For those on a gluten-free diet, the thought of a big bowl of pasta might not be as appetizing as it is for most. That’s largely because most gluten-free alternatives are infamous for being gummy, chewy, and distinctly different in taste from the traditional pasta most of us enjoy. But the industry has come a long way in the last several years, and those with allergies or intolerances can finally enjoy their favorite dishes with the best gluten-free pasta that tastes just as good (if not better!) as traditional noodles.
This progress in gluten-free options likely comes as a response to the rising demand from people who have removed gluten from their diets. In fact, the number of gluten intolerant children has doubled over the last 25 years, according to a new study. Many suffer from Celiac disease, which is where antibodies to gluten are produced. If someone with the disease accidentally feasts on gluten-packed foods, these antibodies damage the gut lining and can lead to symptoms, including bloating, stomach pain, diarrhea and fatigue.
But even among those who do not have a diagnosed allergy or sensitivity, gluten-free eating is on the rise. According to one study, while an estimated 2.7 million people restrict their diet to gluten-free foods, only 1.76 million Americans actually suffer from the disease that requires the diet.
Whether you are allergic to gluten or just prefer to keep it to a minimum in your diet, there are plenty of reasons to choose try out these alternatives. And with so many options on grocery shelves, you’re sure to find one that fools even the pickiest of eaters. To help kickstart your search for the best gluten-free pasta, StudyFinds searched the internet for expert reviews. This list includes the most frequent recommendations, but if you have a favorite we skipped, be sure to drop it in the comments below!
The List: Best Gluten-Free Pastas, According to Experts
Coming in at our top spot is a pasta made with delicious and nutritious brown rice. The familiar flavor and texture will translate, making it a great option for newly gluten-free eaters. “If you’re looking for a gluten-free pasta that is closest in texture to regular pasta, Jovial is the brand for you,” claims Verywell Fit. “This pasta is made of just brown rice and water in a gluten-free dedicated facility. The brown rice makes it 100% whole grain and while the protein content isn’t significantly high, each serving still has 5 grams.”
“Jovial is a brand that takes pride in its 100% organic products. This Italy-crafted pasta is unlike other rice pasta in its more robust texture. Jovial has just two ingredients, organic brown rice flour and water, so it has a neutral taste,” says Restaurant Clicks.
“Brown rice pasta tastes most like classic pasta and is a good choice for new gluten-free eaters and kids. Reviewers say that this is the best gluten-free pasta they’ve ever tasted,” adds Gluten-Free Palate.
For an extra dose of nutrition in your spaghetti, look no further than Banza. Made with protein-packed chickpeas and coming in all kinds of fun shapes and sizes, Banza is a versatile brand for all your pasta needs. “Banza Chickpea Pasta was one of the first of its kind on the market a few years ago, and is still a winner! The Banza gluten-free pasta line has expanded to include many different shapes that aren’t otherwise available, like Cascatelli and Cavatapi,” says Gluten-Free Palate. “They also make boxed chickpea pasta mac and cheese. Banza is made in the USA, and is high in protein.”
“Banza’s Chickpea Pasta, which is made from a combination of chickpeas, tapioca, and pea protein, isn’t only gluten-free, but it’s also high in protein and fiber, something that some of the other options on this list are missing,” adds The Spruce Eats. “Reviewers describe the texture of the pasta as ‘thicker’ and ‘al dente’ and claim that if you serve it to your gluten-loving friends without telling them, they’ll never be able to taste the difference. And since it’s a heartier pasta, it also holds up well in the refrigerator, so it’s an ideal option for meal prepping.”
For extra health-conscious shoppers, Banza goes the extra mile. “Additionally, each serving contains 20% of the recommended daily value of iron, making it a welcome addition to any healthy diet,” explains Restaurant Clicks. “With Banza chickpea pasta, you can feel safe knowing you’re not getting any preservatives or additives.”
If you want the quality and flavor of an Italian restaurant without the gluten, look no further. Cappello’s pasta is made fresh and frozen until you’re ready to prepare a delicious dish. “When you have a preference for fresh pasta instead of dried, try Cappello’s,” says Verywell Fit. “This pasta contains quality sourced ingredients including cage-free eggs and almond flour and is frozen at peak freshness to retain its flavor and texture. In addition to being gluten-free, Cappello’s Fettuccine is also grain-, soy-, and dairy-free, and non-GMO.”
“Fresh pasta that’s gluten-free? And it’s delish? It’s not a fever dream — Cappello’s is real, and it’s (probably) in a store near you,” claims FitOn.
“Unlike the other dry pastas on this list, Capello’s, which feels the closest to homemade pasta, is kept frozen until you’re ready to eat it. But the good thing about this that many people also highlight: Once you put it in boiling water, it’s ready to go in 90 seconds,” adds The Spruce Eats. “In addition to fettuccine, Cappello’s also offers spaghetti, lasagna sheets, and gnocchi, in a regular or sweet potato version.”
This familiar pantry staple is now available gluten-free. And thanks to Barilla’s careful crafting of the recipe, even the most sensitive taste buds may struggle to notice a difference. “Barilla Gluten Free Pasta is a tasty, affordable, and reliable favorite,” says Gluten-Free Palate. “The main ingredients are corn and rice. Barilla is a pasta name that is trusted all over for quality. Their gluten-free products are non-GMO, certified gluten-free, and easy to find in grocery stores.”
“Barilla is by far the superior gluten-free pasta. Because it’s made from a magical combination of rice and corn flours, it has almost the exact same texture and taste as wheat-based pasta,” adds NY Mag. “It’s best fresh, as most things are, but if needed, it can last about three days in the fridge with or without sauce on it. Plus, from a budget perspective, this pasta is only 70 cents more than Barilla’s wheat-based pasta.”
“Barilla makes by far the best gluten-free spaghetti noodles. Many companies have tried to nail the art of gluten-free noodles, but Barilla separates itself from the crowd. This pasta is versatile, certified gluten-free and delicious,” boasts Happy Celiac. “Whether you’re cooking for the whole family, or just looking for something to please your tastebuds, this is one of the best gluten-free pastas out there. Prepare this pasta with fresh vegetables, chia seeds, cheese and voilà! You have the best tasting gluten-free pasta in your bowl.”
Another brown rice pasta, Tinkyada prides itself on its versatility and appealing texture. Coming in several shapes, you’ll be able to easily find an option that fits your dinner plans. “Tinkyada is another brand that produces amazing pasta from non-GMO brown rice,” says Restaurant Clicks. “They offer the most variety compared to the other rice pasta brands, so you’re sure to find whatever pasta you need. This pasta stays firm even after it’s cooked, a unique feat among rice pasta.”
“Gluten-free pasta doesn’t come in too many novelty shapes,” adds NY Mag. “The brands worth buying typically only make penne, fusilli, and spaghetti, whereas wheat-based pasta comes in a plethora of shapes and sizes. Tinkyada, refreshingly, makes lots of fun shapes and sizes of its pasta, like elbows and what it calls ‘spirals.'”
“Who doesn’t love rice? Everyone loves rice and brown rice pasta is even better,” claims Happy Celiac. “Pair Tinkyada’s brown rice pasta with fresh celery, tomatoes, romaine lettuce, avocado, mayonnaise and lime juice. That’s a simple, healthy, gluten-free pasta recipe anyone will love. Tinkyada has put all their efforts into making their brown rice pasta standout.”
You might also be interested in:
- Best Gluten-Free Snacks
- Best Pasta Sauces
- Best Italian Cookbooks
- Best Pasta Brands
- Best Cookware Sets
- Bon Appetit
- The Spruce Eats
- Verywell Fit
- Happy Celiac
- NY Mag
- The Kitchn
- Restaurant Clicks
- Gluten-Free Palate
Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This article may contain affiliate links.