Types of pasta. Types and forms of pasta

Pasta (pasta or pasta) – product of yellow colour from dried or fresh dough. Dough for classic pasta is made of wheat flour and water.

In Italy, a dried product made of flour and water is called “dough” (Pasta). The Russian name “pasta” comes from the Greek “macaroni”, which means “food made of barley flour”. Over time, the name took hold of the whole pasta group.

There are three states in which pasta can be found:

Dry .

Classic dry pasta that you can buy in the store. Stored from six months to three years.

Fresh .

Pasta in the form of non-dried dough. Stored for one or two days. It’s mostly cooked right after cooking.

Full .

Ready pasta that is filled with stuffing, sauce, spices. Eaten immediately. Doesn’t last long.

Pasta is widely spread around the world and has become a culinary base for many recipes. Pasta dishes are popular in Italian, European, Asian and vegetarian cuisine.

Macaroni (pasta) types and kinds vary:





Types of flour;

Ingredients in the composition;

Preparation time until ready;

Ability to absorb and retain sauce on the surface;

Types of pasta. Types and forms of pasta

Different shapes and types of pasta

All these parameters divide the pasta into hundreds of species. The different shapes of pasta have been invented to trap and distribute different sauce, gravy, juice of meat, fish or vegetables on their surface. Many of the pasta varieties were made specifically to be served on a particular sauce or dish.

What is the difference between pasta made of soft flour and pasta made of hard flour?

How do you buy quality pasta without overpaying for Italian roots? The answers to these and other questions I collected in this article…

“How do you choose the right pasta?”

The cooking times given in the descriptions are approximate. Before boiling the pasta, check the data on the packaging.

The pasta in the recipes can easily be replaced with a similar type from the same group.

You can determine the size of the pasta by name, specifically by its Italian end:

-oni – large

-something or -etti – small

-ini – small

If we divide the pasta types by shape, we get 6 categories:

Long pasta

Short pasta

Figured macaroni

Pasta for baking

Small pasta for soups

Macaroni for stuffing

Long pasta

Type of pasta (pasta)


Definition, shape and size

Capellini is one of the thinnest kinds of pasta.

Approximate thickness of 0.9 to 1.1 mm.

Capellini pasta. Photo. Capellini pasta. Foto .

Size of pasta (pasta) capellini

Description and History

The Capellini were invented in northern central Italy. In Italian “sarellino” means a hair or fine hair.


Although the pasta threads look very brittle, the capellini does not break when added to the boiling water and keeps its shape well.

The pasta is a nest-shaped capellini. Photo by

What is it combined with and how is it served?

Capellini is perfect for light sauces or soups.

Ready Capellini pasta. Picture on a plate.

Boiled capellini with vegetables and pepper. Source pccmarkets.com

How much to boil

until you’re ready: Three minutes.

“al dente”: two minutes.

Recipes with Capellini pasta.

hasn’t cooked yet.

Back to the pasta list.


Long macaroni. Vermicelli (rus. Vermicelli).

Form .

Long and rather thin paste with a round cross-section (1.4 mm to 2 mm in diameter).


The first mention of vermicelli dates back to early 1338.

In Russian, the word “Vermicelli” means “worms”.

Features .

The appearance resembles classic spaghetti, but the noodles are smaller in length and width.

Long macaroni. Vermicelli. Rus. Vermicelli.

Combined and served.

Traditionally served with light tomato sauces or fish or seafood based sauces.

Cooking time

It’s 12 minutes until we’re ready. Cooking time “al dente” – 9 minutes.

Recipes for dishes with Vermicelli.

Cheese soup with chicken and noodles.

Cheese soup with chicken and noodles. Step-by-step recipe with photo

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Long macaroni. Spaghetti.

Shape: Long and thin paste with a round cross-section (from 1.8 mm to 2 mm in diameter).

Description: One of the first official references in the history of spaghetti was the name “spaghetto”, recorded in 1819.

On April 1, 1957, the British television channel BBC presented to the public the documentary film “Spring Spaghetti Harvest”. Everything would be fine, if it were not for one “but”, this story tells how, thanks to many years of work of agronomists in the pasta tree managed to grow pasta of equal length and thickness. Not everyone appreciated the humor and the day after the broadcast, the BBC studio received a huge number of calls from those who wanted to buy pasta trees.

Long macaroni. Spaghetti.

Features: Originally spaghetti was about 50 cm long. Nowadays, for comfortable cooking, the length has been reduced to about 24-27 cm, but you can find old-sized spaghetti on the shelves of stores or order it online, for example, spaghetti for lovers.

Long pasta. Spaghetti…

Mixed and served: Perfect for both rich and thick tomato or fish-based sauces, as well as tender and light cream-based cream sauces, soft and hard cheeses and seafood.

Preparation time: 12 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 10 min.


Shape: Long and thin paste with round cross-section (1.63 to 1.70 mm). Thinner compared to spaghetti.

Description: Dry long pasta comes from Southern Italy, more specifically from the city of Naples.

Features: Universal type of pasta.

Long pasta. Spaghettini.

Combined and served:

Ideal in combination with a variety of seafood, with the addition of olives, which together form an interesting and appetizing harmony of taste of Mediterranean cuisine.

Cooking time: 9 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 7 min.

Recipes of Spaghettini dishes:

Spaghettini with white mushrooms, champignons and cheese.

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Long macaroni. Spaghettoni.


Shape: Long and thin paste with a round cross-section.

Description: Spaghettoni is a long dry paste which is similar to classic spaghetti but has a large diameter.

Features: Despite its large thickness, this pasta has retained the length and flexibility of classic spaghetti.

Long pasta. Spaghettoni.

Mixed and served: Spaghettoni blends perfectly with different sauces, from light to the most refined.

This type of pasta is also good for preparing dishes with pumpkin flowers, with lamb or beef sauce, chicken liver or giblets or clams.

Cooking time: 13 minutes. Al dente” cooking time: 11 minutes.

Recipes of Spaghettoni dishes: –

Back to the pasta list.


Long macaroni. Bucatini.


Shape: Long paste (approx. 25-30 cm), looks like a straw. It is similar in shape to long and straight tubes with thickness from 0.98 to 1.08 mm, diameter 3-4 mm and width about 3-4 mm.

Description: Bucatini, also known as Perchatelli, first appeared in Naples and belong to a group of long dry paste. In translation, “bucato” stands for permeated or perforated.

Features: Type of pasta with hollow centre.

Long pasta. Bucatini.

Mixed and served: The most suitable sauce for bucatini is matrician sauce with brisket and tomatoes.

In Italian cuisine, this pasta is often served with meat, vegetables, cheese, eggs and anchovies.

Cooking time: 11 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 9 min.


Shape: Long and thin paste with a round cross-section. Size larger than Bucatini.

Description: Maccheroni is a long dry pasta which is a creative interpretation of a pasta format like Maccheroni, one of the most popular pasta variants in Italy.

Features: Unique combination of properties of long and short pasta. Type of pasta with hollow center.

Long pasta. Maccheroncini.

Mixed and served: thanks to its structure, Maccheroncini will perfectly match both thick meat and fish sauces, and light vegetable dressings.

Cooking time: 8-9 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 7 minutes.


Shape: Long and relatively thin paste. It looks like spaghetti, but has a flattened shape.

Overview: Bavette is a long dry and thin noodle paste. It is the first pasta made on the northern coast of the Ligurian Sea in one of the smallest regions of Italy – Liguria.

Features: With its constricted shape, the pasta keeps the sauce well on the surface.

Long pasta. Bavette.

Mixed and served: Bavette will be perfect even if cooked and served just sprinkled with hard grated cheese. It fits perfectly with “Pesto Genovese” sauce (pesto sauce) with the rich flavour of basil and the colorful flavour of the cheese.

Cooking time: 12 minutes. Al dente” cooking time: 10 minutes.


Shape: Long thin paste. Same “nests,” but small. It looks like thin strips of thickness from 1.4 mm to 1.60 mm. Closer in shape to spaghetti, but different in that they are slightly flattened.

Description: Linguine is a classic Italian pasta in the form of thin strips of large-format noodles originating in the Campania region.

Features: Similar to spaghetti, but flattened. Also produced in the form of “nests”.

Long macaroni. Linguine.

Combined and served: Linguine with fresh tomato-based sauces delivers great taste. Fresh vegetables and hot sauce with garlic and fish are also a good combination.

Cooking time: 12 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 10 min.


Form: Thin long and flat dough strips about 7-8 mm wide. The pasta is similar to Tagliatella, but is wider.

Description: Fettuccini is one of the most popular pasta types in Rome. This work of Italian cuisine got its name due to the external similarity with ribbons, from the Italian “Fettuccia”, which means “ribbon”.

Features: The rough and porous texture of the pasta flawlessly keeps the sauce on its surface.

Long pasta. Fettuccine.

Combined and served:

Fettuccine is also served with light sauces of fresh vegetables, spicy herbs and shrimp.

It’s cooking time: 6-7 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 5-6 minutes.


Shape: Macaroni “nests.” Long flat pasta 6.5 mm – 10 mm wide.

Description: Tagliatelle (Italian for “Tagliare”) is a traditional long dry Italian pasta with the addition of eggs from the Emilia Romagna region.

Tagliatielle can be considered as a typical northern Italian pasta from Bologna. It has become the epitome of the city.

Features: The porous and rough texture and flat shape help Tagliatella keep any sauce on its surface well.

Long macaroni. Tagliatelle.

Mixed and served: This pasta blends perfectly with thick sauces of beef, veal, pork and rabbit.

It’s cooking time: 6-7 minutes. Al dente” cooking time: 5-6 minutes.


Shape: Same “nests” of pasta, only big ones. Long pasta as a flat strip of dry noodles about 12-13 mm wide.

Description: Pappardelle is one of the widest types of flat egg pasta. It comes from the administrative center of Florence – Tuscany (Toscana).

Special features: Pappardelle is cooked until it is soft, then it is taken out of the pot, added to the sauce and then waited for its preparation.

Long macaroni. Pappardelle.

Mixed and served: In Tuscany, there are 2 classic rezetas with Pappardelle: with rabbit or hare stew and duck stew sauce.

It’s cooking time: 7-8 minutes. Cooking time: “al dente”: 6-7 minutes.


Shape: Long ribbon paste with wavy edges. The width of the pasta is approx. 14 mm.

Description: Mafaldine is a dry long pasta with characteristic wavy edges. This type of pasta was invented in Naples and was called at that time “rich fettuccelles”.

Features: After cooking, it has a characteristic and irregular consistency, varying on the smooth and wavy part of the pasta.

Long pasta. Mafaldine.

Combined and served:

This type of pasta is quite universal in preparation, it can be filled with game sauces, fish sauces based on seafood.

Cooking time: 9 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 7 min.

Short pasta

Short macaroni. Fusilli.


Shape: In width from approximately 6 to 15 mm, in length from 40 to 70 mm, and in diameter about 10 mm.

Description: Fusilli (Italian Fusilli, translated as small spirals) are traditional Italian pasta products in the form of a spiral of durum wheat.

Features: Fusilli is sometimes dyed with natural dyes such as spinach or beetroot.

Short pasta. Fusilli.

Mixed and served: Fusilli blends perfectly with all kinds of sauces. They can also be used in the preparation of salads.

Preparation time: 11 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 9-10 minutes.


Shape: Just like Fusilli, the dough blades are 3 spiral connected and twisted, but are thinner and shorter in shape.

Description: Girandola has acquired its name because of its resemblance to the Girandola children’s toy, which is a colorful turntable on a stick.

Girandola’s toy.

Features: Just like Fusilli, it is considered one of the universal short pasta types.

Combined and served: The twisted spirals hold the sauce very well on its surface, revealing it with a single palette of amazing flavors.

Short macaroni. Girandole.

It’s cooking time: Six minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 5 minutes.

Penne rigate, our “feathers.”

Shape: Short paste with diagonally oblique cuts and a ribbed surface. Diameter about 8-10 mm, length 35-40 mm and thickness from 1.2 to 1.3 mm.

Description: Penne Rigate is one of the most frequently used short pasta formats in Italy. This type of pasta has received the name for its external similarity to ancient feathers for writing (Italian. “penna” means pen.

Special features: This type of pasta was conceived from the very beginning as a basis for culinary experiments and experiments.

Short pasta. Penne rigate.

Mixed and served: Penne Rigate is very well combined with various sauces, including classic tomato or meat sauces, as well as cream, cheese and fish.

Cooking time: 11 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 10 minutes.

Cavatappi or Cellentani.

Shape: Short, ribbed, twisted, medium thickness paste. Length about 35 mm and thickness from 0.9 to 1.1 mm.

Description: Kawattappi or on other Cellentani is the leader on holding on its surface of a sauce from among popular variants of paste.

Features: One of the most universal types of short pasta. Its shape and structure allow it to hold any sauce on its surface.

Short pasta. Cellentani.

Combined and served: All kinds of sauces from vegetables, meat, fish, various cheeses, etc. Also perfect for making casseroles.

Cooking time: 10 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 8-9 minutes.

Pipe rigate, or our “snails”.

Shape: Short paste that looks like a snail’s shell. Length approximately 25 mm, thickness 1.2-1.4 mm.


Short pasta. Pipe lisce (Italian: Pipe lisce).

There is an opinion that Pipe first appeared in Rome, another opinion suggests that this pasta arose in northern Central Italy.

In addition to Pina rigate, there is another type of this smooth pasta called Pipe lisce.

Features: An unusual shape that allows to hold the sauce inside the pasta. Suitable for any sauce.

Short pasta. Pipe rigate (Italian: Pipe Rigate).

Mixed and served: Pipe Rigate combines very well with different sauces, which are perfectly contained on the outer texture and inside the pasta.

Cooking time: 13 minutes. Cooking time “al dente”: 10-11 minutes.


Shape: Short paste with ribbed surface and straight cut, similar to small tubes.


The name “tortiglione” is derived from specific lines (furrows) ascending in a spiral, which remain on the surface of the paste after its production. The same pattern remains on the parts after machining on the lathe.

Special features: The tortiglioni stands out in its original and simple shape. It allows the sauce to remain both inside and outside on the twisted edges of the paste.

Short macaroni. Tortiglioni.

Mixed and served: This type of pasta blends perfectly with dense and rich meat or cheese sauces with the addition of mushrooms.

Cooking time: 11-12 minutes. Booking time “al dente”: 9-10 minutes.


Shape: Short paste, similar to small elongated and slightly bent tubes, with smooth surface and straight cut.

Description: Maccaroni is one of the classic types of pasta in Italian gastronomic cuisine, which in turn has given a name to all other types of pasta around the world.

Special features: Maccaroni is perfect for culinary experiments. This pasta is quite long and not very wide.

Short pasta. Maccheroni (Italian Maccheroni).

Mixed and served: Thanks to its elongated shape and through-hole, this pasta is recommended to be used with both light and thick tomato, vegetable and meat sauces.

It’s cooking time: 7 minutes. Boiling time “al dente”: 6 minutes.

Figured macaroni

Farfalle (Italian: butterflies)

Farfalle (butterflies) macaroni bows

The uniform:

They look like bows or butterflies. The average size of the porcelain 3-4 cm wide and 2-3 in height.


In Italian “porcelain” means “butterflies”. In Russia, this type of paste is usually called “bows”.

Due to the different thickness of the dough – in the middle thicker and thinner along the edges, it has gained popularity among other pasta.

Pasta Farfalle. Description, features, with what is served


The figured paste porcelain has an interesting structure. In the middle, the dough is thicker and denser, and at the edges it is thinner on the contrary.

It is combined and served:

Pasta farfalle is universal. Its different shapes and sizes will allow you to choose the right kind to any sauce.

It’s cooking time:

Classic porcelain is cooked to “al dente” for 8-9 minutes. It takes 10-11 minutes until they are fully cooked.


Pasta (macaroni) conchiglie (Italian)


Similar to small shells, which have ribs on the surface to better hold the sauce.


Concilliers are short pasta in the form of shells. The word “conchiglia” in Italian means sea shell.

It’s combined and served

Suitable for dishes with thick cream or cheese sauces.

Cooking time

It’s 11 minutes to ready.

Al Dente, nine minutes.


Pasta Gemelli.


The pasta looks like a single s-like thread, wrapped in a spiral about 6-8 cm long.


The curves of Gemelli spirals allow you to cover both thick and light sauces.

Combined and served.

Jamelli is suitable for pasta salad or in combination with light tomato sauces, milk-based sauces or butter-based sauces.

Preparation time

It’s 12 minutes until we’re ready.

Al Dente – 10 minutes.

Recipes of dishes

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Pasta Casarecce.


It is a short pasta, which is as if rolled on itself and bent along the edges. They look like the letter S on the side.


The origin of the pasta is Sicily. In Italian, Casarecce means “homemade” or “homemade”.

Features .

Casarecce is a traditional pasta used in popular Sicilian recipes such as “Sicilian pesto”.

It’s combined and served

Casareccier will approach with light sauces based on Mediterranean ingredients.

Cooking time

It’s 10 minutes to ready.

Al Dente, eight minutes.


Macaroni (pasta) Campanelle pasta (Italian: Sampanelle pasta)


It has the shape of a cone with dissected edges. Also resembles the shape of a bell, funnel or flower. Approximately 4-5 cm in length.


Campanelle means “little bell” in Italian.


The shape of the bell with its thin fluted petals and hollow center perfectly captures any sauce.

Mixed and served.

Campanelle blends perfectly with milk-based sauces such as cheese or béchamel.

Cooking time

It’s 11 minutes to ready.

Al Dente, nine minutes.


Cavatelli pasta.


Cavatelli have an elongated shape with a hollow cavity that is formed by pressing with your finger. These pasta looks like little hot dog buns. They are 2 to 10 cm in size.


It’s considered one of the oldest types of pasta. In Italian, cavatelli means “small hollows”.

Pasta is popular throughout southern Italy and is traditional in Abruzzo,


Cavatelli is made from four ingredients: durum wheat flour, semolina, warm water and a pinch of salt. Usually made by hand, rolling out the dough with one finger.

Mixed and served.

Kawatelli is traditionally served with various ingredients from region to region.

A typical breakfast in Abruzzo and Molise is cavatelli with ragu di ventricina.

In the Basilicata, the classic way to serve cavatelli is with dried sweet peppers (peperoni cruschi), breadcrumbs and chilli peppers (peperoncino).

In Puglia, where this pasta is also called “cicelli”, cavatelli is eaten with arugula and tomatoes or seafood.

It’s cooking time.

It’s eight minutes until we’re ready.

Al Dente, six minutes.


Macaroni (pasta) Orecchiette pasta.


It takes the form of a small dome with a thinner centre than its edge. Its size is about 4-6 cm.


Pasta appeared in Puglia, around the 12th-13th centuries, and is still popular throughout Italy.

Orecchiette translated as “little ears”. It comes from the Italian orecchia, which means “ears”, and the end means “small”.

Features .

In traditional South Italian home-style cuisine, the dough is rolled out and then diced.

The dough is combined and served

A typical holiday dish is Oriciette with rabbit stew.

The traditional dish from Puglia is orecchiette with the tops of turnip, broccoli or cauliflower.

Cooking time

It’s eight minutes until we’re ready.

Al Dente, six minutes.

Pasta for baking


Cannelloni pasta.


Looks like big tubes or cylinders. They are about 12-15 cm long. Diameter about 3-6 cm.

Description .

The Canelloni is a typical Sicilian dish, where it is traditionally eaten on St. Stephen’s Day.


The origin of the cannelloni is not known, but it is believed that this type of pasta was invented back in the 17th century. There are references in books to macheroni ripieni filled pasta.

It’s combined and served

The large amount of space inside Cannelloni tubes makes them one of the most suitable pastes for thick sauces and toppings.

Cooking time

It’s 30 minutes until we’re ready.

Al Dente, 25 minutes.


Pasta Lasagne pasta.


Wide and flat strips of dry dough with wavy or flat edges. Width about 5-8 cm, length 12-20 cm.


Lasagna originated in Italy in Naples. The first recipe was published in the early 14th century in the culinary book Liber de Coquina. It mentioned a dish of dough that was flattened into a thin sheet. It was then cooked, sprinkled with cheese and spices.

Features .

Usually, the lasagna sheets do not need to be boiled before baking. But before cooking, check what the manufacturer writes on the packaging.

It’s combined and served

The traditional lasagne from Naples, lasagne di carnevale, is made up of local sausages, small fried cutlets, steeply cooked eggs, ricotta and mozzarella cheeses. All seasoned with Neapolitan meat stew.

In all cases the lasagna is baked in the oven (al forno).

It’s cooking time.

It’s 25 minutes until we’re ready.

Al Dente – 20 minutes.

Small pasta for soups


Macaroni Anelli pasta.


Type of short pasta in the form of small rings. About 3-4 cm in size.

Description .

In Italian, “anelli” means “little ring.”


The Anelllini has another variant that is smaller in size – Anelllini or Anelletty. These tiny rings are only used in soups.

They are combined and served

Usually they are added to chicken broth and seafood salads. They are also used in casseroles.

It’s cooking time.

It’s 10 minutes to ready.

Al Dente, eight minutes.


Macaroni Stelline pasta.


Small star-shaped pasta with a hole in the centre. Size approx. 1-2 cm.


It’s getting ready fast. The theory is designed to entice children to eat, who associate them with stars and small flowers.


Do not digest and remain firm even in soups.

Mixed and served.

Used in soups, such as ministron. It is also simply added to chicken or meat broth.

Cooking time

It’s seven minutes to ready.

Al Dente, five minutes.

Macaroni for stuffing


Pasta Ravioli pasta.


Ravioli are usually square, although other forms are also used, including round and semi-circular. The size of the ravioli is about 5-10 cm.

Description .

The earliest known mention of ravioli appeared in the 14th century in personal letters of merchant Francesco di Marco Datini.


The main difference from dumplings and dumplings is that the stuffing in the ravioli is not placed raw, but already cooked.

It’s combined and served

Usually ravioli are boiled and served under light tomato or basil sauces or simple broths so as not to interrupt the taste of the filling.

Preparation time

It’s 10 minutes to ready.

Al Dente, nine minutes.


Tortellini pasta.


Like dumplings.


The recipe for a dish called cakeletti appeared in 1570 in a book by chef Bartolomeo Scappi.

Features .

Sometimes they’re called “belly buttons,” hence their alternative name, “belly button.” (Italian ombelico).

Combined and served.

Usually stuffed with meat, like pork loin, prosciutto, mortadella. And also Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, eggs and nutmeg.

It’s cooking time.

It’s 12 minutes until we’re ready.

Al Dente – 10 minutes.