Italian Cooking Recipes & Pasta

Italian cooking recipes rely on simple, yet precise cooking techniques and exceptional ingredients.

This collection of Italian cooking recipes, Italian pasta cooking school lessons and culinary techniques is designed to get you off to a great start in Italian cooking.

The premium Cooking School lessons cover everything from selecting quality-dried pasta, learning how to make pasta properly, to making fresh Italian pasta using a pasta machine.

These Italian cooking recipes will help you learn how to make a classic Italian Tomato Sauce, the perfect Chicken Saltimbocca, fresh Homemade Potato Gnocchi, Pizza, Spaghetti Aglio e Olio or even Mario Batali’s Lasagne alla Bolognese al Forno and Fresh Stuffed Ravioli.

There’s also a lot of great Italian cooking technique videos and video cooking tips to help you out. Are you ready?

Instructional Video & Text Recipes

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Homemade Potato Gnocchi

An easy-to-make Italian delicacy: hand-made potato gnocchi that melts in your mouth.

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Basic Tomato Sauce

Just a few simple ingredients: olive oil, onion, garlic, quality tomato paste and tomatoes make up this healthy and very flavourful sauce.

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Pizza Four Ways

Four delicious pizzas: caramelized onions and goat cheese, lemon and cheese, Serrano ham and a simple margarita. These lightly-topped, thin and crispy pizzas are some of our favorites.

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Spaghetti Aglio e Olio

Garlic, extra-virgin olive oil, red chili flakes and quality pasta make up this delectable dish.

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Chicken Parmigiana | Pollo alla Parmigiana

Golden pieces of lightly breaded chicken breast are baked in a homemade tomato sauce and topped with mozzarella cheese.

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Chicken Saltimbocca

Layered with prosciutto, sage and melted cambozola, this tender chicken dish is finished in a sexy sauce.

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Mario Batali's Ragu Bolognese

This classic ragu Bolognese consists of vegetables, veal, pork and pancetta which are slow-cooked with milk, white wine and just a hint of tomato paste.

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Mario Batali's Lasagne alla Bolognese al Forno

Paper-thin lasagna noodles layered with besciamella, ragu Bolognese and Parmigiano-Reggiano.

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Mario Batali's Green Pasta Dough

Beautifully-green, fresh spinach pasta. "Making your own pasta is not difficult to make, nor does it take much time, and I can guarantee you that it will change the way you think about food, pasta and life." Mario Batali

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Mario Batali's Besciamella

A silky-smooth Italian white sauce consisting of butter, flour, milk and nutmeg.

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Antipasto Platter

Head to your nearest Italian deli and create your own antipasto masterpiece.

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Warm Figs with Cambozola and Balsamic

A delicious, seasonal appetizer. Warm figs with melted cambozola cheese are drizzled with a balsamic vinegar reduction.

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Italian Brodo

Delicate tortellini and Italian brodo (broth) are a match made in heaven.

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Spinach-Ricotta Ravioli

Tender, delicate pasta filled with fresh spinach and ricotta.

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Italian White Bean Soup

Velvety cannellini beans make up this mild and extremely versatile Italian soup.

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Spaghetti and Meatballs alla Nonna

These are Grandma's meatballs - okay not my Grandmothers, but they are still delicious. Milk-soaked bread is the secret to these tender and tasty meatballs, which are made with a mixture of beef, pork and veal.

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Basic Pizza Dough

This straightforward, light and crispy, homemade pizza dough is so easy to make, you'll steer away from take out.

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Pesto

This beautiful, fresh pesto is packed with flavor.

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Tiramisu Recipe

A heavenly dessert made with Italian lady fingers, Mascarpone cheese and espresso.

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Panzanella Salad

This Italian summer salad is vibrant and delicious. Ripe tomatoes, crunchy bread and fragrant basil are tossed together with a simple, refreshing vinaigrette.

Cooking Video Tips

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How to Choose Quality Canned Tomatoes

All canned tomatoes are not created equal. Many cans contain preservatives and a lot of salt. Here we will show you how to choose the best canned tomatoes so you can enjoy the best tomato flavor.

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The Quality of Extruded, Dried Pasta

This instructional cooking video on The Quality of Extruded, Dried Pasta , is part of the Rouxbe Cooking School.

This cooking video is taken from the lesson on
How to Select Pasta.

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Learn About Gourmet Salt

Many gourmet salts are on the market these days. Kosher salt, sea salt, fleure de sel or grey salt, whether mined from the earth or harvested from the sea, can enhance the flavor of any dish. While table salt can bring out and accent the flavor of food, it's worth it to try a few others as they all have different qualities.

Video Cooking School Classes

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How to Cook Pasta

Pasta is one of the most loved dishes around the world. In Italy, eating a plate of pasta is a daily ritual – a plate of properly-cooked pasta that is. Remarkably, however, most people inadvertently have been eating improperly cooked pasta for most of their lives.

In this lesson, you will learn the essentials in order to properly cook pasta. You will learn how to cook both dried and fresh pasta and how to test each type for doneness. You will also learn how to properly drain, sauce and serve pasta. Finally, you will learn how to match different sauces to the type of pasta you are cooking.

Even though cooking pasta is perceived to be very simple, you may be quite surprised to find out how many mistakes are commonly made. If pasta is a mainstay in your culinary repertoire, this lesson is sure to change the way you enjoy it.

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How to Select Pasta

While there is a big difference between fresh, laminated, pasta and dried, extruded, pasta, contrary to popular belief, one is not necessarily better than the other. Both are appreciated for their unique qualities and are used for different purposes.

Another big misconception is that all pasta is made in the same manner and is sold either fresh or dried; however, this is not the case. Although they may contain the same ingredients, the difference lies in HOW the dough is formed into pasta. How pasta is manufactured will dramatically affect your pasta experience.

In this lesson, you will learn how both extruded and laminated pasta are made, the differences between them and when you might choose one over the other. You will also learn that regardless of the brand, there are visual clues you can look for when choosing a package of dried pasta or things to be aware of when you are purchasing fresh. By understanding how pasta is made and knowing how to identify quality pasta, you are guaranteed to have the best pasta eating experiences.

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How to Make Fresh Pasta | Laminated Pasta

Laminated pasta contains flour, water and/or eggs which are mixed together, kneaded and then squeezed through rollers. In addition to more common shapes, like fettuccini or spaghetti, laminated fresh pasta is also made to produce things like cannelloni, ravioli, tortellini, or hand-cut pappardelle noodles.

Laminated pasta takes more time to make than simply buying pasta, but the end result is well worth the effort. Making your own pasta is not only an extremely satisfying experience, but it also allows you to control the flavor, thickness, shape, and filling. Imagine lasagne made with thick commercially made noodles, compared to layers of thinly-rolled, fresh pasta sheets. Eating tender, delicate pasta is a completely different experience than eating commercially dried pasta.

In this lesson, you will learn about the types of flour used to make pasta. You will learn how to make pasta dough by hand and by using a food processor. You will also learn how to knead the dough, roll it through a pasta machine and various ways to cut and shape it. Finally, you will learn how to vary the color of pasta dough, so you can add interesting flavor and color to your cooking.

Mastering the simple process of making your own pasta allows you to create many new and exciting dishes.

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How to Make Tomato Sauce

Tomato sauce is one of the most important mother sauces and is an indispensable staple in many kitchens around the world. In Italian cuisine, tomato sauce is everything and there is absolutely no option but to make it from scratch. Once you know the fundamental skills for making an authentic version, you will understand why. This sauce – when properly made – WILL greatly affect the way you cook. It not only opens your mind to respecting ingredients but also to proper cooking techniques.

In this lesson, you will learn how to make tomato sauce using just a few quality ingredients. Once you learn how to choose and prepare these ingredients, you will learn the very simple techniques necessary to build a sauce that has a rich and pure tomato flavor. A delicious and healthy tomato sauce is very easy to make and is extremely versatile. By having this tasty staple on hand, you will be able to build your favorite pizza, use it in dishes such as chicken parmigiana and as a base for a variety of pasta dishes. It can even be used to top your morning breakfast. We guarantee that the first time you make tomato sauce from scratch, you are sure to be converted.

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How to Make Béchamel Sauce

Béchamel is one of the five mother sauces. Appreciated for its subtle flavor and neutral color, a well-made béchamel is rich, creamy and silky-smooth. It is an essential component in many lasagnes, cream soups, gratins and in an authentic Mac n’ Cheese.

In this lesson, you will learn about béchamel sauce and the ingredients used to make it. You will learn two different methods for making béchamel and how to prevent lumps. You will learn how to infuse the sauce with various flavors and how to adjust the consistency to suit the dish you are making. Finally, you will learn how to finish, store and reheat this extremely versatile sauce.

By knowing how to whip up a simple béchamel , a variety of interesting sauces, soups and mouthwatering mains will be at your fingertips.

Note: Béchamel is properly spelled with the following accent: béchamel.

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How to Make Roux

Roux is one of the essential building blocks in cooking and is made by cooking fat and flour together.

Roux is used to thicken liquids to make wonderful soups, stews and sauces. It is also used to thicken stock when making velouté…and milk or cream when making béchamel.

Many home cooks have likely made a roux at one point or another but have not recognized that they have done so; nor do they understand roux’s full potential in the kitchen.

In this lesson, you will learn what roux is. You will learn how to make a white, blond and brown roux and the differences between them. Knowing how to make a roux and determining how far to cook it opens up a world of sauces and dishes. Once you learn how to properly make this important building block, you will be able to create a variety of sensational soups, stews, gravies and silky sauces.

Cooking Video Techniques

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Pasta Cooking Essentials

This instructional cooking video on Pasta Cooking Essentials, is part of the Rouxbe Cooking School.

This cooking video is taken from the lesson on
How to Cook Pasta.

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How to Mince & Crush Garlic

By mincing or crushing garlic into a paste, it releases more flavor and becomes quite powerful. This is a great knife skill to use in the kitchen when you want a strong garlic flavor.

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How to Buy & Prepare Garlic

Fresh garlic makes a difference, so don't just grab the first head of garlic you see at the supermarket. Here's what to look for when buying and prepping garlic for your favorite recipe.

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How to Pit Olives

The olive is the fruit from the olive tree. Until olives are brined, they are inedible. Whole olives are superior in flavor to olives that already have the pit removed. Here we show you how to pit olives yourself, so you can add the best flavor to any recipe.

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How to Make Balsamic Reduction

Balsamic reduction is an intensely flavored sauce made from simply reducing balsamic vinegar. Quite often, a fancy restaurant will garnish and decorate a plate with it. Because it is so powerful in flavor, a little goes a long way.

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How to Sauce Pasta

This instructional cooking video on How to Sauce Pasta, is part of the Rouxbe Cooking School.

This cooking video is taken from the lesson on
How to Cook Pasta.

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Draining Pasta

This instructional cooking video on Draining Pasta, is part of the Rouxbe Cooking School.

This cooking video is taken from the lesson on
How to Cook Pasta.

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How to Make Pesto in a Food Processor

Use a food processor to make fresh pesto in a matter of minutes. Basil, pine nuts, cheese, garlic and olive oil are combined to make this delicious pesto recipe.