How to make homemade pasta (egg pasta) with just two ingredients and a simple process- no pasta machine required. This pasta dough recipe can then be used to make homemade pasta noodles, sheets, and shapes! I'll also take you through how to store fresh pasta, dry it, and cook it!
Course Appetizer, DIYs, Main
Freezer friendly 1-2 Months, 6 Months (dried)
Shelf life 1 Month (dried), 1-2 Days (once prepared)
Place the flour on a clean working surface, create a well in the middle, and then add the eggs to the well.
Start by beating the eggs with a fork or spoon in the center, and then slowly start to incorporate the flour into the egg mixture until you have a very rough ('scraggly' as I call it) dough. Read the FAQs for doing this process with a stand mixer/food processor.
Once you have a rough dough, knead it with your hands, making sure to stretch and pull the dough until it becomes smooth and elastic. This process will take a while, so be patient- it usually takes me around 10 minutes.While kneading the dough, it may initially feel like you need more water or flour but don't add in anything yet – just keep working with it. If it continues to stick to your hand even when smoother-looking, you may need an extra spoonful of flour. If it's still a bit crumbly, then add a spoonful of water.
Step 2: Rest the dough
Allow the dough to rest for 15 minutes, wrapped tightly with plastic wrap. Once rested, it should be soft and tender, and easy to work with.
Meanwhile, as it rests, you can prepare your tools for shaping the homemade pasta dough, including:Extra flour to dust the surface, or use semolina (semola flour)EITHER a rolling pin or pasta machine (if you have one)Knife or bench scraper to cut the dough.Kitchen towel to cover the rolled egg pasta sheets so they don't dry.
Step 3: Roll and shape the pasta dough.
Once it's rested, divide the dough into 4-6 pieces (these will be easier to work with).
To shape the pasta, you'll then be using one of three methods: using a rolling pin, a pasta machine, or a pasta extruder.
Using a pasta extruder:
If you use a pasta extruder, then simply feed the dough into the extruder, press it through, and toss with a little extra flour/ semolina to make sure they don't stick.The shapes you can make will depend on what disks you have for your extruder but will often contain several diameters of round noodles and flat noodles (like the flat ribbon noodles used for Pad Thai) and certain tube-shaped pasta too.
Using a Rolling Pin:
Use the rolling pin to roll out the dough as thin as it will go. In most cases, we want the egg pasta to be between 2-3mm.
Hand-rolled pasta (and pasta sheets) are great for when you want to make pasta including:Lasagna sheets, Pappardelle, Tagliatelle, fettuccine, Ravioli, Tortellini, Farfalle, Orecchiette, cavatelli, etc.
For wide homemade pasta noodles (aka ribbon, pappardelle, etc.):Once you've rolled out your sheet, cut it to the length you want your noodles to be, trimming off the ends for a rectangular piece (those discarded pieces can be re-rolled).Roll the pasta up, loosely, from the shorter end of the rectangle, then use a sharp knife to cut along the rolled-up sheet to the width of the noodles you want. Unroll the pasta, and those are your noodles.
For Lasagna Sheets:Once you've rolled out the dough, then use your measured bench scraper or a ruler to help measure and cut the lasagna sheets to size. Making them homemade means you can fit them perfectly into any baking dish you own!Use a sharp knife or pizza cutter to cut out the sheets. Feel free to hold the ruler in place over the pasta to cut straight lines.Chef's note: You can also make laminated pasta (where you layer two sheets of pasta with herbs or ingredients between)
Using a pasta machine:
Once you've divided the dough, flour one piece (liberally) and roughly flatten it by hand, thick enough to fir the first setting of your pasta machine (usually '0').
Feed the pasta through the machine and then fold it like a letter (to fit inside an envelope- one side over the other) and repeat 3 more times.
Then pass the dough through each setting, slowly making it thinner until you reach your desired thickness.If the dough starts to feel tacky at any point, then sprinkle a little more flour over it.
You can then hand cut lasagna and any of the pasta varieties mentioned above. Alternatively, most pasta machines will also come with separate attachments for spaghetti and slightly wider (Fettucine) noodles.
How to cook fresh pasta
If you're wondering how long to cook egg noodles, it will depend on whether they are fresh, frozen, or dried. To cook fresh egg noodles:Bring a pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat, then add in the egg pasta and stir it immediately. This will help it to avoid sticking together.Fresh pasta will cook faster than dried, so keep an eye on it. The exact time will depend on how thick it is and what type of pasta you've made (i.e., ravioli vs. noodles). However, it's usually ready in less than 3 minutes!!Strain the pasta – the leftover salted pasta water can be frozen to add to stocks, soups, and sauces.Note that if you freeze or dry the pasta, then the cooking time will increase. Add an extra 1-2 minutes for frozen egg pasta and an extra 2-4 minutes for dried egg pasta.
The color of the pasta: Will vary based on the flour and eggs used. I use eggs with deep yolks, which makes richer colored pasta. Semola flour is also more yellow in color so will affect the color of the pasta.
Be liberal with flouring: Dust the pasta machine rollers and all the pasta dough and cut pasta liberally with flour to make sure nothing sticks.
Make sure to use large eggs: If you use smaller eggs, then the amount of flour needed will also change.
Feel free to season the dough: It’s not necessary as most of us season the cooking water and the sauce, etc. However, you could also season the dough for extra flavor. Just note that salt will actually impact the texture of the dough, too.
Humidity, flour, and eggs can all impact the dough: Depending on where you live you may find that you need slightly less flour or you may need to add a little additional liquid in the form of water (1 teaspoon at a time) to get the dough to the correct consistency. It may take a little practice, but you’ll soon come to ‘feel’ when your dough needs more flour/liquid.
Read the blog post for answers to tons more FAQS, how to store and dry the fresh pasta, and ingredient notes!