The 10 Must-Have Tools for Making Pasta

The 10 Must-Have Tools for Making Pasta

Making pasta is as much an art as it is a craft. Mix flour, water, and occasionally eggs in a dough, roll it out into pasta sheets of your desired thickness, and cut the sheets into any shape you want. It’s an act of creation that’s grounding, rewarding, and reminiscent of a time when life was simpler (and when food was humbler, more natural, and effortlessly tasty).

Whether you’re just learning how to make pasta or you consider yourself an artisan pasta maker who just happens to make noodles at home, one thing is for sure: you need a few trusty tools to get the job done.

In this post, I’m going to share with you what I believe to be the best tools for making homemade pasta.

There’s a lot of products not worth your money out there, which is why I’m going to help you sift through the fake reviews and misleading names, and point you to products made in the U.S., Canada, and Italy that will always help you get the job done and, in many cases, last you a lifetime.

To make this long post easier for you to navigate, I’ve split my product picks into three parts:

  1. Tools for the seasoned home cook
  2. Tools for making pasta by hand
  3. Tools for drying & serving pasta

The first part contains pricier purchases like stand mixers, pasta machines, and stainless steel pasta pots. All of the pasta-making tools in this part are ideal for the home cook who likes to make fresh pasta often—and who appreciates the convenience of modern technology.

The second part contains more affordable purchases like baking mats, rolling pins, and pastry cutters. They’re best for those of you who prefer to make everything by hand, as well as for those who want to buy all the tools they need but are shopping on a tight budget. If you were to buy all of them at their list price tomorrow, they wouldn’t set you back more than $150.

The third part contains a few select tools for drying and serving pasta noodles. You’ll need these tools no matter if you use machines or make your pasta entirely by hand.


Tools for the Seasoned Home Cook


KitchenAid Professional 600-Series Stand Mixer

Sale
KitchenAid KP26M1XER 6 Qt. Professional 600 Series Bowl-Lift Stand Mixer - Empire Red
  • 10 different attachments
  • 6-quart stainless steel bowl with comfortable handle
  • Bowl-lift design

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A good stand mixer is nothing short of a blessing for the home cook who mixes dough often. And make no doubt about it, the KitchenAid Professional 600-Series costs a pretty penny, but is one of the best (or perhaps the best) stand mixers money can buy.

KitchenAid offers a variety of stand mixers for use in both commercial and home kitchens. This one stands right in the middle, with a sturdy bowl-lift mechanism, a spacious 6-quart stainless steel bowl, and a powerful 575-Watt motor capable of handling any mixing task at home.

If there’s one American manufacturer who knows how to make stand mixers, that’s KitchenAid. 

The company has been making stand mixers since it was founded by The Hobart Manufacturing Company in 1919—and its modern models build on the legacy of the iconic H-5 stand mixer. Today, all stand mixers continue to be assembled in its factory in Greenville, Ohio.

The upside of owning a KitchenAid stand mixer is the extensibility. KitchenAid offers a variety of accessories and attachments to turn your mixer into a meat grinder, cheese shredder, peel, pasta roller, pasta press, and even ice cream maker.

Yes, a stand mixer of this price is an investment. It’s also one completely worth the money. It will not only free you time and save you some elbow grease—but it will also do many tasks noticeably better and faster than you.


Marcato Atlas 150 Pasta Machine

MARCATO Atlas 150 Pasta Machine, Made in Italy, Includes Cutter, Hand Crank, and Instructions, 150 mm, Stainless Steel
  • Marcato’s Original World-Famous Atlas 150 pasta machine rolls and cuts pasta dough for traditional lasagna, fettuccine, and tag at home
  • Made in Italy from chrome-plated steel; Includes pasta machine, pasta cutter, hand crank, clamp, Instructions; 10-year
  • Rolls sheets of dough to 150-millimeters wide at 10 thicknesses (0. 6 to 4. 8-Millimeter) for consistent texture, cook time, and taste.Atlas...

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A pasta machine can help you to roll out pasta dough and to cut it into shape for lasagna, fettuccine, and tagliatelle.

Doing this by hand takes a lot of time and effort, which is what makes this kitchen tool a must-have for anyone who makes (or intends to make) fresh pasta at home often.

If you’re searching for a good pasta machine, don’t waste your money on any other options. The Italian-made Marcato Atlas 150 Pasta Machine has been the go-to choice for generations of home cooks and artisan pasta makers in Italy and the United States.

Made of chrome-plated steel, the Marcato Atlas 150 is a hand crank-operated pasta machine that rolls out pasta sheets to 150-millimeters wide with 10 thickness options (from 0.6 to 4.8-millimeters thick). It’s well-built, functional, versatile, and extensible.

Marcato offers 12 accessories for the Atlas 150 that you can use to make different pasta varieties like bigoli, capellini, lasagnette, linguine, mafaldine, pappardelle, reginette, spaghetti, spaghetti alla chitarra, trenette, vermicelli, and ravioli.

You can also connect your pasta machine to the Atlasmotor, a detachable electric motor that will roll out the pasta dough instead of you. The motor is really useful if you want to free your hands from rotating the crack and holding the pasta machine down—and focus entirely on controlling the thickness and width of your pasta sheets.


All-Clad 8-Quart Multi-Cooker

Sale
All-Clad E9078064 Stainless Steel Multicooker with Perforated Steel Insert and Steamer Basket, 8-Quart, Silver
  • Features taller sides that reduce evaporation for boiling, simmering, slow cooking, and more
  • Made from stainless steel for solid durability and even heat distribution
  • Secured with riveted stainless steel handles and to prevent dropping or spilling

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A pasta pot with a pasta insert makes straining pasta noodles easier than ever before. Just pull the pasta insert out, let the water drain, and mix your noodles with the sauce before serving.

The All-Clad 8-Quart Multi-Cooker is the last pot you’ll ever need, which is why it ended up on this list. Use it as you would and care for it well—and it will last you a lifetime.

This single-ply, stainless steel, oven- and broiler-safe, induction-compatible, and dishwasher-safe pot can be heated to temperatures as high as 600°F (315°C). It’s made of highly-polished 18/10 stainless steel and has a thick, warp-resistant base of thick aluminum for quick and even heating.

It also comes with a perforated pasta insert for easy draining of your pasta noodles. And a steamer basket for when you want to make perfectly-steamed, mouthwateringly-delicious, and heart-healthy veggies on the side.

Since 1971, All-Clad has been making 100% of its cookware in its factory in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. There’s a reason why professional chefs equip their restaurants—and their home kitchens—with All-Clad cookware. This U.S. cookware maker knows how to make pots that heat up quickly and evenly, give you superior cooking control, and last for generations.


Tools for Making Pasta By Hand


Cook Time 26×16-Inch Silicone Pastry Baking Mat

Silicone Pastry Baking Mat Non Stick-Large Rolling Dough with Measurements-Non Slip Pizza,Fondant,Pie,Cake Baking Mat - 26 x 16 Inch By Cook Time
  • ❤【CLEAN UP IS A BREEZE】:Baking and rolling are amusing games until leftover dough slides off the pastry mat so that the crumbs go to...
  • ❤【THE PERFECT SIZE FOR ALL YOUR BAKING NEEDS】: The silicon baking mat provides an extra large, nonslip surface for preparing all kinds...
  • ❤【MULTIPURPOSE】: Our large fondant mat is equipped with weight, temperature, and measurements, which makes it versatile.Our foolproof...

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To mix, knead, and roll out pasta dough by hand, you need a clean and non-stick surface. You could work directly on your countertop or table, but you’re likely to make a mess and you might damage an otherwise good piece of kitchen furniture.

Or you could just get a silicone baking mat. A good one will cost you less than twenty bucks and will come in handy every single time you make pasta dough at home (or dough for any other baked good like bread, pizza, and cookies, for that matter).

Cook Time’s 26×16-Inch Silicone Pastry Baking Mat is one of your best options out there. It provides you with an extra-large, non-stick working surface to make as big of a mess as you like without worrying about water spilling out on your table or flour getting in any areas where it will be very hard to clean.

This baking mat is made of food-grade silicone and fiberglass mesh, a similar set of materials that they coat slick paper and ceramic pans with to give them a non-stick surface. At the same time, it offers good enough friction on the back, so that it clings onto your countertop or table and won’t slip when you roll out dough.

Try this baking mat, and you’ll never make dough on a non-covered surface again. Seriously, the amount of cleaning up that baking mats save you is ridiculous. So much that, much like I did when I discovered them, you’ll end up asking yourself how come you never come across them earlier.


Pro Dough Stainless Steel Pastry Scraper

Sale
Pro Dough Pastry Scraper/Cutter/Chopper Stainless Steel Mirror Polished with Measuring Scale Multipurpose- Cake, Pizza Cutter - Pastry Bread Separator Scale Knife (1)
  • 【Simple and Modern style】 Pizz cutter/Dough scraper/Dough Cutter designed to scrape and split bread dough,So it's easy to...
  • 【No rust and dishwasher safe】Made of heavy duty Stainless Steel,Nontoxic&Dish washer safe!
  • 【Quick Various Measurement,Help to make equal portions】you need to cut the dough or pizza, making your baking more...

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Regular readers of this blog will tell you that I like my kitchenware simple, functional, and well-built. The Pro Dough Stainless Steel Pastry Scraper is a sturdy, easy to hold, and easy to clean pastry scraper that comes with everything you need in a kitchen tool for this purpose, and nothing you don’t.

Thanks to the scales (in inches and centimeters) printed on the side, this pastry scraper also doubles down as a pastry cutter and chopper. It has a thickness of 0.8mm and dimensions of 5.75×4.74×1 inches (15×12.2×2.3 centimeters).

It’s made of high-quality stainless steel and is dishwasher-safe. The grip is hollow, which makes it really easy to clean—even if fresh dough ends up sticking and drying somewhere inside the handle.

Also, it comes at a reasonable price knowing that it’s made of stainless steel. The last time I checked when I published this post, the list price was $9.99 (and it sold at a discount for $6.99 with free shipping included).


Ateco Dowel Maple Rolling Pin

Ateco 19176 Maple Wood Rolling Pin, 19-Inch, Solid Maple Wood, Made in Canada
  • Ateco's Dowel Rolling Pin is ideal for rolling out a variety of doughs such as cookie, pie, and puff pastry
  • The no-handle design makes this rolling pin easier to maneuver and control pressure when working with delicate doughs
  • Made in Canada of solid maple wood; one-piece construction; measures 19 inches long; 1.75 inch diameter

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Not much can be said about rolling pins, right?

Only if you’re lucky enough to buy the right one from the first time, I guess… It can be really, really hard to find a good rolling pin for pasta sheets!

French-style rolling pins, also known as tapered rolling pins, are a good choice for most doughs, but they give you a little more precision than you need for rolling out fresh pasta sheets. When making pasta dough, you want uniformity. This is best done with a straight rolling pin.

“Innovative” rolling pins with fancy handles or colorful attachments have all sorts of bells and whistles that sound great until you actually try them and come to the conclusion that they prevent you from rolling out a good dough (instead of helping you to do it).

Behold, the Ateco Dowel Maple Rolling Pin. This no-handle rolling pin is made in Canada of a single piece of maple wood. It’s 19 inches long with a diameter of 1.35 inches and has the weight you’re looking for (1.2 pounds) when you’re rolling out stuffy pasta doughs.

This rolling pin has a smooth surface and, other than an initial clean by hand in soapy water, it won’t require any additional work from your side before you can roll it dough with it.

It’s also made by a family-run Canadian company that’s been making baking tools from local maple for more than 100 years.

If you want this wooden rolling pin to last for a really long time, you’ll need to finish it every now and then. It’s a good idea to keep some wood finish in your pantry and to apply it on your rolling pin once every 2-3 months.

Odie's Oil - Universal - 9oz Jar
  • If you’re looking for a wood finish that not only looks fantastic but is easy to apply, look no further than Odie’s Oil. Our finish not...
  • Odie’s Oil is very easy to use. Simply wipe Odie’s Oil on to your project, wait a while, then buff it off. Unlike conventional wood...
  • Odies Oil works with all species of wood, exotic or domestic, hard or soft. It has also been specially formulated to work on the oiliest of...

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My favorite wood finish is Odie’s Oil. Wipe it on, wait for 4-5 minutes, then buff it off with a soft cloth. Odie’s Oil is food-safe and contains nothing toxic, which makes it perfect for finishing wooden kitchenware.


Ateco Fluted 5.75-Inch Pastry Cutting Wheel

Ateco Fluted Pastry Wheel, 5.75 Inch, Silver
  • Fluted pastry wheel by Ateco
  • Blade made of stainless steel
  • Lovely natural wood handle

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Those of you who make their own dough and roll it out by hand will also need something to cut the pasta sheets with. This something is called a pasta cutter wheel—and this fluted 5.75-inch pastry wheel by Ateco is just the right tool for the purpose.

It comes with a 1 ⅜-inch stainless steel blade and a comfortable wooden handle. It won’t cut your pasta sheets as precisely as a pasta machine or a stand mixer attachment, but, most of the time, it will do the job well enough. When it comes to homemade pasta, imperfect is perfect.


Marcato Ravioli Maker Mold

Marcato Ravioli Maker Mould, Made in Italy, Makes 1-Dozen 2-Inch Rounds, Matte
  • Marcato Ravioli Mould easily forms, seals, and cuts authentic 2-inch round homemade ravioli with fluted edges, 12 at a time
  • Made from aluminum with wooden rolling pin; compact for easy storage
  • Quickly make 2-inch round raviolis with classic fluted edges; uniform-sized pasta cooks evenly for better-tasting results

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You can make ravioli by hand and without any accessories. But getting the size right can be tricky—which makes getting the cooking time right even harder.

This form that very much resembles an ice cube tray you’d put in the freezer can help you make restaurant-grade ravioli. It’s made in Italy by Marcato, one of the best pasta accessory makers in the world.

The mold’s body is made of aluminum and it comes with a small rolling pin for pressing down on the dough. It produces a dozen of 2-inch ravioli with classic fluted edges.


Eppicotispai Garganelli and Gnocchi Stripper

Eppicotispai Garganelli and Gnocchi Stripper
  • Unique tool for Garganelli
  • Traditional Gnocchi board
  • Natural beechwood

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Yes, garganelli, an egg-based pasta variety, and gnocchi, dough dumplings made of flour, egg, breadcrumbs, potato, and cheese, are best made using a special tool called a pasta stripper.

Despite the pictures that came to my mind when I first heard about this tool years ago, a pasta stripper is a wooden board with pointed edges and a rough rolling pin that helps you make garganelli and gnocchi.

You use it by taking a sheet of rolled dough, rolling it from one corner to the other using the rolling pin, and giving it two pointed edges by hand. This board is made of beechwood in Italy and has dimensions of 8.19×3.54×0.79 inches.


Tools for Drying & Serving Pasta


Norpro Pasta Drying Rack

Sale
Norpro Pasta Drying Rack Wood, 2.6
  • If you love making homemade pasta as much as we do, this is a definite must have! Our traditional wooden drying rack is perfect for drying...
  • The wooden rack stands 16 ½ inches tall, including a heavy, stable 7/8 inch thick base. Then equipped with 4 – 18 inch dowels that slide...
  • Made of environmentally friendly Rubberwood, the unfinished wood is perfect for keeping the pasta strands from sliding off.

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Fresh pasta noodles should be air-dried for 30 minutes if you plan to eat them the same day, and for 12-24 hours (depending on the temperature and humidity of your home kitchen) if you’d like to refrigerate or freeze them for long-term storage.

A pasta drying rack is a pasta-making tool that you hang your fresh pasta noodles on, letting them air-dry for as long as necessary before they’re fit for cooking. As with many other tools out there, a good drying rack can be surprisingly hard to find.

I’m recommending this one because it’s made of Rubberwood, which is a better material than steel or plastic for the purpose. The wood is unfinished to keep the noodles from sliding off of the dowels.

Because it’s big enough for air-drying the typical batch of homemade pasta—no matter if you’re using a stand mixer and a pasta machine or making, rolling out, and cutting the dough by hand.

The Norpro Pasta Drying Rack stands 16 ½ inches tall and has a stable 7/8-inch thick wooden base. It comes with four 18-inch dowels that slide through the holes in the post. It’s easy to assemble whenever you needed it (and just as easy to take apart and store somewhere out of sight whenever you don’t).


AxeSickle Spaghetti Measuring Tool

AxeSickle Stainless Steel Spaghetti Measurer Tool Pasta Portion Control Gadgets with 4 Serving Portion Cooking Tool
  • The stainless steel measure has four different measuring holes to identify the correct amount of spaghetti for 1-4 servings.
  • 7-1/4", 1 portion 2 oz, 2 portions 4 oz, 3 portions 6 oz, 4 portions 8 oz, Just slide pasta into one of 4 holes to gauge correct portion...
  • Stainless steel construction, Simple Storage, Durable & Dishwasher Safe, A must-have, Easy to use measuring tool, Kitchen Gadgets,perfectly...

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A spaghetti measuring tool helps you identify the right amount of pasta to use for 1, 2, 3, and 4 spaghetti servings. If you like to make spaghetti at home but find it hard to measure the right amount of noodles, this small accessory will make that easier for you to determine.


Conclusion

You now know my top picks for the best pasta-making tools you can buy on the Internet. As always, I encourage you to do your own due diligence and research each of my picks on your own. What works for me and my kitchen may not necessarily be the best choice for you.

Which ones did you end up buying—and how did they work out for you? Do you have any favorites of your own you’d like to share with me and the rest of this post’s readers? Join the discussion by leaving a comment below.

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