The Store-Bought Shortcut For Delicious Ravioli

If you have a hankering for ravioli, the easiest way to get it on the table is to buy a pre-made fresh or frozen version, of course. However, the flavors of the fillings can be limited. Making fresh pasta is an option, but it's a time-consuming one. So when you want to get creative with your pasta filling but may be lacking on time, reach for fresh lasagna sheets from the grocery store.

Using fresh lasagna sheets is a super simple way to craft your own ravioli and make a meal in a short amount of time. Just place a sheet on a lightly floured work surface and use a sharp knife or pizza cutter to slice it into even-sized squares. Then, place the filling inside. Use your fingers to dab water along the inside edges of the pasta or use a pastry brush to apply an egg wash. Then, fold over and press the edges together. Then repeat until all of the filling has been used.

Alternatively, you can also make round ravioli. Just use a water glass, lid from a jar, or large round cookie cutter to make the pasta rounds. Place a small amount of filling in the center of one of the circles of pasta before applying the water or egg wash around the edges. Cover with another pasta round and press to seal. If you use this method, you can save your pasta scraps in the fridge or freezer to use for other pasta-based dishes.

Tips for making ravioli with store-bought lasagna sheets

First, pay attention to the amount of filling you're using — overfilling will make it challenging to seal the pasta around it. You can easily just use a small spoon, but a piping bag can be a helpful tool to use, too, for fillings with a creamy consistency. Then, once the filling has been added, make sure to firmly seal the pasta. Don't skip using water or egg wash before sealing the pasta shut and when sealing, press gently around the filling to eliminate any trapped air.

When cooking the ravioli, remember that fresh pasta takes significantly less time than dried pasta. Once you've dropped the ravioli into the boiling water it should only take a few minutes to cook. You'll know that the ravioli are ready to be removed when they rise to the top of the boiling water. To infuse the most flavor into your ravioli, use a spider strainer to transfer the ravioli from the water directly into the pan of warmed sauce it will be served in. This will allow the hot pasta to absorb some of the sauce's flavor.

Other things to make with store-bought lasagna sheets

If you have leftover pasta sheets there are numerous other easy ways to put this pasta to work outside of making ravioli or, of course, a traditional lasagna. Try incorporating it into a brunch or holiday gathering by making a breakfast lasagna layered with eggs, cheese, and sausage or bacon.

You can also slice it lengthwise, spread a filling over top of it, and roll it up to make lasagna rolls. Just cover them with sauce and bake for an incredibly easy way to enjoy the flavors and comfort of lasagna without all the work. For an even easier way to channel all the goodness of the Italian comfort food, make a tomato-based lasagna soup that incorporates all of the ingredients you love in lasagna, and use sliced lasagna sheets for the noodles. Or, for parties, create individual lasagna cups. Place sliced lasagna sheets in a muffin tin, and simply fill it with a combination of meats, vegetables, sauce, and cheese. You can also season and bake them to make a unique style of crackers to serve with flavorful dips or cheeses.

And while there are plenty of savory dishes to be made with lasagne sheets, they can be repurposed for desserts, too. Use them to make a sweet kugel or transform your apple pie ingredients into an apple lasagna.