Defining Unique Italian Flavors

The best way to serve some classic Italian pasta is by pairing it with the perfect sauce, for a combination of flavors that leaves you wanting more. A good sauce can make an ordinary dish into an extraordinary one, but there are so many different types of sauces out there, that it can be difficult to find the perfect one to match up with the kind of flavors that you’re craving in the moment.

At Ferraro’s Italian Restaurant in Las Vegas, we know Italian food, and we know that Italian pasta sauces are numerous. To help you learn what’s what in the world of sauces, we’ve put together this quick guide on the most common types of pasta sauces used in Italian cooking and what makes each one unique.


A well known sauce that typically serves as the perfect pairing for fettuccine pasta. This sauce is a rich and creamy, thanks to the heavy cream and butter that’s used to make it. Adding in some freshly grated Parmesan cheese adds a slight salty yet sharp flavor, and a touch of black pepper for a slight kick.


Sometimes referred to as “Ragu”, Bolognese is a rich meat sauce. Chicken livers make up the base meat flavor, and combined with wine, vegetables, and nutmeg, this sauce makes for a complex flavor and intoxicating aroma. It is a versatile sauce that can be used with a variety of different pasta types. To further enhance the flavor, it is commonly served with butter and grated cheese. For an even richer texture to the sauce, cream can be added as well.


Carbonara sauce is another rich sauce that has a mainly dairy base consisting of eggs, cream, and Parmesan cheese. Adding in a small amount of bacon gives the sauce a delicious savory and smoky flavor. Some carbonara sauces have some green peas added to the mix for a little bit of extra flavor. A perfect addition to any pasta.


Perfectly simple, Marinara is a classic Italian tomato sauce that is seasoned with onion, garlic, and oregano for a fragrant and delicious sauce. With simplicity also lies versatility, with Marinara sauce being commonly used on all types of dishes beyond just pasta, including everyone’s favorite: pizza.


Compared to the other Italian sauces, Marsala sauce is unique in that it uses a sweet Spanish wine as it’s base. Once the wine is reduced to a syrupy consistency, it’s mixed with other ingredients such as heavy cream and parmesan cheese to give the sauce a richness in both texture and flavor. To add more flavor, it’s common for onions, mushrooms, and other herbs to be blended into the sauce for more complexity. This sauce it typically used to top meat dishes, but works perfectly with pasta as well, especially if you mix some meat into the pasta such as chicken.

Explore Italian Flavor With Ferraro’s

If you want to experience true Italian cuisine and see the differences in these various pasta sauces for yourself, there’s no better place in Las Vegas than Ferraro’s Italian Restaurant. A family-owned business that brings the classic flavors of Italian home cooking to your table, paired with a world-class wine selection, you won’t find a better Italian dining experience. Book your reservation with us today!