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Explore Italy's Pasta Paradise: A Regional Guide & Pasta Map

Pasta map of ItalyPasta map of Italy

Ah, Italia! The land where pasta isn't just food—it's a way of life. Join me on a pasta journey through Italy's diverse regions, as I map out just where each twist, twirl, and shape of pasta comes from.

The types of pasta in Italy

Northern Italy

Liguria - Trofie: These short, twisted pasta spirals are like little works of art, perfectly paired with Liguria's famous basil-rich pesto sauce. Close your eyes, take a bite, and you're transported to the sunny Italian Riviera.

Liguria - Penne: Invented in Genoa, this tubular pasta is now found across the map of Italy and across the world too. It's Italy's versatile canvas for culinary creativity.

Lombardy - Pizzoccheri: Buckwheat pasta from the alpine Valtellina region, where potatoes, greens, and a sprinkle of mountain cheese dance together in a hearty embrace. It's rustic, it's comforting—it's a taste of northern Italy's alpine soul.

Veneto - Bigoli: Thick and satisfying, these whole wheat pasta strands are a Venetian favorite, dressed in rich duck or sardine sauce. Perfect for a chilly evening by the canals. These are some restaurants I can recommend in Venice if you'd like to try bigoli while you are visiting Venice.

Piedmont - Agnolotti: Elegant pasta pockets, filled with the flavors of Piedmontese hills—meat, vegetables, and a hint of love. Delicate, yet hearty enough to satisfy the hungriest traveler. In the wonderful city of Turin you'll find agnolotti on the menu at all of the city's traditional restaurants.

Central Italy


Tuscany - Pici: Hand-rolled pasta, in simple sauces of garlic, olive oil, and juicy tomatoes. This is the taste of la dolce vita, under the Tuscan sun.

Emilia-Romagna - Tagliatelle: Long, flat ribbons of pasta that cradle Bologna's rich, meaty Bolognese sauce - here's the authentic recipe. A perfect combination of slow-cooked tomatoes, simmered meats, and generations of pasta perfection.

Tuscany - Pappardelle: Wide, flat pasta that marries beautifully with Tuscany's wild boar ragu, a dish that speaks of ancient forests and rolling hills. 

Lazio - Bucatini: Spaghetti's thicker cousin, with a hollow center that combines perfectly with Lazio's bold Amatriciana sauce—tomatoes, pecorino cheese, and a hint of fiery chili. Rome's passionate soul is reflected in this dish.

Southern Italy

Ladies making pasta in Bari Italy old townMamma makes pasta in Bari

Apulia - Orecchiette: "Little ears" that capture Apulia's sunny essence, tossed with bitter broccoli rabe or turnip greens. Simple, yet bursting with the flavors of southern Italy's fertile land. In Bari, I loved how the local grandmother's make these in the street - here's the story.

Apulia/Molise - Cavatelli: Small, shell-like pasta cradling Apulia and Molise's love for ricotta and tomato-based sauces. It's a taste of southern comfort, under Italy's warm Mediterranean sun.

Campania - Paccheri: Big tubes of pasta that hug Campania's rich, chunky sauces, filled with local tomatoes and tender chunks of meat. All of Naples' bold flavors and lively spirit in every bite.

Campania - Fusilli: Spirals of pasta that spin tales of Campania's sun-drenched fields, tossed with fresh tomatoes and savory meats. 

Calabria - Fileja: Hand-rolled pasta twisted around a reed, served with hearty Calabrian sauces like 'nduja or ragu. This is my favorite fileja recipe.


Sicily - Busiati: Twisted pasta strands that are just the thing with Sicily's pesto Trapanese—tomatoes, almonds, and basil. You've got Sicilian sunshine and the island's ancient culinary traditions served to you on a plate.

Sicily - Spaghetti: Italy's golden threads, loved from Milan to Palermo, draped in everything from carbonara to spicy arrabbiata. It's the pasta that unites Italy's diverse flavors and it is the Italian pasta that you will find pretty much anywhere on earth.

Sardinia - Culurgiones: Stuffed pasta pockets filled with potatoes, pecorino cheese, and mint—Sardinia's hearty embrace on a plate. 

Sardinia - Malloreddus: Ridged pasta bites that embrace Sardinia's wild heart, cradling a hearty sausage ragu. A taste of the island's rugged beauty and robust flavors.

General Types Found Nationwide


Farfalle: Butterfly-shaped pasta that is ideal for delicate sauces.

Lasagna: Layered pasta sheets that hold Italy's heart in every bite. It's the dish that speaks of family gatherings, laughter, and the warmth of home. Here's the real authentic recipe, just the way I make it at home.

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