Five Cheese Marinara: The Ultimate Recipe for Cheese Lovers

Welcome to Five Cheese Marinara Recipe for Cheese Lovers. Get ready to tantalize your taste buds and elevate your culinary game!

Exploring the Five Cheeses

The essence of our Five Cheese Marinara is the unique blend of cheeses, each chosen for its distinct taste and texture. Let’s delve into the flavors of these cheeses and see how they unite to form a sauce that’s especially rich and satisfying. Moreover, if cheesy dishes are your thing, you’ll probably enjoy the Gordita Crunch, a fast-food classic we’ve explored in depth.


Renowned for its excellent melting qualities, mozzarella adds a creamy and stretchy texture to the sauce. Its mild, slightly tangy flavor provides a perfect base that allows the other cheeses to shine.


Aged Parmesan brings a nutty and slightly salty flavor to the mix. Its granular texture and rich taste add depth and complexity, enhancing the overall flavor profile of the sauce.


This soft, creamy cheese contributes a rich, velvety texture to the marinara. Ricotta, with its softness and creaminess, gives the marinara a luxurious texture. Its gentle sweetness softens the bolder flavors, making the sauce deliciously smooth


Known for its sharp, salty flavor, Romano cheese adds a punch that contrasts beautifully with milder cheeses.


Provolone offers a smooth, slightly smoky flavor. As it melts, it blends the distinct flavors, introducing a subtle depth that takes the sauce to a higher level of taste.

The blend of these five cheeses results in a sauce that is rich, creamy, and bursting with flavor.

Step-by-Step Cooking Guide

Now that we’ve explored the flavorful world of the five cheeses, it’s time to roll up our sleeves and start cooking. Follow this step-by-step guide to create your own mouth-watering Five Cheese Marinara sauce.


  • 2 cans of whole peeled tomatoes (28 oz each)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (optional, for balancing acidity)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup grated Mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup Ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
  • 1/2 cup sliced Provolone cheese
  • Fresh basil leaves for garnish (optional)


  1. Prepare the Tomatoes: Begin by crushing the whole peeled tomatoes with your hands or a potato masher in a large bowl. This will give your sauce a rustic and hearty texture.
  2. Sauté the Garlic: In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and sauté for about 1 minute, or until fragrant. Be careful not to burn the garlic.
  3. Simmer the Sauce: Add the crushed tomatoes to the saucepan, along with sugar, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Bring the sauce to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low. Allow the sauce to simmer gently for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the Cheeses: Once the sauce has simmered and thickened slightly, it’s time to add the cheeses. First, stir in the grated Mozzarella and Parmesan. Once they begin to melt, add the Ricotta, Romano, and Provolone. Keep stirring until you’ve melted all the cheeses and blended them thoroughly into the sauce.
  5. Final Touches: Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning with additional salt and pepper if needed. If desired, add a handful of fresh basil leaves for an extra burst of flavor.
  6. Serve and Enjoy: Serve your Five Cheese Marinara over your favorite pasta, garnished with extra grated cheese or fresh herbs.

Perfect Pasta Pairings

The right pasta can elevate your dish to new culinary heights. Here are some ideal pasta pairings for your Five Cheese Marinara:

  • Rigatoni: The ridges and hollows of rigatoni are great for holding onto the cheesy sauce. Their tubular shape allows the sauce to seep inside, delivering a burst of flavor with each mouthful.
  • Penne: Similar to rigatoni, penne’s tube-like shape and ridges make it another fitting choice. Its smaller size and angled ends add a different texture and presentation to the dish.
  • Spaghetti: A classic pairing, spaghetti noodles intertwine beautifully with the Five Cheese Marinara, offering a traditional Italian dining experience. They are especially great if you prefer more sauce with each forkful.
  • Conchiglie (Shell Pasta): The shell shape of conchiglie is perfect for scooping up generous amounts of sauce. This pasta is particularly enjoyable for those who love a sauce-heavy dish.

Tips for Pasta Preparation:

  • Salt the Water: Always salt your pasta water generously. It should taste like the sea. This is your only chance to season the pasta itself.
  • Al Dente: Cook the pasta until it’s al dente (firm to the bite). Cook the pasta until it’s fully done yet still firm enough to maintain its shape.
  • Reserve Pasta Water: Before draining the pasta, reserve a cup of the pasta water. You can use this starchy water to adjust the consistency of your sauce if needed.

Nutritional Insights

  • Caloric Content: The Five Cheese Marinara is undoubtedly rich, with cheeses contributing to the calorie count. Each serving size (about 1/2 cup of sauce) can have approximately 150-200 calories, depending on the types and amounts of cheese used.
  • Protein and Calcium: Thanks to the variety of cheeses, this sauce is a good source of protein and calcium. These nutrients are essential for bone health and muscle function.
  • Carbohydrates: The primary source of carbs in this dish comes from the tomatoes and the pasta you choose to pair with the sauce. Opting for whole-grain pasta can be a healthier choice, providing more fiber and nutrients.
  • Fat Content: Cheese is a significant source of fat, particularly saturated fat. While this contributes to the rich flavor, it’s something to be mindful of, especially for those watching their fat intake.
  • Dietary Considerations: For those with dietary restrictions, there are ways to modify the recipe. Use low-fat cheese options to reduce calorie and fat content. For a gluten-free version, serve the sauce with gluten-free pasta.
  • Vitamins and Minerals: Tomatoes are rich in vitamins C and K, potassium, and folate. Tomatoes provide antioxidants such as lycopene, which offer various health benefits.

FAQs Section 

What is the difference between marinara and tomato sauce?

Marinara is a simple tomato sauce, often made quickly with just tomatoes, garlic, and herbs. Other tomato sauces might be more complex, with added ingredients like meats and various vegetables. For a comprehensive understanding of these beloved sauces, their historical origins, nutritional content, and expert cooking tips, read our full article: Marinara vs Tomato Sauce: Key Differences.

What is the best cheese to add to red sauce?

Curiously, the best cheese to add to red sauce depends on your personal preference. Specifically, for a Five Cheese Marinara, a combination of mozzarella, parmesan, ricotta, romano, and provolone offers a balanced blend of flavors and textures. Each cheese brings its unique taste, from creamy and mild to sharp and tangy. Therefore, this mix ensures that every bite is a harmonious symphony of cheesy delight.

Why is marinara sauce called marinara?

Marinara sauce gets its name from “marinaro,” an Italian word for sailor. Originally, the sailors’ wives made this sauce for their husbands returning from sea. Its simple ingredients and quick preparation time made it an ideal choice for them.

Can I put cheese in my spaghetti sauce?

Absolutely! Adding cheese to spaghetti sauce can enrich its flavor and texture. Cheeses like parmesan, mozzarella, or a blend like in Five Cheese Marinara, melt into the sauce, creating a rich, creamy, and flavorful dish.

After mastering the Five Cheese Marinara, why not try your hand at baking with our guide to delicious and easy-to-make waffle cookies, perfect for any sweet tooth?

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