Who doesn’t love pasta dishes? You can never go wrong with all kinds of pasta noodles. For one thing, any pasta dish is really simple to prepare. You don’t do any meal planning? Just cook pasta! The different kinds of pasta noodles are both easy to prepare and versatile. You don’t need to have gone to cooking school to make any type of pasta. Also, all the different kinds of pasta noodles are delicious with pasta sauces or in soups or salads. (That’s probably one of the reasons why there are pasta buffets – so we have choices.)
But despite how common pasta is in our (and our mothers’) pantries, there are actually many different kinds! There are definitely more than 10 different kinds of pasta noodles. We were definitely surprised to know that! Our latest class offering (more on that later) piqued our curiosity about the different pasta noodles available. So we did some research on different types of pasta and noodles found in local groceries and served at restaurants. And if you guessed noodles=different kinds, you guessed right! So the next thing we did was make this list.
Why make a list of all different types of noodles, you ask? Well, as this article said, picking the right pasta types can elevate good pasta recipes into great pasta dishes. Also, think of this as a future reference. After you read through this list, you won’t end up racking your brain when you see “fettuccine” or “linguine”. So without further ado – let’s go!
The different types of pasta noodles – with pictures!
Honestly, we actually had no idea how to arrange this list of types of pasta noodles. So we decided to do it the old-fashioned way: alphabetically! Hey, with so many different types of pasta noodles, we think it’s the best way to go about it.
So… what are the different kinds of pasta noodles? And what is each one best used for?
It’s also known as angel hair pasta or angel’s hair. It’s called that because the strands of pasta are very thin strands and very fine. With that in mind, you should also know that it cooks faster than the other types. Also, because each strand of pasta is thin, using chunky sauces with it is not recommended. It’s best used with cream or oil-based sauces.
If there was a list of short pastas, this one would top it. According to Craftsy.com, ditalini is an Italian word that means “little thimbles”. Thimbles are what you wear on your finger while sewing so you don’t get pricked. Ditalini looks like that, except that there are two holes. They are very short tubes of pasta. Ditalini is great with sauces and is also used in tomato soups. We think they’d be a good version of mac and cheese too!
This is probably common to all of us, as aside from spaghetti, this was our introduction to kinds of pasta. Don’t they remind you of elbows? Elbow macaroni is also described as half-circular, C-shaped, or bent, tube-shaped, short pasta. Speaking of tubes, think of the sauces you use flowing into the tubes. The result is one flavorful dish! One recipe you can make with these is the staple macaroni and cheese. They’re excellent for baked dishes, soups, and pasta salads.
Different Kinds of Pasta Noodles – F
Farfalle (bow tie pasta)
Yes, you’ve seen and read it right: bow-tie. And they do look like adorable bow ties, right? You can use them with creamy sauces, tomato sauces, and even olive oil. They are common in pasta salad recipes too! These guys are very versatile.
Jessica Gavin calls this pasta a flat spaghetti noodle. It’s slightly thicker and a more dense noodle than spaghetti, though. Because it’s wider, it goes well with thick meat sauces or chunks of meats, vegetables, or whatever is in the recipe. The most popular dish associated with this kind of pasta is the fettuccine alfredo.
This is a spiral-shaped pasta. Like the elbow macaroni holes, the shape of this pasta is amazing for catching sauces and dressings. That means when you use fusilli, whether with sauce or in salads, you’ll get the full flavor of the dish. Also, out of the different shapes of pasta noodles, the fusilli’s shape is so unique! It’s definitely an eye-catcher.
Different Kinds of Pasta Noodles – L
This is one of the oldest types of pasta in the world, according to Country Living. Lasagna is the term for the sheets of pasta that are easily identified by the ruffled edges. It’s also the name of the dish we’re sure we have all enjoyed as kids and the favorite of Garfield! Sandwiched between the sheets are tomato sauce, your meat/vegetable choice, and cheese. It’s delicious! You can also use lasagna in soups or roll-ups.
RealSimple.com says that linguine is an Italian word meaning “little tongues”. Linguine is like fettuccine – they also look like flattened spaghetti, but not as wide. These noodles are commonly used with clam sauce and pesto.
Different Kinds of Pasta Noodles – P
Pappardelle is flat like the fettuccine and linguine. This type of pasta noodles, however, is the widest among the three. Think of it as a workhorse pasta – it’s very sturdy! Feel free to throw hearty sauces at it; it will rise up to the challenge. Use this and you won’t be afraid of the sauce – whether meat or vegetable sauces – overpowering your pasta.
Penne is another kind of tube-shaped pastas. It’s hollow, cylindrical, and has slanted edges. The ridges on its body are for catching sauces. This pasta type is appropriate for all kinds of chunky sauces – the bits will slide into the holes and ridges.
Different Kinds of Pasta Noodles – R
Ravioli is a square and stuffed pasta – made with egg-based pasta dough. You can say that they’re egg noodles, in a way. Just like lasagna, this noodle has a ruffled edge. You can also stuff them with whatever you feel like! Fill them in with cheese, meat, seafood, or vegetables. Serve it topped with sauce, in a soup, or with olive oil drizzle.
Rigatoni looks like penne, but it’s not the same. It’s also hollow and cylindrical and has ridges, but it does not have slanted edges. It’s also slightly fatter and larger. Use the same sauces you use with penne. You can also use them in salads and baked casseroles.
Rotini is a spiral-shaped pasta, like the fusilli. However, the spiral is slightly different – think more corkscrew in shape. It also has a tighter shape. But like the fusilli, use rotini with sauces that will go into the pasta shapes. Aside from pasta sauce recipes, you can also use these noodles in baked dishes.
Different Kinds of Pasta Noodles – S
Shells are called shells because… this pasta type looks like shells. Go figure. There are actually different kinds and different sizes. Some have bigger openings, and some have smaller ones. You can serve them as stuffed shells in a casserole or just cook normally and then drizzle with sauce. Both are delicious options.
What is the most popular pasta, or what is the most popular type of pasta? We would definitely answer with spaghetti if asked. We’re pretty sure everyone we know has eaten this noodle. It’s already a staple in most of our fast-food restaurants. It’s also always present during children’s parties! Spaghetti and meatballs (use a chicken meatball if you prefer) is also a personal favorite of ours. To distinguish it from angel hair pasta, let’s just say spaghetti is thicker.
The tube shape of the ziti makes it look just like rigatoni. It’s also hollow and has straight edges. However, ziti also has a very smooth exterior and is smaller than rigatoni. You have to use sauces or toppings that are thick so they don’t slide off the smoothness of the ziti. Get your tomato sauce and cheese, and make baked ziti. You can also serve ziti with olive oil or fresh tomato.
Different type of noodles means different ways of cooking them
You’ve seen the different kinds of noodles for pasta. You’ve also seen how the shape, size, and texture of each noodle can affect the dish. They will all taste wonderful, but be careful about the sauce you use with each kind of pasta. Remember to use lighter oils or cream sauces when you’re working with thin noodles so that the noodles are not overwhelmed. The thicker noodles are more durable so you can use heartier, richer sauces. Chunkier sauces or sauces with meat or vegetable bits are also perfect for noodles with textures. Experiment with different noodles, sauces, oils, salad recipes, and see which ones work together and which don’t.
What are the different types of pasta that should be tried?
Like we mentioned above, the list doesn’t include all types of pasta noodles. These are just the ones that we have encountered. So there are many more kinds of pasta noodles that should be listed and tried. In fact, if you get the chance, try out all the kinds you encounter!
And here’s one that you should definitely try: our latest class offering, Chef Miguel and Angel Prats’ Braised Beef with Pappardelle Pasta! Check out the video below to know more.
Learn their special recipe, as well as some kitchen tips. Make tender, slow-braised chunks of beef marinated in a delectable red wine sauce. After that, place the chunks on a bed of pappardelle pasta, mix it all together and take a bite. It’s going to be so delicious, you’ll forget you even asked questions like “what are the different types of noodles?” It’s a pasta dish unlike any other, guaranteed! It’s going to be great for your online cooking business. Customers will be lining up for more!
And if you enroll now, you’ll get the intro price of only Php799! It’s up to July 6, 2021 (11:59pm PH TIME) only… so what are you waiting for? There might not be another opportunity for this. Click here to enroll in our Braised Beef with Pappardelle Pasta class now!