Pasta in Tuscany will blow you away with an explosion of flavor. These delectable and famous dishes you’ll have to try to believe.
From tortelli maremmani to gnudi, there’s more to pasta than just one type. Many will fly to this region to not miss out on these delicious dishes that’ll melt in your mouth. While you might have heard about some of these Tuscan pasta dishes, others might be new and exciting. Italy prides itself on offering a variety of pasta dishes right in Tuscany.
If you’re ready to try pasta in Tuscany, then read on to explore some of the best pasta you don’t want to miss.
Does Tuscany Have Good Pasta?
If you’re wondering if pasta in this region is worth it, then the answer is yes. From Pici in Siena to Pannicelli from Val di Chiana, it doesn’t disappoint.
It’s important to note that each region of Italy will offer various dishes, including pasta, that’ll vary. Some regions that are most known for their pasta dishes include Emilia-Romagna and Campania.
While you won’t find a large number of pasta dishes, the varieties that Tuscany has are delicious and popular. Tuscany is also known for its hearty bean soups and inexpensive meat cuts.
You’ll find plenty of restaurants in the region that offer a variety of dishes. If you visit a local Italian’s home, many will make each pasta from scratch and serve it to their families. Many will go to local markets for delicious ingredients for their homemade sauces.
Another possibility is to participate in cooking classes to learn the secrets of Tuscan pasta directly from the locals.
Pasta cooking classes in Tuscany
14 Popular Tuscan Varieties and Dishes
For some of the best pasta in Tuscany, add Bringoli to the list. It can be found in the Anghiari region. This hand-rolled pasta is popular in Tuscany; you won’t want to miss the fest of San Martino in November dedicated to it.
It’s thick pasta that’s made with water and wheat flour. There are variations of preparation depending on the family. Since it’s a fresh product, it can’t be kept on food trays for more than one or two days.
2. Bringoli al Sugo Finto
Try this dish for some of the best pasta in Tuscany. Similar to thick spaghetti, this dish is made with hand-rolled pasta. It’s much larger than traditional spaghetti.
If you don’t eat meat, this is the perfect dish for you because it can be made with a mushroom sauce. However, for meat lovers, there’s a classic meat sauce. This traditional peasant dish’s pasta only contains flour and water.
This dish is famous for its “fake” sauce because it has few ingredients. For example, a vegetable sauce can be made instead of meat.
Gnudi is also the best pasta in Tuscany. It comes from the provinces of Siena and Grosseto.
These are soft pieces of parmesan cheese and ricotta. They’re similar in texture to gnocchi, but they are actually naked ravioli.
This dish can be made with little to no flour. Gnudi is often chilled for at least one day before being served. Then if made, it can be served with a traditional marinara dish.
They’re cheese without the pasta covering. Gnudi are usually made with ricotta and spinaches.
They’re usually served with ragout or a sage sauce with burnt butter. To complete the dish, pecorino or parmesan is sprinkled on top.
Some popular Tuscan pasta dishes include Pannicelli. Pannicelli comes from Val di Chiana, in the province of Arezzo.
This large ravioli is filled with grated cheese, spinaches, and ricotta, and topped off with salt and pepper. Panicelli can be browned in the oven with a marinara since it’s not boiled.
Pappardelle can be found all over Tuscany. This ribbon pasta is broad and large flat egg pasta.
They’re often about two-three centimeters wide and might have fluted edges. On the other hand, dried egg pappardelle could have straight edges.
While some are eggless, others do include it. It’s often served with game and meat sauce.
It’s often served with rich and heavy sauces. It derives from the verb pappare, which means to eat in Italian.
You can find them in local markets in Tuscany, and many restaurants have them as well. Pappardelle can be made by hand or with a pasta machine.
While it can be made with different types of flour, durum wheat is more common. Durum wheat helps pasta hold its shape and will stay firm.
If bought dry, you can stir them into boiling water until they fall apart. Durum pasta takes longer, about 13-15 minutes, to cook. To prevent the ribbons from sticking, toss the pasta with oil.
6. Pappardelle al Cinghiale
Pappardelle al Cinghiale is a popular dish all over the region, especially in Southern Tuscany in the provinces of Siena, Grosseto, and Livorno. The pasta is served in a wild boar (cinghiale) sauce.
Pappardelle is one of Tuscany’s most popular egg pasta shapes. While you can find it on various menus today, it was once only found on special occasions. This is because eggs were considered a luxury.
Pici are from Siena and Val d’Orcia. In Montalcino, they call it Pinci, and they are also traditional of Mount Amiata and the neighboring areas of the province of Grosseto. They are thick, hand-rolled pasta, similar to spaghetti.
Pici is a popular pasta since it’s made without costly ingredients. While it resembles spaghetti, it’s much thicker.
This type of pasta is one of the oldest since it dates back to the Etruscans. It’s easy to make since it’s normally just flour and water.
Since Pici are thick, they pair well with a chunky meat sauce. Have Pici at one of the many delicious Tuscan restaurants.
If you’d like to make it homemade, it’s best saved for special occasions. This type of pasta is labor intensive.
While it’s normally made without eggs, some families add eggs to the recipe. For example, some families might make it with spinach instead of water.
It’s popular with duck, hare, wild boar, and other meat sauces. Vegetarians can have sauces with porcini mushrooms, a spicy garlic tomato sauce, or cheese with pepper.
8. Pici all’aglione
Testaroli come from Lunigiana. This pasta in Tuscany is made with salt, flour, and water. It’s sliced into triangular shapes. Many call it a pancake-like pasta. It’s often served with a delicious locally-made pesto.
Testaroli dates back to the Etruscan era. It’s also made without eggs and cut into a triangle or square. Pici is more commonly found on menus than Testaroli.
10. Tortelli Maremmani
Tortelli Maremmani are from the Maremma region. Add these to the list of the best pasta in Tuscany when you’re looking for large ravioli.
Instead of a number of ingredients, it uses mushrooms and herbs. Tortelli Maremmani are often made with local meat dishes in the area. Many of the Italians in the region will make this pasta by hand.
11. Tortelli Maremmani with Ragù
Totelli Maremmani are often made with a delicious ragù sauce. The meat dish incorporates locally-sourced meats from the area.
12. Tortelli Mugellani
This pasta in Tuscany is from Mugello. These are soft square pillows of ravioli made with cheese, mashed potato, garlic, and parsley. It’s been a part of both Tuscan and Roman culture for centuries.
13. Tuscan Potato Ravioli
Pair this delicious Tuscan potato ravioli with a ragù and a side of red wine. Even if this pasta seems simple to make, it takes a large amount of cooking and preparation.
The Tortelli di Patate was created from poverty. It dates back to the 1800s since potatoes were considered a poor ingredient. In the Apennine area, they would use noble ingredients of chestnuts.
Tordelli Lucchese is a stuffed pasta from Lucca. It’s often in the shape of a half-circle and filled with pine nuts, greens, ground meat, and raisins.
It’s important to note this pasta is made with eggs. Once it’s made, it can also be combined with sage, garlic, pancetta, beef, pork, celery, carrots, onions, tomatoes, olive oil, and wine.
Once complete, it’s often topped with parmesan cheese. It’s served warm and can be found at most local restaurants.
Where To Find The Best Pasta In Tuscany?
One popular location is the Vini E Vecchi Sapori. Located in Florence, Italy, you’ll feel like you’re eating at Nonna’s kitchen in Tuscany. The pasta is handmade at this location. One popular dish is the pappardelle with duck.
Another popular restaurant in Florence is the Osteria delle Tre Panche. It’s famous for truffles with its pasta dishes.
If you are in Siena, we recommend “La Taverna di San Giuseppe”, a few steps from Piazza del Campo. In a rustic setting, you can taste pici and other traditional handmade pasta, with a touch of creativity. You will also find there a large selection of wines. The perfect place to taste the best pasta in Tuscany.