Here’s exactly how to acquire your mouth roughly a pantry’s-worth the Italian pasta names, and also a few suggestions on exactly how to offer it all.

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If you’re stuck in a pasta regimen of key after bowl of plain old spaghetti, you’re missing out. Back the flavor of pasta doesn’t vary all that much, even if it is it’s a quick cut or long, the method that the shapes interact with the sauce has actually a big impact on the finished dish. And as a bonus, each has an Italian surname that’s fun to pronounce, and also sometimes a little funny once translated.

There room literally hundreds of various cuts out there, but it’s usual to find the same dozen or so show up again and also again. If you’re spring to gain even more variety, think about seeking the end pasta made by an artisanal producer, who use heirloom grains, regional flavors, seasonal specialties, and more exotic shapes.

Click the voice spellings listed below to hear Giada pronounce pasta names, then check out on for the basics ~ above some famous and much more unusual shapes, along with a description of the sauces they pair best with.

Bucatini (boo-kah-TEEN-ee; “little holes”) Hailing from Rome and also the bordering Lazio, this strands are choose thick spaghetti through a tiny hole running from end to end. A functional pasta, they’re regularly served just with a red sauce, or through butter or olive oil and a little of grated Parmesan.

Capellini (ka-pull-EE-nee; “little hairs”) likewise known as angel-hair pasta, this long, thin noodles cook quickly and go finest with irradiate sauces that won’t weigh them down. Think olive oil, garlic, and lemon, or a straightforward tomato-basil sauce.

Casarecce (ka-sa-RAY-cheh; “homemade”) Narrow, rolled, and twisted tubes, this pasta is as rustic as its homey name suggests. Try it with chunky sauces or in casseroles.

Conchiglie (kohn-KEEL-yeh; “shells”) this come in assorted sizes, indigenous very big ones expected for stuffing, come very little ones, i m sorry are called conchigliette. Shells are great with meat sauces, and the little ones job-related in any type of dish wherein you’d usage elbow macaroni.


Giada’s Turkey and Mushroom Stuffed Conchiglie “Shells”

Croxetti (kro-KET-tee; “little crosses”) like coins of pasta, this disks room stamped with different patterns. They date earlier to the middle Ages, when wealthy families had them adorned v their coats of arms—the ultimate edible standing symbol. Serve through a simple, irradiate sauce, or simply a bit of olive oil.

Farfalle (far-FALL-eh; “butterflies”) Often called bow tie pasta, these pretty butterfly shapes taste ideal with an easy olive oil‚Äì or tomato-based sauce that may incorporate ingredients such together peppers, chicken, or arugula. They are also great for a pasta salad because the shape is fun and also bite-size.


Pasta Primavera v Farfalle Pasta

Fettuccine (fet-too-CHEEN-eh; “little ribbons”) comparable to linguine but thicker and also wider, this noodles are suitable for countless sauces, including those that are cream-based or made through meat.

Fregola Sarda (FREG-o-lah SAR-dahgola; “little Sardinian fragments”) As the name suggests, these bead-like bits the pasta hail indigenous Sardinia. Comparable to Israeli couscous, they space thought come have come to the island with immigrants native the Genovese nest in Tunisia. A traditional fregola preparation has tomato sauce and also clams.

Fusilli bucati (foo-ZEE-lee boo-CAH-tee; indigenous the Italian because that “spun” and also “hole”) comparable to fusilli, which look like corkscrews, this noodles look much more like bedsprings. They space a great choice for thick-and-hearty sauces due to the fact that all the “goodness” gets trapped within the spiral fairly than simply coating the exterior.

Gigli (GEE-lee; “lillies”) the same, similar thing a flower, v a bell-like shape and ruffled edges, this shape stands up best to thick sauces and the chunky ingredient of a casserole.

Girelle (gee-REL-eh; “swivels”) This shape takes its surname for that is corkscrew-like turns. Shot it with ingredients that have the right to cling come its an extensive curves, such as a pesto and vegetables.

Gramigna (gra-MEEN-ya; “weed”) Small, grass-like curls the pasta, these noodles cling to many ingredients. They loan themselves to light sauces through a few small chunks the meat or sausage.

Linguine (lin-GWEE-neh; “little tongues”) these long, level strands space slightly bent in their cross section, prefer the tongues castle are called after. Castle stand approximately sturdier sauces, such together a pesto, tomato, or mushroom sauce, or those with flavorful ingredients, such together shellfish.


Linguine with sun Dried Tomatoes, Olives and Lemon

Macraoni (mak-a-ROW-neh) Most typically used in the United states in macaroni and cheese or pasta salads, these bent tubes make suitable ingredient for soups and also stews, such together pasta e fagioli.

Mafalda (ma-FAL-da; called after Princess Mafalda of Savoy) these flat, wide, ribbon-like noodles have actually wavy ridges that make them look a tiny like small strips that lasagna. Castle go finest with light, delicate sauces that cling to your smooth sides.

Orecchiette (or-ay-KYET-tay; “little ears”) Resembling their namesake ears, these round, curved pieces hail southerly Italy, and they are regularly served through broccoli rabe and sausage.


Giada’s Orecchiette with Cauliflower and also Bread Crumbs

Paccheri (pa-KER-ee; “open-handed slap”) These short, vast tubes where said to have actually been invented during the Renaissance for usage in smuggling garlic throughout the Alps right into what is currently Austria. This selection is suitable to thick sauces, which cause them to make a slapping sound when eaten.

Penne (PEN-eh; “quills”) These little tubes might be smooth or ridged (rigate). Penne is best used in soups, pasta salads, and also with thicker sauces and also casseroles due to the fact that the ingredients and also sauces deserve to penetrate the inside of the pasta. Penne rigate is ideal for meat, vegetable, or butter-and-oil-based sauces since the ridges host the sauce.

Riccioli (REE-key-oh-leeiccioli; “little curls”) Short, wide, and also with a twist, these piece stand approximately chunkier ingredients choose meat and also cheese.

Rigatoni (ree-gah-TOE-nee; “ridged”) This wide, ridged, tube-shaped pasta has holes on either finish that are big enough to capture pieces of vegetable in a sauce. In addition, this type of pasta is perfect for baked dishes made with sauce and also cheese.


Rigatoni through Pork Ragout

Strozzapreti (strote-za-PRAY-tee; “priest chokers”) There room a few legends around how this short, rolling pasta obtained its colorful name. One claims that roman inn housewives that made it would “choke” the dough v such force, it looked together if they might choke a priest. Offer it as you would certainly penne, with meat, vegetables, or just butter and also oil.

Tagliatelle (tall-yuh-TELL-eh; indigenous the Italian tagliere, “to cut”) A ribbon that’s generally narrower than fettuccine, this versatile pasta lends chin to miscellaneous sauces, yet is traditionally offered with Bolognese or other meaty sauces.

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Trofie (TROH-fee) This short, tapered, twisted pasta from Genoa bag well with pesto and also other basic sauces.