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Ravioli vs. Pierogi: What's the Difference?

By Aimie Carlson & Harlon Moss || Updated on May 22, 2024
Ravioli are Italian stuffed pasta often filled with cheese or meat, while pierogi are Polish dumplings filled with potatoes, cheese, or meats, typically boiled and sometimes fried.

Key Differences

Ravioli are a staple of Italian cuisine, consisting of pasta squares filled with a variety of ingredients such as cheese, meat, or vegetables. They are usually served with a tomato or cream-based sauce, enhancing their rich flavors. Pierogi, on the other hand, originate from Poland and are dumplings filled with ingredients like potatoes, cheese, or meats. They are typically boiled and then sometimes pan-fried, offering a different texture and taste experience compared to ravioli.
Ravioli dough is made from flour and eggs, creating a tender pasta shell that holds the fillings well. This dough is rolled thin and cut into squares or circles before being stuffed and sealed. Pierogi dough, in contrast, is usually made from flour, eggs, and sour cream or water, giving it a slightly different texture. The dough is rolled out, cut into circles, filled, and then folded into half-moons before being sealed.
In terms of preparation, ravioli are primarily cooked by boiling until they float, then they are often served with a sauce immediately. Pierogi, while also boiled initially, are frequently pan-fried in butter to add a crispy outer layer after boiling, providing a contrast in textures that ravioli typically do not have.
Ravioli fillings often feature Italian cheeses like ricotta, meats, or vegetables, reflecting the diverse and rich culinary tradition of Italy. Pierogi fillings are more centered around Eastern European staples such as potatoes, cottage cheese, and sauerkraut, showcasing the region’s culinary heritage.
Ravioli are typically served as a main course or a hearty appetizer in Italian meals. Pierogi, on the other hand, can be served as a main dish, side dish, or even a dessert when filled with sweet ingredients like fruits or sweet cheese.

Comparison Chart



Dough Ingredients

Flour, eggs
Flour, eggs, sour cream or water

Cooking Method

Boiled and served with sauce
Boiled, then sometimes pan-fried

Common Fillings

Cheese, meat, vegetables
Potatoes, cheese, meat, sauerkraut

Serving Style

Usually with a sauce as a main dish or appetizer
As a main dish, side dish, or dessert

Ravioli and Pierogi Definitions


Italian stuffed pasta squares.
I ordered spinach and ricotta ravioli for dinner.


Can be boiled and then fried.
The pierogi were crispy after being pan-fried.


Pasta filled with cheese, meat, or vegetables.
The ravioli were stuffed with a rich blend of cheeses.


Polish dumplings filled with various ingredients.
She made pierogi with potato and cheese filling.


Often considered a main course.
He made ravioli as the main dish for the party.


Filled with potatoes, cheese, or meats.
We enjoyed pierogi stuffed with a savory meat filling.


Traditionally served with a sauce.
The ravioli was covered in a delicious tomato sauce.


Served as a main dish, side, or dessert.
Pierogi can be enjoyed as a dessert when filled with fruit.


A small casing of pasta with any of various fillings, such as chopped meat or cheese.


A staple of Eastern European cuisine.
Pierogi are a beloved dish in Polish cuisine.


A dish made with ravioli.


A semicircular dumpling with any of various fillings, such as finely chopped meat or vegetables, that is often sautéed after being boiled.


Plural of raviolo


(North America) A square- or crescent-shaped dumpling of unleavened dough, stuffed with sauerkraut, cheese, mashed potatoes, cabbage, onion, meat, or any combination of these, or with a fruit filling.


Small square parcels of pasta filled with meat, cheese, spinach etc.


A dish made with ravioli.


(informal) by analogy, similar dishes/pastas from non-Italian cuisines.


Small circular or square cases of dough with savory fillings


An integral part of Italian cuisine.
Ravioli is one of the classic Italian pasta dishes.


What are ravioli?

Ravioli are Italian pasta filled with ingredients like cheese, meat, or vegetables.

What fillings are common in ravioli?

Common ravioli fillings include ricotta cheese, spinach, and ground meats.

How are ravioli typically cooked?

Ravioli are usually boiled and served with a sauce.

How are pierogi typically cooked?

Pierogi are boiled and sometimes pan-fried for added texture.

What sauces are common with ravioli?

Common sauces for ravioli include tomato sauce and cream-based sauces.

Can ravioli be a main course?

Yes, ravioli are often served as a main course.

What are pierogi?

Pierogi are Polish dumplings filled with ingredients such as potatoes, cheese, or meats.

What fillings are common in pierogi?

Common pierogi fillings include potatoes, cottage cheese, and sauerkraut.

Can pierogi be a dessert?

Yes, pierogi can be filled with sweet ingredients and served as a dessert.

What toppings are common with pierogi?

Common toppings for pierogi include sautéed onions and butter.

Are ravioli always savory?

Generally, yes, ravioli are savory, but there are sweet variations too.

Are ravioli and pierogi served with sauces?

Ravioli are typically served with sauces, while pierogi can be served with sour cream or onions.

What is the main difference in the dough of ravioli and pierogi?

Ravioli dough is made with flour and eggs, while pierogi dough often includes sour cream or water.

What cuisine does ravioli belong to?

Ravioli are a part of Italian cuisine.

What cuisine does pierogi belong to?

Pierogi are a part of Polish and Eastern European cuisine.

Are pierogi always savory?

No, pierogi can be both savory and sweet.

Are ravioli and pierogi similar in shape?

Ravioli are usually square or circular, while pierogi are typically half-moon shaped.

Do ravioli and pierogi have different textures?

Yes, ravioli have a tender pasta texture, while pierogi can have a crispy outer layer if pan-fried.

Can ravioli be made at home?

Yes, ravioli can be made at home with fresh dough and fillings.

Can pierogi be made at home?

Yes, pierogi can be made at home and are often a family tradition in Polish households.
About Author
Written by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.
Co-written by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.

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