Use Your Noodle! Spaghetti vs Linguine vs Fettuccine

Turns out, there is an official holiday for just about any food you can imagine. Case in point: September 15 is National Linguine Day.

Imagine! A whole day, just to celebrate one kind noodle!

So, we wondered: what’s the difference between spaghetti, linguine, and fettuccine, which sit next to each other on the grocery store shelf, and look so similar?

For those keeping score at home, linguine is wider and flatter than spaghetti, about 6-9 mm wide. The name linguine means “little tongues” (which is either whimsical or kind of gross, depending on your perspective).

Spaghetti (or thinner, even more delicate angel hair pasta) traditionally accompanies meat and tomato dishes. Linguine are often served with slightly more substantial seafood or pesto, or with a moderately chunky sauce like AllSpice customer Alecia’s Prosciutto Pepper Linguine.

Close noodle relation fettuccine is flatter and wider than linguine. Fettuccine is hearty enough to accommodate heavier sauces made with cream, like the quintessential Fettuccine Alfredo, or thick sauces, like bolognese, or carbonara, which includes cream, egg and bacon (and is divine).

Bottom line? There are no “rules” about which types of pasta you must use with different kinds of sauces. Rule-of-thumb is that, the thicker the pasta, the heavier the sauce or topping it can accommodate.

Check out the range of Pasta recipes we’ve collected, and decide for yourself which kinds of pasta pair best with each of the sauces.

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