the filling.

Pecorino Romano: Grated Romano.  You can substitute all Parmesan if you don’t have Romano cheese and vice versa.  Romano is saltier than parmesan so you are only using Romano you may need to cut back on the salt.

Mozzarella:  Shredded or grated whole milk or part skim.  

Eggs

Fresh Parsley: roughly chopped parsley adds brightens up the filling.

Salt and Black Pepper  

Helpful Equipment

I use a pasta machine to roll the dough out and a ravioli template to form ravioli in the perfect size and shape.  You don’t have to use a pasta machine or a form if you don’t have them, but it does make the process easier.  The pasta machine will quickly roll the dough to the almost paper-thin thickness that you want to achieve, but you can use a rolling pin like my Nonna did.

Step-by-Step Instructions

4 photos of making pasta dough: flour well with eggs, blending the eggs, pulling in the flour and a dough ball.

1. Make the Homemade Pasta Dough

  1. Pour the flour into a mound on your work surface and create a well in the middle.  Add the eggs, water, and a pinch of salt to the center of the well.  
  2. Using a fork or your fingers, mix the eggs, breaking them and pulling in a little of the flour at a time.  Continue to mix the eggs and adding in flour until you have created a shaggy dough.   
  3. Begin to knead the dough, continuing to add in more flour until the dough is yellow in color and tacky but no longer sticky.  If your dough seems too dry, you can knead in a few drops of water. The dough should spring back when you press it with your finger.  It will take about 10 minutes to knead the dough to the proper consistency.     
  4. Once the dough is done, wrap it in plastic wrap and let the dough rest for 30-60 minutes.
A clear bowl of cheese, ricotta, eggs and parsley.

2. Make the Cheese Filling

Mix the ricotta, parmesan, pecorino, mozzarella, egg, salt, pepper and parsley until it is well combined and set it aside while you roll out the pasta.

4 photos: stretching out dough, dough on a ravioli form, the dough with filling in each ravioli section and the last one of the top layer of dough added.

3. Roll Out the Ravioli Dough

  1. In a small bowl, beat an egg and set it aside. You will use this as an egg wash to seal the pasta together. Divide the dough into 6 even pieces. Work with one piece at a time and rewrap the remainder of the dough in the plastic warp to keep it from drying out.
  2. Set the pasta machine on the widest setting.  Flatten the dough with your hands so that it can fit in the pasta roller. Roll the dough through the machine and repeat this, continuing to reduce the settings on the pasta machine until the pasta sheet very thin and you can see your hands through dough.  I like to take it all the way to the thinnest setting.
  3. Flour the pasta sheet, set on cookie sheet or a floured surface and cover it with plastic wrap. Repeat this process with a second piece of dough. 

4. Assemble Using a Ravioli Form (see photo above)

  1. Lay 1 sheet of pasta dough on the bottom portion of the ravioli press and place the top of the press (this portion will fit into the bottom and will create the pocket for your filling) on the dough. Depending on how long your dough sheet is you may have to trim it so that it just hangs over the press.
  2. Remove the top of the ravioli press and fill each pocket with about ½ teaspoon of ricotta filling.
  3. Brush the second sheet of pasta with the egg wash and lay it on top of the press completely covering the edges. Press down on the dough around the inside edge of each ravioli to seal the dough and push out any air that is between the sheets.  Use a rolling pin to roll the dough against the press. Make sure that you use enough pressure to cut through the dough around each ravioli.
  4. Remove the excess dough from around the edges of the press and carefully pop the ravioli out.
4 photos of pasta dough with dollops of cheese filling, of the dough folded ove the filling, of 5 ravioli cut by hand and a baking sheet with all the ravioli laid in a single layer.

5. Assemble without a Form

  1. Lay the pasta sheet on a lightly dusted work surface and brush it with the egg wash. Drop dollops of the cheese filling about 1″ apart on the lower half of the pasta dough, leaving about a 1/4″ border along the bottom of the dough.  
  2. Fold the dough over the cheese mounds and use your fingers to carefully press down around the filling releasing the air and sealing the dough. 
  3. Use a sharp knife or a bench scraper to cut evenly between each mound.  You can leave the ravioli like this, or press a fork all around the edges to create a creased edge.

Dust the ravioli with flour and place it on a cookie sheet. Cover it with a plastic wrap while you continue making the remainder of your ravioli.

To cook the ravioli, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and drop the desired amount of ravioli into the water and cook it until they float to the top.  They should only take 3-4 minutes to cook.  Drain and serve with your favorite sauce.

What to Serve with Cheese Ravioli

Cheese ravioli is very versatile.  You can serve it with your favorite sauce or even a light broth.

Of course you can’t go wrong with my mom’s Tomato Sauce and Meatballs.  

For a simple but incredibly flavorful dish that you can have on the dinner table in under 30 minutes, top it with a carbonara sauce or a parmesan brown butter sauce. And if you want to really impress your guests, serve it with this amazing Lobster Sauce.

Make this your main course by adding a salad for a complete meal.

A white bowl of ravioli with tomato sauce and topped with basil leaves.

Storage and Freezing Instructions 

The ravioli can be cooked immediately, and any leftovers should be placed in an air-tight container and refrigerated. Properly stored it will last 3-4 days

As I mentioned homemade ravioli is a great make ahead dish.  Place the fresh ravioli in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze them for 30-40 minutes. After they are individually frozen you can transfer them to a freezer safe container or a freezer bag. The ravioli can be frozen for up to 6 months.  Cook the ravioli right from the freezer, no need to defrost them.

Try these traditional Italian recipes:

Easy Chunky Tomato Sauce

Spaghetti alla Carbonara

Nonna’s Pasta with Broccoli

Pasta con le Sarde

I love to get your feedback so if you tried this Homemade Cheese Ravioli or any other recipes on this website, please leave me a comment below.  I hope you enjoy our recipes and look forward to hearing from you!

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ravioli with sauce and basil

Homemade Four Cheese Ravioli

Home made ravioli filled with ricotta, parmigiana Reggiano, pecorino romano and mozzarella cheeses can be made ahead and frozen. These delicate little pasta pillows are a family favorite.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Rest the dough 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 45 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 8 servings
Calories 356 kcal

Equipment

  • Ravioli press
  • Pasta Machine or Mixer with a pasta attachment.

Ingredients
  

Pasta Dough

  • 3 cups Flour "00"
  • 4 Eggs large
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • Water optional, as needed

Four Cheese Filling

  • 16 oz Ricotta Cheese
  • 1 Egg beaten
  • ¼ cup Parmigiana Reggiano grated
  • ¼ cup Pecorino Romano grated
  • cup Mozzarella shredded
  • 1 tbsp. Parsley fresh, chopped
  • ¼ tsp. Salt
  • tsp. Black pepper ground

Egg wash

  • 1 Egg beaten

Instructions
 

Pasta Dough

  • Pour the flour into a mound on a work surface and create a well in the middle.
  • Add the eggs to the center of the flour well and sprinkle with a pinch of salt.
  • Using a fork mix the eggs breaking them up and stirring in a little of the flour from the edges of the well.
  • Continue stirring the eggs and pulling in the flour a little at a time until a shaggy ball of dough starts to form.
  • Using your hands combine the rest of the flour into the dough ball. Knead the dough taking up as much flour as the dough will take. If the dough feels too dry you can add a few drops of water.
  • Continue kneading the dough until it forms a smooth yolky colored ball of dough anywhere from 5-10 minutes. The dough is ready when it springs back up when you press it with your finger.
  • Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and set aside to rest for about 30-40 minutes.
  • Divide the dough into 6 even pieces. Work with one piece at a time and rewrap the remainder of the dough in the plastic warp to keep it from drying out.
  • Set the pasta machine on the widest setting. Flatten the dough so that it can fit in the pasta roller. Roll the dough through the machine and repeat this, continuing to reduce the settings on the pasta machine, until the pasta is paper thin and you can see your hands through the pasta dough.
  • Flour the pasta sheet, set on cookie sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Repeat with the rest of the dough.

Filling

  • Prepare the filling before you start to roll out the dough.
  • If your ricotta has any liquid in it you will want to drain it. You don't want the filling to be too wet.
  • Mix all of the ingredients together in a large bowl and stir well.

Assembling the Ravioli

  • Lay 1 sheet of pasta dough on the bottom portion of the ravioli press and place the top of the press (this portion will fit into the bottom and will create the pocket for your filling) on the dough. Depending on how long your dough sheet is you may have to trim it so that it just hangs over the press.
  • Remove the top of the ravioli press and fill each pocket with about ½ teaspoon of ricotta filling.
  • Brush another sheet of pasta with the egg wash and lay it on top of the press completely covering the edges of the press.
  • Use a rolling pin to roll the dough against the press. Make sure that you use enough pressure to cut through the dough around each ravioli.
  • Remove the excess dough around the edges of the press and carefully pop the ravioli out of the form.
  • Dust the ravioli with flour and place on a cookie sheet. Cover with plastic warp while you continue making the remainder of your ravioli.
  • The ravioli can be cooked immediately or you can place them on a cookie sheet in a single layer and freeze for 30-40 minutes. After they are individually frozen you can transfer them to a smaller container or a freezer bag. They can be frozen for up to 6 months.
  • To cook ravioli, bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt generously. Drop the desired number of ravioli into the water and cook until the ravioli float to the top of the pot, about 3 minutes. Drain and serve with your favorite sauce.

Nutrition

Serving: 8gCalories: 356kcalCarbohydrates: 38gProtein: 19gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 161mgSodium: 278mgPotassium: 176mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 655IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 240mgIron: 3mg
Keyword Four cheese ravioli, homemade pasta dough, ravioli, ricotta filled ravioli, cheese ravioli
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4 Comments

  1. Pingback: How to make Nonna's Meatballs and Tomato Sauce -
  2. 5 stars
    There is no substitute for homemade pasta. These ravioli are so tender and delicious it’s hard to stop eating them!!

    1. 5 stars
      I just made these ravioli with some home made sauce for lunch for my wife and I, and they are hands down the best ravioli I have ever had. Nothing compares to fresh home made food! I’ll be saving this recipe for sure.

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