Toasted raviolis from St Louis
Food & Drinks

St. Louis Fried Ravioli: A Must-eat when you travel Missouri

If you think of St-Louis, the first thing that will come to mind is the famous Arch, that most have seen, at least in pictures. Sports team also pop-up, since their hockey team won the Stanley Cup two years ago and their baseball team, the Cardinals, tend to be competitive most years. In terms of food, a few plates stand out, including the St-Louis fried raviolis. Here are four restaurants where you’ll find the best ones in the city, and a recipe so you can cook them “homemade style.”

Best Restaurants in St. Louis to eat Fried Ravioli

Finding a restaurant that serves fried ravioli in St-Louis is not difficult. Discovering the right one, can be more complicated. That is why we have decided to present you with some of the best locations to try this special meal, so you can really appreciate it. Here they are, in no particular order; whichever you choose, you should come out a satisfied customer.

Mama’s on the Hill

We liked the name so much that we decided to place it first on the list. And according to the legend, it might very well be the first restaurant in St-Louis to have served this dish. The story says that one evening, the chef of the restaurant dropped some ravioli in boiling oil. Instead of throwing them out, they served them to the customers, sitting at the bar. They loved it so much that owners decided to keep it on the menu and it became an instant favourite. (the Hill is an Italian neighbourhood)

Charlie Gitto’s

Feeling like a romantic evening (or you just don’t want to see your partner clearly)? Then head on to Charlie Gitto’s where the lights are turned down low for lovers to whispers to each other, while enjoying Italian cuisine. When you walk in, it feels like the place is holding onto a special secret. And indeed, it does: It serves some of the best fried ravioli in the city!

Trattoria Marcella

If dark places are not your thing and you prefer a celebration mood, then Trattoria Marcella will do the trick for you. It is also the right choice if you have a small appetite. During the 5 to 7 Happy Hour, you can order an appetizer of fried ravioli. They will serve you three pieces that you can dip into marinara sauce. However, we strongly suggest that you eat a whole plate of them. They are simply too good to stop at three…

Lombardo’s Trattoria

Again, if small portions are not your thing, skip the previous restaurant and head directly to Lombardo’s Trattoria. Why? They have the particularity of serving the largest fried ravioli in the whole city of St-Louis. They are handmade and deep-fried exactly the way they should be. But there is no way you will be able to put an entire one in your mouth at once. You will need a knife and fork to eat these raviolis which are literally fist size. In fact, they have the same shape as a calzone (pizza) and filled with delicious meat. They are served in marinara sauce, on which customers can sprinkle Romano cheese, to their liking.

St-Louis Fried Ravioli Recipe

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Serving for 6 people


2 tablespoons whole milk

1 egg

¾ cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs

½ teaspoon salt (optional)

½ (25 ounces) package frozen cheese ravioli, thawed

3 cups vegetable oil for frying

1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese

1 (16 ounces) jar spaghetti sauce


First step:

Take two bowls. In one, mix the milk with the egg. In the other one, place the breadcrumbs mixed with salt. Take the ravioli you bought at the store and dip them, one by one into the first bowl, before coating them with the breadcrumb mixture.

Second step:

Take a large saucepan and fill it with marinara sauce. Heat at medium strength until it starts making bubbles, reduce the heat to minimum and let it simmer a while.

Third step:

Pour oil into a large pan until it reaches a level of two inches. Heat at medium strength and throw bread crumbs in it, to see if it is ready. If it turns brown rapidly, you can start. Take a little ravioli and place it in the pan. Let them fry one minute, then turn them around and let them fry again for the same amount of time. They should take on a golden colour before you take them out and place them on a paper towel to drain.

Fourth Step:

Place the raviolis in separate serving plates before covering them with marinara sauce and sprinkling them with parmesan cheese. Serve warm.

Whether you decide to try them in a restaurant or to cook them yourself at home, be aware that fried ravioli can become quite addictive. Their taste is so great that you’ll keep coming back for more.

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