Pasta has been consumed in Italy for thousands of years, but it wasn’t until the last two hundred or so that it really became a global sensation. These days, Italian cuisine is vying for supremacy with Chinese, Indian, and French.
In any case, pasta is enjoyed both in professional restaurants and at home in many forms. Spaghetti, penne, macaroni, lasagna, fettuccine, ribbons, spirals, bowties, and many more are available for purchase.
Different brands have also made their names on the pasta stage, with many being global empires while others prefer more local domains. It’s understandable that there might be those who get confused as to which ones to choose.
This is why the five pasta options features here are worth looking into. Not only can they give you exactly what you are looking for with your commercial pasta, but they can also surprise you with their special characteristics.
Best Pastas Comparison & Rating
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Before you decide which pasta to buy, you might want to find out more about the best options available. This is to make sure that you will absolutely enjoy the pasta that you would get for your kitchen. Also, be sure to click the yellow buttons below to see their best deals on Amazon! With that, here are five of the best options that we rounded up especially for you.
De Cecco Pasta, Elbows
11 x 7.6 x 5 inches
This is one of the best brands of pasta that is available in the market. You are going to absolutely love this elbow option for the texture, taste, and sauce retention. You can make baked macaroni with this as well as regular mac n’ cheese. This pasta would be great for salad, as well. It cooks quickly and there are no issues with sticking to each other either.
Barilla Whole Grain Pasta
11.2 x 9.6 x 7.4 inches
This is a delicious, satisfying, and healthy pasta option that you are going to absolutely love. It comes in the right size, shape, and texture to make any pasta dish worth the work. The sauce will cling to this penne pasta like nothing else. This ensures that you will get the maximum flavor that you worked on. It’s a lot healthier than the variety that is not whole grain, too.
Al Dente Carba-Nada Pasta
1 x 1 x 1 inches
Enriched Semolina Flour
This is a fairly decent choice as far as fettuccine pasta options go. It comes in individual packets so that you can keep the rest fresh. They are quick to cook too and taste amazing when al dente. You can use this for every kind of pasta sauce in existence. You could even pair this pasta with curry sauce or pad thai sauce.
BARILLA Blue Box Pasta
10.98 x 5.79 x 5.39 inches
Semolina (Wheat), Durum Wheat Flour
This is actually a pretty good pasta option for those looking for excellent spaghetti. You are going to love the texture and chewiness when cooked to perfection. It can be paired with pretty much any sauce you can think of. You could also prepare dishes for vegetarians, vegans, meat lovers, and so on. The pasta itself will hold up well and won’t get mushy if cooked just right.
Banza Chickpea Pasta
10 x 6 x 8 inches
Penne, Rotini, and Shells
Chickpeas, Tapioca, and Pea Protein
This is quite a decent substitute for wheat pasta. It does not come with the same amount of carbs, so you can eat it without worrying too much about your weight. The taste is not all that far off from regular pasta, either. You can count on this product to go well with most pasta sauces and recipes from your cookbooks. This is one of the best pasta alternatives you are going to find.
Pasta Buyer's Guide
There are many types of pasta to choose from, ranging from your typical spaghetti to your less known gnocchi. Your choices will determine what kind of pasta dish you can make with them. For example, there are certain pasta types that can be used for soup, baked dishes, and even desserts. Others, however, are only good for plating.
Traditionally, pasta is made from semolina flour but it can be flavored with different herbs, spices, nuts, and the like. Aside from that, many developments in the food industry have allowed other base ingredients like peas and beans to replace wheat itself. So you have to take a look at the ingredient details to make sure that you are getting exactly what you want.
When it comes to commercial pasta, quality can refer to the ingredients, the packaging, the texture, the appearance, and the smell. Even if different pasta brands use the same ingredients, how they treat their pasta will still different. Color, thickness, density, and smoothness will all play a part in determining just how good the results will be.
Not all pasta cooks the same way and even with the same types, the results can still differ. One example is cooking time, with some elbow macaroni taking longer to cook than others. The differences can become even more pronounced when it is different types since salad macaroni will cook quite a bit faster than spaghetti or lasagna. Keep this in mind when making your choice.
There is this common misconception that regular, unflavored pasta will not taste of anything when they are cooked. This is not necessarily the case. They are supposed to taste starchy and bland. In some cases, the pasta can taste sour, salty, or sweet depending on how it was made. Take this into consideration since this could then affect the flavor of the finished dish.
Semolina flour is made from durum wheat, which is typically coarse and has been used to make pasta in Italy for centuries. The biggest reason why it is used in making pasta is the concentrated presence of gluten in the flour. This ensures that your pasta will keep its shape when you cook it and will have that pleasant, soft but chewy texture when you bite into it.
In terms of taste, texture, and digestion, fresh pasta is always the better option when given the choice. However, in terms of shelf-life, versatility, and convenience, commercial pasta has the upper hand. Fresh pasta will only last for a few days before losing its special qualities. Commercial pasta, on the other hand, could last for months or years.
Noodles and pasta actually share a lot of similarities, but they differ in terms of specialized ingredients, use, and of course, origin. In the case of pasta, semolina flour is the preferred ingredient while in noodles, it can include wheat, buckwheat, rice, and certain root crops. Pasta is also typically consumed with sauces while noodles are either stir-fried and paired with broths.
There are many types of pasta that are made of different ingredients. These include potatoes, beans, peas, seeds, and even vegetables. They are not technically pasta, but they are called as such for the sake of convenience. As to whether or not they are worth getting, if you are health conscious or allergic to gluten, they might be worth getting.