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Variations of Pasta: Volume One

The world has produced over 600 variations on pasta, while it would be almost impossible to fill one blog post with all variations of pasta in the world, we hope to cover the basics with our guide to italian pasta. Let’s get started!

Long Pasta

Perhaps to most recognizable form of pasta is long pasta which is crafted through extrusion or the process of rolling and cutting dough into thin cylinders. Here are some popular forms of long pasta and some lesser known delicacies.


variations of pasta

Long, thin strands of pasta made with semolina flour, egg and water. Often served with a red marinara sauce and meatballs, the quintessential pasta dish. Thinner strands are called spaghettini and thicker noodles have been dubbed spaghettoni.


Also known as angel hair, cappellini is the thinnest form of pasta in italian cuisine. You don’t want to overload this pasta with a heavy sauce like alfredo. In my opinion the best sauce for cappellini is olive oil or butter with some cracked black pepper and grated parmigiano-reggiano.



One of my favorite noodles, Pici are incredibly thick cylinders that can really hold the weight of a heavy sauce. Pici is reminiscent of Japanese Udon noodles with a deliciously eggy flavor.


Long tubular pieces of pasta often baked with red sauce and cheese.

Ribbon Cut Pasta

Ribbon style pasta is rolled with a pasta machine and then cut to size.


Tasty Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo

Ribbon pasta that is cut to approximately 6.5 millimeters wide. Fettucini is often served with a cream based sauce like Alfredo or Vodka sauce.


Wide noodles with fluted edges make up the base of the baked dish lasagna.


Pappardelle with Corn, Lobster and Pancetta

Flat wide noodle ribbons, delicious when paired with olive oil and mushrooms.

Short Cut Extruded Pasta

Short tubular pasta is great for baking, boiling or stuffing.



Basically the pasta equivalent of the popular Italian pastry Cannoli, Cannelonni is often stuffed with ricotta cheese and ground sausage.


Spiral shaped macaroni that is often served with a pesto sauce.



We’re all familiar with this popular dish, macoroni originated in Italy and means “small, bent tubes.”


Small angular tubes similar to rigatoni.


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