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How to Make Homemade Ravioli. All You Need is a Rolling Pin. Easy Pasta Making Instructions and Tips!

Updated on January 7, 2009
http://www.flickr.com/photos/stuart_spivack/328689897/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/stuart_spivack/328689897/

You can make homemade ravioli in your kitchen tonight. You probably have the ingredients you need on hand and if you have a rolling pin then you have all the fancy equipment you need.

Homemade ravioli is a fantastic special occasion treat. It tastes great, is a lovely platform for your creative filling ideas and it always comes out tasting very fine. Your homemade ravioli may not look professionally perfect, but I think that's all part of the charm, and whatever they happen to look – ravioli rolled on your kitchen counter will always impress.

You can find a zillion recipes on the net for ravioli filling and sauces, so I won't go into any detail on that front here. What you will get here (if you read on) are the basic instructions for making a pasta dough, for rolling out the ravioli sheets and for filling the dough pockets. There is nothing very challenging technically, but it will require a little elbow grease and an hour or so at the kitchen counter.

Homemade Pasta Dough (this can be used for any type of fresh pasta, not only for ravioli)

This ingredients list is very loose, and you should play with the proportions until you get a nice soft and supple dough. If the dough is very firm and hard to knead – add more egg yolks or water. If the dough is too soft and sticky to knead, add a little more flour until you can work with it. Don’t worry about it much, as long as you can knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic then you will be better than fine.

  • 3 cups of flour
  • 5 egg yolks
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Enough water to make a smooth dough (if needed)
  1. Beat the egg yolks and add them and the salt to a mixing bowl already filled with flour. Use your hands and mix to form a dough. If you can’t get all the flour hydrated into a dough, add more water until you can form a nice firm but sticky dough.
  2. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes, or until it is smooth and stretchy. Although you can roll out the ravioli sheets immediately, letting the dough rest for 20 minutes or more allows the proteins in the dough to relax and makes rolling much easier. Rest the dough covered under the mixing bowl so it won't dry out too much.

Rolling out the Ravioli Pasta Sheets

  1. OK, once you have rested your dough, tear off a bigger than golf ball smaller than baseball sized hunk. Flatten it out with your rolling pin and start to roll. The dough will be sticky, so you will need a bowl of flour on hand. Sprinkle a little flour on the table and on the dough and roll it firmly a few times. After a few good rolls, lift the dough sheet off of the counter and flip it over, adding a little more flour onto the counter and onto the dough sheet as necessary. Use as little flour as you can get away with, but always keep the dough sheet loose and sliding on the counter.
  2. Keep rolling and flipping and rolling and flipping until you get a dough that is paper thin. This will take a little while and a little effort, but it's worth it. You want to be able to see your hand through the dough when you lift it off of the counter. Don't worry if your dough sheet is irregularly shaped – it won’t matter.

Cutting and Filling the Ravioli.

OK, once you have rolled out a sheet of dough nice and thinly, give your rolling arms a break and cut out your ravioli shapes.

  1. I like to use a water glass as a mold (About 3-4 inches in diameter). Invert the glass and press down on the dough with the top of the glass. Trace a knife point around the dough until you have cut out a circle of pasta (cookie cutter style). Repeat, cutting as many pasta circles as you can from your sheet of dough.
  2. Take the scraps that you have cut from around the glass mold and add them back into your (Covered) dough ball for future rolling.

Filling the Ravioli

  1. So now you have a counter filled with cut-out circles of dough. In the center of each circle, place about a teaspoon of your filling. Use as much filling as you can get away with and still be able to close of the ravioli well.
  2. In a bowl, beat an egg and then using your finger, spread a little beaten egg around the outside of the pasta circle. This beaten egg is the glue that will seal the folded over pasta circle into a finished ravioli.
  3. Fold the pasta circle over the filling and press the top down into the bottom, crimping with your fingers to fuse the dough and form a seal. Try to work from one side to the other, squeezing the air out as you go.
  4. Once you have filled all your circles and crimped them into ravioli, place them on a floured baking sheet and start rolling your next ball of dough into a pasta sheet.

If you plan on making these in advance, place the baking sheet full of finished ravioli (in one layer only) in the freezer. Once the ravioli have frozen solid, you can transfer them into a Tupperware style container and continue to freeze them until ready to use. When ready to eat them, drop the frozen ravioli directly into boiling water for 4 or 5 minute, and then toss with sauce.

It takes work, this can’t be denied, but it's not very difficult and there is something sort of Zen like about rolling and filling a batch of ravioli – you get into the ravioli zone and kind of drift in the moment!

A perfect dish for a lazy weekend afternoon – and these are more fun when made with a partner.

See below for some links to recipe ideas for fillings and sauces for your homemade ravioli!

Enjoy

Video demo of ravioli making

Filled with Whatever You've Got!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/stuart_spivack/1409729343/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/stuart_spivack/1409729343/

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    • christine almaraz profile image

      christine almaraz 8 years ago from colorado springs

      I've always wanted to try to make homemade pasta but it always seemed a bit intimidating. Your hub makes it look pretty easy so I'm gonna give it try. I bought a pasta roller that I've never used...no time like the present! Thanks for the instructions.

    • dorbledog profile image

      dorbledog 8 years ago from Spokane, WA

      I need to try that sometime. I have a great idea for a ravioli filling, and a sauce, but I just need to sit down and do it sometime.

    • profile image

      louise 7 years ago

      Watching the video brought back old memories to when my gandmom did the same with her ravioli. Thank you, and thank your grandmom for being so kind.

    • samanthagardner profile image

      samanthagardner 7 years ago from Palm Beach Gardens, FL

      This hub makes me want to go cook. Thanks!

    • profile image

      Robyn 7 years ago

      How do we cook it if we are not planning on making them ahead of time. If they are not frozen, do I still boil them for 4-5 minutes?

    • John D Lee profile image
      Author

      John D Lee 7 years ago

      HI Robyn,

      If boiling fresh ravioli - all you need to do is heat the filling and cook the noodles, which only takes 2 or 3 minutes, depending on how thinly the pasta was rolled and how thickly the ravioli was stuffed. I find the best way is just to fish one ravioli out of the pot after a couple of minutes, to taste for doneness.

    • apricotmousse profile image

      apricotmousse 7 years ago

      Informative hub. Thanks for sharing those simple tips to make ravioli.

    • profile image

      Andy C 7 years ago

      Worked like a charm thought I would highly recommend a pasta machine to roll - very time consuming. My first time and it was off the hook.

    • profile image

      dantemom 7 years ago

      Great video. Makes me miss my grandmother and Aunt Nettie. I'm making raviolis for Easter and it was good to actually watch someone do it to get a "feel" for how it's done.

      Great family document for future generations, too. Well done. Some of the smaller titles were difficult to read, btw, but well done nonetheless.

    • profile image

      Jenny 6 years ago

      I didn't even have time to watch the video, but just following the instructions, my ravioli came out perfect!! Only needed to boil about 2 minutes. I don't have a pasta machine so had to roll by hand, and the entire process only took a couple of hours.

    • profile image

      gordo 6 years ago

      worked but tasted like elmers glue

    • profile image

      gordo's friend 6 years ago

      yep, im afraid to try mine....better looking than the other recipe i tried....sorry it tastes like elmers glue, hope mine isn't the same way :( :)

    • profile image

      Maiaa 6 years ago

      My mom won't let me make some... How long does it take???

    • profile image

      Ray 6 years ago

      should i use self-rising flour or all-purpose flour for the dough?

    • profile image

      Susan 6 years ago

      Fabulous! I have been making homemade ravioli for Christmas Eve dinner for quite a few years and I enjoy everything about it except making them on Christmas Eve day! Now I feel confident that I can make them ahead of time.

      Thank you.

    • profile image

      patty 6 years ago

      No, do not use self-rising flour. I use 1 part semalina flour to 2 parts all purpose. Semalina can be bought at any ethnic store. It makes the pasta more firm. If you can't find semalina, all purpose will work fine. If your dough is pastey it's too wet...add four. The firmer the dough the better it is to work with. A pasta machine works best...I put my final thickness to 6.

    • profile image

      Blair 6 years ago

      This looks like fun. I'm going to give it a try. Thanks for the inspiration.

    • profile image

      Tracy 6 years ago

      Great dough recipe. I roll the dough in to a large circle, spread filling , fold in half , then use a large wood yard stick to form raviolis. Just cut on the lines. Saves a lot of time and turns out great

    • John D Lee profile image
      Author

      John D Lee 6 years ago

      That's a great ravioli making tip, Tracy - thanks!

    • profile image

      Kevin 6 years ago

      Not bad. Made a crab filling. The ravioli was firm and very good.

    • profile image

      Callum 6 years ago

      How many does it serve?

    • profile image

      Kody 6 years ago

      Thanks for the great recipe!!! I love to cook so this turned out great!!!

    • Sun-Girl profile image

      Sun-Girl 5 years ago from Nigeria

      Wowooo, what an interesting article you shared in here. Thanks fro writing this, i enjoyed it a lot.

    • profile image

      fred the Obscure 5 years ago

      greetings All,

      I have just been given an Atlas roller with ravioli attachment - and no instruction book! :(

      I managed to roll dough out, yet the ravioli cutter thing was a nightmare, and abandoned fairly quickly.

      Any body with any idea on how to use it?

      Although, after watching the video it doesn't look difficult to do it by hand.

      Thank you for any input. I'll keep an eye onnthis site for comments,

      Ta,

      Fred the Obscure,

      Durban, South Africa.

    • profile image

      Emmanuela 5 years ago

      Thanks so much. And as a bonus from your video, I am now fluent in Italian.

    • profile image

      Vineaux's Mom 5 years ago

      Much appreciated several years after your post! I just bought a bag of Bob's Red Mill Semolina Flour and have been too timid to approach making ravioli - until now! I don't have a pasta machine so will use the rolling pin. I appreciate the idea of using the reserved semolina flour to dust the board, etc. Can't wait to make them tomorrow!

      -Renee in Oregon

    • profile image

      Patricia in Canada 5 years ago

      I have another tip to roll the dough to do the ravioli: roll a long rectangle large enough to include the filling and to be able to flip the empty part of the dough over it. Before flipping the dough, but water or beaten eggs between the filling. Cut between the ravioli one the other part of the dough is flipped. Press each side of the ravioli to seal (with your fingers or fork).

    • profile image

      katie 5 years ago

      This is really good! i made it with moose meat instead and used herb and garlic cream cheese as a sauce!

    • profile image

      Pasta lover 5 years ago

      I always believe that homemade food is fresher, healthier and always be delicious.

    • profile image

      Sara in Washington 5 years ago

      My son requested homemade ravioli for his 11th birthday. It's late and tomorrow's Thanksgiving, but your instructions and video make it seem do-able. Thank you for your very sweet write up and video!

    • profile image

      TroubleJo 5 years ago

      I made ravioli for the first time. I wasn't happy with the dough. It was tough, not like my mom's, that used to melt in my mouth. I am thinking I didn't knead enough, I didn't know what the dough should look like. Any suggestions. I am thinking of buying a pasta machine, but money is low. I did enjoy them, but missed my mom's.

    • profile image

      5 years ago

      I tried to make them last night, but the dough just wouldn't roll out. I even had my husband 6 foot plus try it and he gave up to. Very sad.

    • thesingernurse profile image

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Ravioli is my ultimate favorite especially if it's made with a three-cheese feeling. Eating it sends me to some blissful place! Stumbling upon your hub makes me wonder if I can do my own version of three-cheese ravioli at home... And with your clear directions, I think I'd be able to manage.

      Thank you very much for coming up with this hub. Voted up and shared this one! :)

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 5 years ago from California

      You have inspired me!

    • profile image

      Samantha 5 years ago

      Im kind of nervous about making this for the first time, but its been something that I have been wanting to do for a while now! Looks like I will be giving it a try tommorow, seems how a lot of people said it turned out great. Thanks for the tips and recipes!!

    • profile image

      Bonoh1 5 years ago

      Oh wow! I feel like I have been allowed to learn a precious family secret! I cannot wait to try this! Thank you thank you thank you!

    • profile image

      Suzie 4 years ago

      A great video... I miss so many of our deceased relatives & friends though even more now who used to LOVE to cook such great Italian food, etc....

      Such a good job; Bella!

    • profile image

      Sue 4 years ago

      I must admit that is pretty amazing and inspirational recipy and video! Thank you very much for this! xxx

    • profile image

      non member 4 years ago

      I'm sure it's just my settings ...BUT...I see no option to print the recipe

    • profile image

      lydia 4 years ago

      Such good memories, as a little girl our great grandmother lived wih us and I remember her sitting at the table making homemade raviolis. The grandmother in this video reminded me of her.I going to make homemade raviolis today. Thank you!!!

    • profile image

      Amelia 4 years ago

      How many does it serve? I need to feed 4 people

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