This Baked Ravioli is the ultimate comfort food dinner, and it’s incredibly easy to make!
It’s a make-ahead meal that’s also freezer friendly, making it the perfect go-to option for busy weeknights.
Simply make the quick marinara sauce, assemble, and bake. This baked ravioli will have the whole family coming back for seconds!
If you love pasta and cheese, this one’s for you! This amazing baked ravioli is layered with a hearty marinara sauce, creamy ricotta, and perfectly melted mozzarella cheese. It’s a true favorite in our family!
It’s like a fusion between ravioli and lasagna, making it the perfect choice if you can’t decide between the two.
Why we LOVE this cheesy Baked Ravioli:
- Super easy to make! Assembling is pretty straightforward. We use a few shortcuts to make this recipe as simple as possible.
- So cheesy! The ricotta cheese adds a touch of creaminess, and the mozzarella cheese makes it perfectly cheesy.
- Make-ahead friendly: Assemble in advance and bake later. Great for busy weeknights!
- Freezer-friendly: Freeze it unbaked and enjoy it whenever you crave comfort food.
A Simple Dinner Recipe
There’s nothing complicated about this baked ravioli. It’s really like what they call a “lazy lasagna” because it isn’t quite like a lasagna, but resembles one due to all the layering.
It starts with a meat marinara sauce that takes just 10 minutes to make. Assembling takes just 5 minutes and it’s pretty straightforward – there’s no need to pre-cook the ravioli. The hardest part is waiting because it does need to bake for 35 minutes, but I always use that time to clean up my kitchen anyway. It’s a win-win!
This is the kind of meal you can assemble up to 2 days in advance and bake later. Or freeze it for up to 3 months, that way you can satisfy your comfort food craving any time!
Fresh vs. Frozen Ravioli
You can use fresh or frozen ravioli to make this baked ravioli dish. If using frozen, give it an extra 10 minutes in the oven. It works beautifully either way!
I personally like to use store-bought fresh ravioli better – I like the taste better. My go-to are Rana or Buitoni brands cheese ravioli, depending on what’s on sale.
The ingredients in this baked ravioli recipe are pretty easy to find. Because this is meant to be a simple recipe, we use a few shortcuts like store-bought marinara and prepared pasta.
- Ground beef: For the meat marinara sauce. You can also use Italian sausage, turkey, pork, or a combination. Or for a meatless option, leave out the meat.
- Diced onions and minced garlic: For the sauce.
- Store-bought marinara sauce: A 24-ounce jar will be enough for about 4 to 6 servings.
- Dried Italian seasoning: For the sauce.
- Fresh basil: This is optional, but I like the fresh flavors it adds to the sauce.
- Ravioli: I use Rana or Buitoni brands’ fresh ravioli, which come in the refrigerated section. Frozen works too. Use any flavor you like.
- Shredded mozzarella cheese: I use pre-shredded whole milk mozzarella. No need to grate your own cheese for this recipe.
- Ricotta cheese: Adds a touch of creaminess.
- Olive oil, salt, and pepper
Making cheesy baked ravioli at home is as easy as 1, 2, 3! Below is a quick tutorial on how to make it. As always, you can find the full recipe in the recipe card down below.
Step 1 | Make the sauce
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a sauté pan, brown the ground beef over medium high heat. Push the cooked beef to the side, and then sauté the onions and garlic with some olive oil until fragrant. Stir in the marinara, Italian seasoning, and basil (if using). Season with salt and pepper. Simmer for about 5 minutes. Set aside.
Step 2 | Assemble
Assembling takes less than 5 minutes. Here’s how to do it:
- Add a layer of the prepared sauce in a medium baking pan. Arrange the uncooked ravioli on top in a single layer.
- Top with more sauce.
- Then add a layer of ricotta and mozzarella.
- Repeat with another layer of ravioli, sauce, and the cheeses. Make sure most of the top is covered with sauce and mozzarella.
Step 3 | Bake
Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees F for 35 to 40 minutes until bubbly and melted. Uncover and broil for just 1 or 2 minutes until slightly golden brown on top.
Let cool for 5 to 10 minutes before serving. And there you have it – cozy baked ravioli for dinner!
Make Ahead and Freezing
Make ahead: Let the sauce cool completely. Assemble as directed, cover, and refrigerate (unbaked) for up to 2 days. When ready to serve, bake as directed, adding an extra 10 minutes to the baking time.
Freezing: Let the sauce cool completely. Assemble as directed, cover with multiple layers of foil, and freeze (unbaked) for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight. Bake as directed, adding an extra 10 to 15 minutes to the baking time, or until warm in the center.
You may also freeze in smaller portions, which will make it much faster to reheat in the oven.
Baked ravioli is a very versatile recipe. There are so many ways to customize it, and here are some of my favorites:
- If you decide to skip the meat, there’s no need to simmer the sauce. Simply skip that step and start assembling with the sauce straight from the jar.
- Add-ins: Pack some veggies into the marinara! Add zucchini, spinach, mushrooms, etc.
- Use Italian sausage, ground turkey, ground pork (or a combination) instead of beef.
- Choose your favorite ravioli filling! I love cheese ravioli, but any will work.
- Add a little bit of heavy cream to the sauce for extra creaminess. It will also help offset the acidity of the tomatoes.
Pairing and Serving Ideas
I always serve this baked ravioli dish with bread. When I’m busy, I just grab some frozen bread from the store and pop it in the oven. But if you have extra time in your hands, try my easy Cheesy Garlic Bread, Garlic Herb Dinner Rolls, or Honey Butter Rolls.
Looking for more comforting pasta recipes? Give these a try:
- Rigatoni Bolognese
- Chicken Broccoli Alfredo
- Spinach Stuffed Shells
- Baked Italian Sausage Pasta
- Lasagna Bolognese with No-Boil Noodles
- Skillet Lasagna
Yes, but add an extra 5 to 10 minutes in the baking time until warm in the center.
Yes! Up to 3 or 4 days in advance. Refrigerate and use when ready to assemble.
Yes, cover and refrigerate the assembled dish (unbaked) for up to 3 days. Bake as directed, adding an extra 5 minutes or so.
Yes, but it will take a long time. I’d recommend thawing overnight first. Or you could pre-portion it and then baking from frozen will be much faster.
Tips for Success
- There is no need to pre-cook the ravioli, whether you use fresh or frozen.
- Use your favorite fresh or frozen ravioli. If using frozen, bake for an additional 5-10 minutes.
- This is a great make-ahead and freezer friendly recipe, which comes in handy during busy weeknights. See instructions in the recipe card down below.
- I like to broil the baked ravioli at the end to give it a nice golden brown color on top. Broiling is quick, 1 to 2 minutes are enough, so keep an eye on it.
Cheesy Baked Ravioli
- 1 pound ground beef
- Olive oil
- ½ cup small-diced yellow onion
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 (24-ounce) jar marinara sauce
- 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil - optional
- 20 ounces store-bought cheese ravioli, uncooked - fresh or frozen, see notes below
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese - plus more as needed
- ¾ cup ricotta cheese
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Make the sauce: In a medium skillet, brown the ground beef over medium-high heat. Push the beef to the side of the pan, add a few drizzles of olive oil and sauté the onions and garlic until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the marinara sauce, Italian seasoning, and basil. Mix to combine and simmer uncovered over medium-low heat for 3 to 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Assemble: To the bottom of a medium baking pan, add a layer of sauce. Then arrange the ravioli in a single layer, follow by more sauce, some of the ricotta, and mozzarella cheese. Repeat to build another layer. Make sure most of the top layer is covered with sauce and mozzarella.
- Bake: Cover with foil and bake for 35 minutes until bubbly and hot. If using frozen ravioli, add an extra 5 to 10 minutes until warm in the center. Uncover and broil for 1 to 2 minutes until slightly golden brown on top.
- Let cool slightly and serve. Enjoy!
- If using frozen ravioli, bake for an additional 5-10 minutes.
- Make ahead: Let the meat marinara cool completely. Assemble, cover, and refrigerate (unbaked) for up to 2 days. Then, bake as directed, adding an extra 10 minutes.
- Freezing instructions: Assemble, cover with multiple layers of foil, and freeze unbaked for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge and bake as directed, adding an extra 10 minutes.
- Refrigerate leftovers for 3 to 4 days.
- Ravioli: Use fresh or frozen ravioli, any flavors.
- Ground beef: Italian sausage, ground turkey, ground pork, or a combination.