If you’re a fan of Italian food, then you know that one of the most delicious dishes is pasta with clam sauce.
But what kind of pasta should you use?
The best pasta for clam sauce is linguine. Its long, thin shape is perfect for capturing the flavor of the clam sauce. Other options include spaghetti, fettuccine, and angel hair pasta. Try adding some herbs or red pepper flakes to give your dish an extra kick!
There are so many different types and shapes of pasta that it can be hard to choose just one.
To make your decision easier, here are seven kinds of pasta that go perfectly with clam sauce.
From spaghetti to farfalle, each type brings its own unique flavor and texture to the dish – so no matter which one you choose, your dinner will be sure to please!
What is Clam Sauce?
Clam sauce is a type of seafood-based sauce made from clams, butter, and other ingredients.
It is commonly used as a topping for pasta dishes such as linguine or spaghetti.
Clam sauce can be either white (made with cream) or red (made with tomatoes).
The white version is usually referred to as “clam chowder” while the red version is often called “marinara” or “spaghetti alle vongole” in Italian cuisine.
Clam sauce has a rich flavor that comes from the combination of clams and butter, which are cooked together until they form a thick paste.
This paste can then be combined with other ingredients such as garlic, onions, herbs, spices, wine, and/or tomato puree to create different variations on the classic clam sauce recipe.
The resulting sauces range from light and creamy to robustly flavored depending on how much additional seasoning is added.
Clam sauces are popular because they provide an easy way to add seafood flavor without having to prepare fresh clams each time you want them in your dish.
They also pair well with many types of pasta dishes due to their savory taste and creamy texture.
The 7 Best Kinds of Pasta for Clam Sauce
Clam sauce is a great way to spruce up your pasta dishes.
The key is finding the right type of pasta that will best compliment the flavors of the clam sauce.
Here are seven types of pastas that can be used in clam sauce dishes, each offering a unique taste and texture:
Spaghetti is a type of pasta that is long, thin, and cylindrical in shape.
It is made from durum wheat semolina flour and water, and it can be found in many shapes and sizes.
The most common form of spaghetti is the classic long strands which are usually served with tomato-based sauces or seafood dishes.
When cooking spaghetti, it’s important to use plenty of salted boiling water so that the pasta has enough room to move around while cooking.
Boil for 8-10 minutes until al dente (tender but still firm).
Once cooked through, drain the spaghetti in a colander before adding your favorite sauce or topping.
Linguine is a type of pasta that is long and flat, similar to fettuccine but thinner.
It originated in Italy and is made from durum wheat flour, water, and sometimes eggs.
The name linguine comes from the Italian word for “little tongues,” which refers to its shape.
- To cook linguine perfectly every time, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.
- Add the linguine and stir it occasionally until it’s al dente (tender but still slightly firm). This should take about 8 minutes or according to package instructions.
- Once cooked, drain the pasta in a colander and rinse with cold water if desired before adding your favorite sauce or topping.
When making clam sauce with linguine, you’ll want to start by sautéing garlic in olive oil until fragrant then add white wine or chicken broth along with canned clams (drained) and seasonings like parsley, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt & pepper.
Simmer for 5-10 minutes then toss with cooked linguine before serving!
Fettuccine is a type of pasta that originated in Italy.
It is made from durum wheat flour and eggs, and it has a flat, wide shape with edges that are slightly frayed.
The name comes from the Italian word for “little ribbons” which describes its appearance perfectly.
Fettuccine can be found fresh or dried in most grocery stores, and it pairs well with creamy sauces like Alfredo or clam sauce.
- To cook fettuccine properly every time, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.
- Once boiling, add the fettuccine to the pot and stir gently until all of the noodles are submerged in the water.
- Cook for 8-10 minutes (or according to package instructions) stirring occasionally so that they don’t stick together.
- When done cooking, drain the noodles in a colander and rinse them with cold water if desired before adding your favorite sauce or topping.
Pairing: Fettuccine is especially delicious when paired with creamy sauces such as Alfredo or clam sauce; both pairings offer an indulgent flavor experience!
For an even more flavorful dish, try adding some sautéed vegetables like mushrooms or spinach to your finished dish for added texture and nutrition.
Rigatoni is a type of pasta that is tubular in shape and has ridges along the outside.
It is slightly larger than penne, but smaller than ziti.
The ridges help to hold sauces and other ingredients, making it an ideal choice for dishes like baked pastas or those with creamy sauces.
Rigatoni can be cooked in a variety of ways, including boiling, baking, or sautéing.
When boiling rigatoni, make sure to use plenty of water (at least 4 quarts per pound) and salt it generously; this will help the pasta cook evenly and absorb flavor from the sauce.
Boil for 8-10 minutes until al dente—it should still have some bite to it when you take a bite!
When making clam sauce with rigatoni, start by sautéing garlic in olive oil until fragrant before adding white wine and clams.
Simmer until the clams are cooked through before adding cream or butter if desired.
Serve over freshly cooked rigatoni for a delicious meal!
Orzo is a type of pasta that is shaped like a large grain of rice.
It’s made from durum wheat semolina and can be used in soups, salads, or as a side dish.
The texture of cooked orzo is slightly chewy with a nutty flavor.
- To cook orzo perfectly every time, bring 4 quarts (3.8 liters) of salted water to a boil in a large pot over high heat.
- Add 1 pound (450 grams) of orzo and stir gently for the first few minutes to prevent sticking together.
- Cook for 8-10 minutes until al dente—it should still have some bite to it when you taste it—and then drain the pasta in a colander before serving.
Orzo pairs well with creamy sauces such as clam sauce because its shape helps hold onto the sauce better than other types of pasta would.
To make this dish, start by sautéing garlic and shallots in olive oil until fragrant; add white wine and reduce until almost evaporated; add canned clams along with their juice; simmer for 5 minutes; stir in cream and seasonings; toss cooked orzo into the pan and mix everything together until evenly coated; serve hot!
Farfalle is a type of pasta that is shaped like bow ties or butterflies.
It is also known as “bow-tie” or “butterfly” pasta, and it comes in both large and small sizes.
The name farfalle comes from the Italian word for butterfly, which makes sense given its shape.
Farfalle pairs well with creamy sauces such as clam sauce because the ridges on the pasta help to hold onto the sauce better than other types of pasta.
- To make sure your farfalle turns out perfectly every time, bring a pot of salted water to a boil before adding your farfalle.
- Cook for 8-10 minutes until al dente (tender but still firm).
- Drain and serve with your favorite sauce!
Definition: Cavatappi is a type of pasta that has a corkscrew shape.
It’s also known as cellentani, amori, or spirali and is made from durum wheat semolina flour.
The name comes from the Italian word for “corkscrew,” which describes its unique shape perfectly.
Cavatappi is great for dishes with chunky sauces because it holds onto them well due to its ridges and curves.
Clam sauce is one such dish that pairs particularly well with cavatappi; the combination of the creamy sauce and chewy pasta creates an irresistible texture contrast.
- To cook cavatappi perfectly every time, bring a pot of salted water to a boil over high heat before adding the pasta.
- Cook until al dente (about 8-10 minutes) then drain in a colander and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.
- Serve your clam sauce over cooked cavatappi and enjoy!
In conclusion, pasta and clam sauce is a classic combination that is sure to please any palate.
By selecting the right type of pasta, you can get the perfect texture and flavor that will make your dish even more enjoyable.
The best kinds of pasta for clam sauce are spaghetti, linguine, fettuccine, rigatoni, orzo, farfalle, and cavatappi. All of these types of pasta have the right shape and texture to provide the best experience when combined with clam sauce.
So, the next time you’re looking to make a delicious clam sauce pasta dish, reach for one of these varieties of pasta and you’ll be sure to make an unforgettable meal.
The 7 Best Kinds of Pasta for Clam Sauce
- Pick your favorite type of pasta from this list to pair with your clam sauce.
- Prepare the rest of your meal, and enjoy!
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.