I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (2023)

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (1)

It seems like only yesterday that finding good gluten-free pasta seemed nearly impossible. Fortunately, that has changed, and there are now more gluten-free options than ever. For those of us with celiac disease or who can't eat gluten (hello!), this influx of new gluten-free products is very welcome. However, it also presents a new challenge: With so many different options on the market, which gluten-free pasta is the best?

found oneGluten Free Favorite FindsNow the situation is a little more complicated. With the wide variety of ingredients for rice, corn, chickpeas, and just about every other gluten-free ingredient, deciding which box to choose can be tricky. That's why we're here to help!

From kid-friendly options to fresh wontons to suit your tastei made it from scratch, we've found the best gluten-free pasta. Through testing dozens of popular brands, as well as market research, we considered sauce ingredients, versatility, shape and staying power. We also interviewed chefs and nutritionists.Brianna KeelingLearn some of the precise details about what makes the best gluten-free pasta so delicious. Read on for our favorites.

our top picks

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The Best Chickpea Pasta:

Banza Bottle Opener on Amazon

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overall better

no variety of pasta

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (2)

advantage:Each ZENB slice has a resilient and durable structure that amazingly mimics traditional pasta. This pasta leaves no leftovers and is made with only yellow peas, which means no additives, fillers or mystery ingredients.

Compared: Although the taste and texture of ZENB pasta are excellent, if you want to buy a box, you may have problems because they are not sold individually. Plus, they only offer a few different cuts.

ZENB achieves an almost unrivaled gluten-free pasta texture using a single ingredient: yellow peas (skins included!). The six-pack of variety packs includes three cuts: rotini (a personal favorite), elbow, and penne, each cooked to a chewy but never mushy consistency that will last for a couple or two in the freezer days and can be eaten. Use at room temperature for pasta salads, etc.

In our tests, we found these little treats to be smooth, luscious, and perfectly delicious no matter what they're served with or how they're prepared.

Price at launch: $30 for a 6-pack

  • basic ingredients: yellow peas
  • protein: 12 g per serving
  • fiber: 7 g per serving

The Best Chickpea Pasta

Banza bottle opener

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (3)

advantage:These mild-tasting noodles retain their shape in a variety of applications. Plus, they're higher in protein and lower in carbohydrates than other options.

Compared:We have found that this cavatappi can become mushy if cooked too long, so more careful cooking is required. We also noticed that depending on the sauce, this pasta might not absorb the sauce well.

Fan-favorite, Banza Cavatappi is a premium high-fiber, high-protein option without the off-flavor that other soy brands can have. In addition to its dietary size (an impressive 20 grams of protein and 8 grams of fiber per 3.5-ounce serving), this curly Q-cut has a delightfully springy texture and great taste.

In our taste test, we especially liked this form of cavatappi. We found that its hollow center successfully contained pouches of sauce for bite after bite.

Price at launch: $45 for a 6-pack

  • basic ingredients: chickpeas
  • protein: 20 g per serving
  • fiber: 8 g per serving

Best Brown Rice Pasta

Jovial Pasta Farfalle Brown Rice 100% Organic Gluten Free

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (4)

advantage:This certified organic farfar has only one ingredient. They hold their shape really well and keep well, making them a great option for leftovers.

Compared:This pasta is lower in protein and fiber than bean pasta, and the center tends to remain firm until fully cooked. Getting a chewy texture with this cut can be tricky.

Imagine our surprise when this single ingredient rice pasta came outNocrash in hisspaghettiDuring our testing! Versatile, great for leftovers, and very absorbent when soaking up sauces, this Farfalle is perfect for many pasta dishes, including cold pasta salads and baked pasta (can't say that for all the gluten-free options talk).

Making sure these bow ties aren't overcooked or undercooked can be a daunting task, but when they're fully cooked, they're sure to make your gluten-free pasta of choice.

Price at launch: $9

  • basic ingredients: whole rice
  • protein: 5 g per serving
  • fiber: 2 g per serving

better organic

Old Harvest Quinoa Pasta, Elbow

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (5)

advantage:We found that these elbows had a subtle and varied flavor and could be cooked al dente without bitterness. Bonus points for its excellent ability to preserve sauces.

Compared:This option is not suitable for overcooked or baked pasta.

Go ask a friend who eats gluten to try these elbows. Our guess is they don't lack gluten. You'll find this springy, buttery, springy cut pasta at its best. We recommend this special corn, quinoa, and rice-based pasta served with a classic tomato sauce or a simple butter and cheese dressing. While it may not quite retain its shape or consistency if added to baking or salads, it will certainly absorb the full flavor of the sauce.

Price at launch: $9

  • basic ingredients: corn, rice and quinoa
  • protein: 4 g per serving
  • fiber: 3 g per serving

Best Macaroni and Cheese

Camp Classic Cheddar Macaroni and Cheese

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (6)

advantage:These vitamin-packed boxed macaroni and cheese contain "hidden" veggies, pack more protein than other boxed options, and offer a vegan option for maximum inclusion. Plus, they use no artificial colors or dyes.

Compared:At just over $6 a box, this Mac is on the pricier side. We also don't like that it requires the addition of butter and milk (or vegan alternatives) after cooking.

Many of us know and love boxed mac and cheese, but Camp takes this tried-and-true staple to another level. Both the noodles and the sauce contain "hidden" vegetables (which add nutrients and bring out the flavors of the orange and cheese), and there are vegan options. This quick and easy meal is affordable for many and doesn't skimp on the nutrition.

Delicious, cheesy, spicy and ready in less than ten minutes, these boxes aren't just for kids. Oh, and did we mention it's also gluten-free?

Price at launch: $20/3 packs

  • basic ingredients: corn and brown rice
  • protein: 12 g per serving
  • fiber: 3 g per serving

The Best Red Lentil Pasta

Gluten-Free Red Lentil Fusilli from Taste Republic

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (7)

advantage:With minimal cooking time, this fresh find is a grain-free option with minimal ingredients for a creamy texture and silky mouthfeel.

Compared:However, since this fusilli is not dry, it has a short shelf life and requires careful cooking as it is easy to overcook.

This fresh red lentil pasta turns a stunning orange color when cooked (yes, it looks like a work of art when tossed with pesto, trust me). It also has a slightly sweet, subtle and adaptable flavor and takes just two minutes to cook. Since this gluten-free treat comes fresh and not dried, it has a 5-day freezer shelf life, but you can freeze it if you need to keep it longer. No need to defrost before cooking. Can be added directly to the pot.

Price at launch: $60 for a 6-pack

  • basic ingredients: red lentils
  • protein: 10 g per serving
  • fiber: 4 g per serving

Best Stuffed Pasta

Capello Five Cheese Ravioli

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (8)

advantage:With a soft, chewy crust and a creamy, versatile filling, this fresh pasta has the perfect texture and holds together even when overcooked.

Compared:This may not be the best option for those with allergies to products other than gluten, such as dairy, nuts, or eggs. These wontons can also become rubbery if overcooked or left without the sauce for too long.

Unlike the plethora of dry pastas out there, finding a gluten-free stuffed pasta that doesn't stick, runny, or mess when cooked is no small feat. But trust me, for those of us who used to eat gluten but can't anymore, this wonton wrap is a blast from the past. The almond base imparts a light sweetness to the dough, which pairs perfectly with the light, umami-focused sauce.

Pro Tip: A delicious combination of browned butter and sage with lots of Parmesan and cracked pepper.

Price at launch: $20

  • basic ingredients: Almond powder
  • protein: 17 g per serving
  • fiber: 2 g per serving

best pasta ever

Grain-Free Happy Tapioca Pasta

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (9)

advantage:This paste is very flexible and can be swirled without breaking. We love that it's grain-free (aka paleo-friendly) and has a smooth buttery flavor that goes with any sauce.

Compared:Despite their merits, these pastas are protein-free, harden when cold, and can stick together if overcooked and not fully incorporated into the sauce.

These grain-free pastas are super pliable. I'm sure you can play a tug of war with a piece without breaking it. In addition to its excellent ability to swirl around a fork, this root vegetable-based option acts like a sauce sponge, providing a neutral base to soak up whatever flavors you decide to pair it with. If you're looking for a linguine and clam situation, this cut is great. We recommend eating this pasta warm to capture its best flavor.

Price at launch: $13

  • basic ingredients: tapioca flour
  • protein: 1 g per serving
  • fiber: 4 g per serving

Best for Lasagna

Capello Almond Flour Lasagna Sheets, frozen

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (10)

advantage:We love these all-purpose pasta chips for a variety of culinary purposes. They're also paleo friendly and won't tear or crack during cooking.

Compared:These sheets are not suitable for people with nut or egg allergies. They must also be kept frozen, which limits their portability and shelf life.

These ready-to-use sheets can be used to make anything from hand pies to macaroni and, of course, lasagna. These almond flours are grain and gluten free and can be handled like fresh artisan dough by simply thawing. The smell and texture of these sheets will fool family and friends alike: they're a little pliable, pleasantly mellow in smell, and super pliable. You can even cut them into wide strips to make linguine in a pinch.

Price at launch: $12

  • basic ingredients: Almond powder
  • protein: 9 g per serving
  • fiber: 3 g per serving

best for kids

Tolerance Foods Organic Hunting Green Lentils

I'm a Celiac Pastry Chef and These Are the 10 Best Gluten-Free Pasta I've Tried (11)

advantage:For children's pasta, this product is very high in protein, low in fat, and has a low glycemic index. We love that it's just one ingredient, but doesn't affect the taste or texture.

Compared:Be careful not to overcook this animal-style cut, as it will thicken if it sits in the pasta pan too long.

These adorable little green lentil animals have the highest protein content of any option on this list and are the perfect way to add nutrition to your kids' (or your own) diet in a fun and delicious way. This cut may take longer to cook to perfection, so don't be intimidated if you need to wait at the pan longer than other gluten-free options.

In addition, Tolerant FOODS producesChickpea Alphabetyred lentil galaxyIf you or your kids don't like zoology, there's pasta to eat.

Price at launch: $8

  • basic ingredients: green lentils
  • protein: 25 g per serving
  • fiber: 12 g per serving

How We Choose the Best Gluten-Free Pasta

We combined real-world testing insights and market research when making our selections. We rated each brand of gluten-free pasta based on taste, texture, and versatility. For the varieties we tested, we paid close attention to how firm each pasta shape was for the recommended cooking time and each pasta's ability to absorb various sauces, such as tomato sauce and pesto. Bonus points are awarded to pasta brands that can be refrigerated and reheated without losing flavor or texture.

In addition, we also work withBrianna Keeling, chef and registered dietitian, learn some of the precise details about the nutritional content of gluten-free pasta, how gluten-free pasta differs from traditional wheat pasta, and what makes the best gluten-free pasta taste so good. Excellent.

factors to consider

basic ingredients

Your choice of key gluten-free pasta ingredients will make the most difference in your finished dish. Not only do they greatly affect the flavor, but the composition of the ingredients is also a key factor in the texture of the cut. If, like me, you have certain food allergies or intolerances, you pay as much attention to its ingredients as you would any other pasta. Just because it's gluten-free doesn't necessarily mean it's also nut-, dairy-, and soy-free.

Another reason to pay close attention to ingredients is to figure out their nutritional value. Despite the common misconception that gluten-free products are naturally healthier than gluten-containing products, some gluten-free pasta may contain less protein or fiber than wheat pasta.

taste and texture

Ingredients are the key to getting the desired pasta flavor and texture. Because gluten is a protein, it provides elasticity, structure, elasticity and flexibility. Without this key ingredient, many types of gluten-free pasta fall apart or, worse, turn to mush. Choosing a bean-based option will minimize your chances of suffering this dire outcome, since peas and beans are also high in gluten. The only caveat with diced beans is that they can sometimes taste bitter.

While gluten-free, grain-based pastas tend to be silkier, sweeter, and smoother in flavor, they often lack structure. For this reason, you may want to consider pasta made from corn, rice, and other grain pastas with binders such as xanthan gum or tapioca starch to help improve texture and elasticity.

cooking time

Gluten-free pasta usually takes less time to cook than conventional pasta. While each gluten-free food has different cooking directions and times, we've found that dry pasta typically cooks in 6-9 minutes and fresh or frozen 2-3 minutes. Without the structural support of gluten molecules, these rice, corn, quinoa and soy foods can quickly become mushy or sticky when overcooked. When cooking gluten-free pasta, it is important to pay attention to the cooking time. There is more air on the negative side.

common problem

  • Which gluten-free pasta tastes the best?

    Taste is subjective. However, bean pasta may actually have a rounder, creamier and slightly earthy flavor compared to the subtle, understated flavor of grain-based pasta. However, unlike traditional gluten-containing pasta, gluten-free pasta is not as common.

    Keeling equates choosing gluten-free pasta with wine: "When people ask me what my favorite wine is, my answer is always 'Well, what do I eat?' With gluten-free pasta, you have to ask yourself the same question."

    While the flavors of corn or rice complement baked pasta, chickpea pasta might go even better with a simple pesto sauce. Experimenting with various gluten-free brands, cuts and toppings is an important step in deciding which pasta tastes best in various dishes.

  • Which gluten-free pasta is best with macaroni and cheese?

    To this question, Killeen responded with a specific brand: "I like Bionaturae. They haveamazing macaroni"Whenever she's making something like a large baked macaroni and cheese, she turns to this particular cut because it stands up," she explains. ’ But don’t worry if you can’t get that particular square. “If I can’t find that,” he said, “I’ll chooseBarillaI would cook it a minute or two less than it says. "

  • Why do gluten-free pasta fall apart during cooking?

    The main textural ingredient of traditional pasta (or any gluten-based bread, pastry or product) is gluten. Gluten is a protein structure, or series of molecules that physically supports dough to provide elastic, springy and structurally sound dough components.

    "Gluten-free pasta doesn't have the same structure," Keeling says. "Gluten is an amazing structural network that allows for greater flexibility." Without this support structure, some pasta might fall apart in the pan. That's why it's important to choose legumes or look for cereals that contain binders like tapioca starch or xanthan gum that hold chunks together and give them the perfect chewiness.

  • What is gluten-free pasta made of?

    Gluten-free pasta makers have to get creative. Now you can find just about any product made with gluten-free ingredients. We gravitate toward two broad categories: legumes and grains. Pasta made with beans uses ingredients such as lentils, chickpeas, and beans. The main components of grain foods include rice, corn, quinoa, and buckwheat.

  • Do gluten-free pasta contain carbohydrates?

    In short: yes. "If you look at the 1:1 ratio, some gluten-free foods have a lot more calories," Keeling says. As far as carbohydrates go, he says gluten-containing pasta and gluten-free pasta The carbohydrate content between can sometimes be comparable, depending on the ingredients. One thing to keep in mind when shopping for gluten-free foods: "Without the protein and fiber (which slows absorption), they might just be a pure carb craze."

  • How to cook gluten-free pasta?

    Just like regular cuts, make sure the water is salted and boiling before adding gluten-free pasta (both dry and fresh). As for cooking time, Keeling says, "I always cook gluten-free pasta for the recommended amount of time, especially if I'm reheating or cooking with another sauce." In general, though, she recommends Skip a minute or two when cooking gluten-free to ensure you avoid the dreaded mushy texture.

our experience

Stella is a former pastry chef turned food writer with years of experience testing and researching all things food. His work on discovering interesting new flavors and the tools to help create them can be found at EdibleLA, Apartment Therapy, and Kitchn. Nearly a decade ago, Stella discovered that she had celiac disease and spent a considerable amount of culinary work discovering and creating compliant gluten-free alternatives. In addition to testing dozens of gluten-free pastas for this article, she also checkedBrianna KeelingChef and Registered Dietitian, for her expert advice.


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