5 Best Pasta Dishes

Deliciously new ways to cook your noodles


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5 Best Pasta Dishes Pasta is a dinner staple. It's simple enough for hectic weeknight meals,  can be elegantly dressed up for date night dinners at home, and is basic and tasty enough to be attractive to even the pickiest of eaters. Really, what choosy eater out there won't have spaghetti when given the option?

Cuisines around the world use everything from rice noodles to whole wheat fusilli as a base for delicious, hearty and traditional meals. With this range of pasta shapes and purposes, there really is a dish out there for everyone, it's just a matter of blending together you're favorite ingredients.

With all of these choices, it can be overwhelmingly tempting to just stick to what you know and throw some spaghetti in a bowl with marinara sauce. While this is always a delicious go-to, especially with some fresh Pecorino-Romano grated on top, there are plenty of other dishes that are equally simple and satisfying but might take you a bit further out of your comfort zone.

So don't fall into the routine pasta trap! Switch things up a bit and read on for our top five pasta dishes, our "best of pasta" from the What's Cookin' database.

Be sure to let us know you're favorite way to cook up the chewy, fork-twirling noodles below!

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  • Snooth User: Lamebear
    701439 22

    Here's how to cook the perfect al dente pasta: boil a goodly amount of salted water but not as much as recipes call for, by half. Toss in your pasta & let come back to boil for 30 seconds. (Stir it, course, to keep from sticking.) Cover, turn off the heat, & let stand for 12 minutes. Pour off the water. Taste it. You won't believe how perfect it is. (Big pasta sheets take a little more steaming time but the 12-minute rule still works.)

    Feb 02, 2012 at 2:59 AM

  • Interesting technique, but wouldn't it depend on the type of pasta? Might work for spaghetti, but wouldn't something like angel hair be a limp mess? Not trying to doubt you, just asking...

    Feb 02, 2012 at 10:11 AM

  • Snooth User: Mimi Kim
    Hand of Snooth
    648878 3,074

    This technique reminds me of the one I use for hard boiled eggs. It sounds like it could work for some dried pasta...

    Feb 02, 2012 at 10:46 AM

  • Snooth User: Lamebear
    701439 22

    Waynebradby is right. I tried to indicate that for specialty pastas, like big sheets for lasagna, you have to make adjustments. I'd cut a minute or two off the soaking time for angel hair, but it could depend on how much pasta you're cooking, among other considerations. One size never fits all, but for penne, spaghetti, linguine, perciatelli, farfale, fettucine, tagliatelle, fusilli, tortellini -- all the medium weight dried pastas, it works like magic every time. Just try it. You'll quickly learn how to make adjustments.

    Feb 02, 2012 at 4:12 PM

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