Pasta Numbers Chart: Meaning and Usefulness

Lots of people are unaware of what a pasta numbers chart is or how it relates to pasta. In truth, you’ll have to look closely at your pasta pack to realize it even has a number.

Pasta is a typical food in people’s diets. It’s great for filling you up, in addition to being extremely tasty.

Notwithstanding, many individuals are inclined to stick to the types of pasta that they are most familiar with, not realizing that the pasta they bought has a number that differentiates it from other types of pasta.

So, here is a guide to help you better understand the pasta numbers chart, what it is, why it is needed, and the most popular pasta you will find at your local store.

SEE: Can You Eat Raw Pasta or Not?

What is a pasta numbers chart?

A table or graph known as a pasta number chart contains information about the width, shape, weight, and or sometimes thickness of various types of pasta.

However, the number chart varies according to the pasta brand. That is because pasta is produced by different brands in a variety of cuts, shapes, and sizes. As a result, there isn’t a single pasta number chart.

What do pasta numbers mean?

The numbers on a pasta package in supermarkets are special identification numbers that the manufacturer has given to each pasta shape. If you look closely, you find this number which often represents the shape and thickness.

However, there are no specified numbers or regulatory requirements to separate thickness; this is only done by the pasta brand meaning each brand has its own numbers.

Additionally, there is also the “cut number” number that corresponds to the pasta’s shape or cut. The pasta industry frequently employs the cut number system, which indicates the length, width, shortened, or extruder used to create that specific pasta shape.

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What is a pasta thickness chart?


A graph that explains the width, settings, and thickness of each pasta during production is called a pasta thickness chart.

As a result, pasta manufacturers frequently use this chart, which is often used during production to determine the thickness of the pasta.

SEE: Are Mac And Cheese A Type Of Pasta?

What are the Barilla pasta numbers?

These are numbers that the pasta manufacturer, Barilla, has assigned to each pasta shape to distinguish them.

These numbers are printed more prominently on the front side of the European Barilla pasta package. In contrast, they are displayed on the sides of packages in North America, making them harder to see.

The numbering system for pasta shapes used by Barilla looks like this:

  • Capellini no. 1
  • Spaghettini no. 3
  • Spaghetti no. 5
  • Spaghettoni no. 7
  • Vermicelli no. 8
  • Bucatini no. 9
  • Linguine no. 13
  • Penne rigate no. 73
  • Tortiglioni no. 83
  • Fusilli no. 96

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What are the different sizes of pasta?

Pasta is typically categorized according to:

  • Length (pasta Lunga)
  • Width (pasta Corta)
  • Filling (Ripieno)
  • Cooking method (Pastina)
  • Stretching (Strascinati)
  • Shape (Gnocchi/Gnocchetti)

However, “one man’s Gnocchetto can be someone else’s Strascinato” because of the variety of shapes and sizes and regional variations.

Why is the pasta number chart necessary?

The manufacturer needs the pasta number chat to distinguish between each type of pasta product.

Consequently, without even looking at the pasta, the producer or anyone else can identify the type of pasta using this chart.

Therefore, the past number chart helps in arranging each pasta based on its shape, size, etc.

SEE: What Are The Differences And Similarities Between a Pasta And Bread?

The 6 most common pasta



For many, this pasta is their go-to recipe. It is simple to prepare, pairs well with different sauces, and is just plain messy fun.

Spaghetti is also a long pasta whose fibers are incredibly thin. They come in flat or cylindrical shapes.



This pasta is a staple among young children. Macaroni and cheese is a crowd-pleaser whether made from scratch or prepared from a box.

The hollow of the tube-shaped macaroni pasta fills with whatever it is paired with, making it ideal for cream sauces or anything with melty cheese.

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Penne is another very popular kind of pasta. Like angel hair pasta, penne pasta is made of short tubes with indentations cut along the sides.

The pasta’s ends are cut at an angle, making it perfect for pairing with a ragu or a Bolognese sauce. Also, penne is a dish that can be used in a cream dish and is very adaptable.



Despite popular belief, lasagna refers to the name of the dish’s thin pasta sheets rather than the actual dish.

Nonetheless, the most popular oven-baked dish is called the Lasagna al Forno, which consists of layers of lasagna, béchamel sauce, and cheese on top.

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Pasta ravioli is a unique variety of pasta. To make ravioli, you need one long strip of pasta spread out. At unspecified intervals, add small amounts of meat, mushrooms, or any other fillings.



This is a type of pasta that is long, thin, and flat, with similarities in thickness from spaghetti to fettuccine. The best thing about linguine is its capacity to enhance clam-based sauces as well as other seafood dishes.


What are the sizes of spaghetti?

The 25 to 30 cm (10 to 12 in) lengths are the most popular. This spaghetti length serves as the foundation for many pasta dishes, many of which are accompanied by tomato sauce, meat, or vegetables.

SEE: What Is The Correct Measurement For A Water To Pasta Ration?

Which pasta is the smallest?

The smallest kind of pasta is called Pastina, which means “little pasta” in Italian. Also, it comes in various shapes, including Stelline.

What is short pasta called?

Short pasta is called Penne because of its shape. However, penne is an excellent pasta to pair with rich, creamy, or tomato-based sauces.

Which pasta is the healthiest?

Whole grains pasta is the healthiest type of pasta. This pasta typically contains more iron and B vitamins.

Furthermore, it is typically higher in fiber, manganese, selenium, copper, and phosphorus. Moreover, in comparison to refined pasta, whole-grain pasta has fewer calories, more fiber, and more of a few essential micronutrients.


The only purpose of a pasta number chart is to serve as a guide for distinguishing pasta shapes, cut, size, and thickness.

A pasta number, on the other hand, is used on packaging to distinguish each pasta’s shape or thickness, which is decided by the manufacturer, as there is no accepted standard for pasta numbering.

Likewise, a pasta thickness chart, like the pasta numbers chart, provides full details about each type of pasta and how thick it is.

Thanks for reading.

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