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The 5 Best Kinds of Pasta for Arrabiata

Do you love the taste of Arrabiata sauce?

If so, you know that the perfect pasta is essential for making a delicious dish.

Arrabiata sauce has a spicy kick that can be enhanced or toned down depending on which type of pasta you use.

So, let’s cover the best types of pasta for this sauce!

Read Also: Arrabiata Wine Pairing – Best Wines To Pair With Arrabiata

What is Arrabiata?


Arrabiata (or “arrabbiata” in Italian) is a spicy tomato-based sauce that originated in the Lazio region of Italy.

It’s made with garlic, tomatoes, and red chili peppers cooked in olive oil.

The name arrabiata literally translates to “angry,” referring to the spiciness of the dish.

The traditional recipe for arrabiata calls for whole peeled tomatoes, garlic cloves, fresh parsley leaves, extra virgin olive oil, and dried red chili pepper flakes or fresh hot peppers such as jalapeños or serranos.

The ingredients are sautéed together until fragrant before adding the tomatoes and simmering until thickened.

Salt and black pepper can be added to taste at this point.

Arrabiata is usually served over pasta such as spaghetti or penne but can also be used as a pizza topping or served with grilled meats like chicken or pork chops.

The 5 Best Kinds of Pasta for Arrabiata

If you’re looking to make an Arrabiata pasta dish, it is important to choose the right type of pasta.

Here are five types of pastas that will work perfectly with this Italian classic:

1. Penne


Penne is a type of pasta that is shaped like a tube with ridges on the outside.

It’s one of the most popular types of pasta, and it comes in many sizes, from short to long.

The name “penne” comes from the Italian word for “quill,” which refers to its shape.

  • Varieties: Penne can be made from different types of flour, including semolina, whole wheat, and gluten-free varieties. There are also flavored versions such as spinach penne or tomato penne that have added ingredients for extra flavor.
  • Common Uses: Penne is often used in dishes such as arrabiata (spicy tomato sauce), pesto, carbonara (creamy cheese sauce), and primavera (vegetable sauce). It’s also great for cold salads or baked casseroles because it holds up well when cooked al dente (firm but not hard).

2. Rigatoni


Rigatoni is a type of pasta that is tubular in shape and has ridges along the outside.

It is slightly larger than penne, with a diameter of about 1/2 inch (1 cm).

The ridges on the outside help to hold sauces and other ingredients.

It can be made from either white or whole wheat flour, depending on your preference.

  • Varieties: There are many varieties of rigatoni available, including traditional Italian-style rigatoni as well as flavored versions such as spinach and garlic or tomato basil. You can also find gluten-free versions made with rice flour or quinoa flour.
  • Common Uses: Rigatoni is often used in baked dishes like lasagna, but it can also be served simply tossed with olive oil, herbs, vegetables, and cheese for a quick meal. It’s also great for making arrabiata sauce—a spicy tomato sauce—or any other type of creamy sauce that you want to cling to the ridges of the pasta.

3. Fusilli


Fusilli is a type of pasta that is shaped like a corkscrew.

It comes in different sizes, from short to long, and can be made with different types of flour such as durum wheat or semolina.

The shape of the pasta helps it hold onto sauces better than other shapes, making it ideal for dishes like arrabiata.

  • Varieties: There are many varieties of fusilli available on the market today. Some popular varieties include bucatini (longer strands), rotini (short spirals), and farfalle (bow-tie shaped). You can also find whole wheat versions of fusilli if you’re looking for something healthier.
  • Common Uses: Fusilli is most commonly used in Italian dishes such as arrabiata, which features tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, and chili peppers cooked together to create a spicy sauce. The shape of the pasta helps it hold onto the sauce better than other shapes would. Fusilli can also be used in cold salads or baked casseroles; its versatility makes it an excellent choice for any dish!

4. Farfalle


Farfalle is a type of pasta that is shaped like bow ties or butterflies.

It comes in various sizes and can be made from different types of flour, including durum wheat semolina, whole wheat, and even gluten-free varieties.

The name “farfalle” comes from the Italian word for “butterflies” due to its unique shape.

  • Varieties: Farfalle come in many shapes and sizes; some are small while others are large enough to fill up a plate. There are also different colors available such as green spinach farfalle, red tomato farfalle, yellow saffron farfalle, and black squid ink farfalle.
  • Common Uses: Farfalle is often used in cold salads but it can also be served hot with sauces such as arrabiata sauce (a spicy tomato sauce). It pairs well with vegetables such as mushrooms or broccoli and can also be used in soups or casseroles.

5. Spaghetti


Spaghetti is a type of pasta that is long and thin, with a round cross-section.

It is made from durum wheat semolina flour and water, and it can be found in many shapes, sizes, and colors.

The most common shape is the classic spaghetti strand which measures about 1/8 inch thick.

  • Varieties: There are many varieties of spaghetti available on the market today including whole wheat, gluten-free, spinach-infused, tomato-infused, squid ink-infused, and more. Each variety has its own unique flavor profile so you can experiment to find the one that best suits your taste buds.
  • Common Uses: Spaghetti is one of the most popular pastas for making arrabiata sauce because it holds up well to the spicy tomato sauce. Arrabiata sauce typically includes tomatoes (fresh or canned), garlic, olive oil, red pepper flakes (or fresh chili peppers), oregano or basil leaves for seasoning; all cooked together until they form a thick sauce. To make arrabiata with spaghetti simply cook the noodles according to package instructions then toss them with the prepared arrabiata sauce before serving.


In conclusion, there are many different types of pasta that can be used to make a delicious arrabiata sauce.

The best kinds of pasta for arrabiata are penne, rigatoni, fusilli, farfalle, and spaghetti. Each of these types of pasta has a unique shape and texture that will hold up to the spicy tomato sauce and provide an enjoyable bite.

When making arrabiata, it is important to choose the right type of pasta to ensure that the dish is flavorful and enjoyable.

With these five types of pasta, you are sure to have a delicious meal that will leave you feeling satisfied.


The 5 Best Kinds of Pasta for Arrabiata

As a self-proclaimed pasta enthusiast, I'm always looking for new and interesting takes on this classic dish. With that in mind, I'm sharing my top five kinds of pasta to use when making arrabiata. I'll provide a brief overview of each one and explain why they work so well with this spicy tomato-based sauce. By the end of this article, you'll have all the information you need to create the perfect arrabiata.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Pasta
Cuisine Italian
Servings 4 people
Calories 365 kcal


  • Penne
  • Rigatoni
  • Fusilli
  • Farfalle
  • Spaghetti


  • Pick your favorite type of pasta from this list to serve with Arrabiata.
  • Prepare the rest of your meal, and enjoy!
jenny happy muncher
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Jenny has always been passionate about cooking, and she uses her platform to share her joy of food with others. Her recipes are easy to follow, and she loves giving tips and tricks to help others create their own unique culinary creations.