12 Simple Pasta Cooking Tips Everyone Should Know

    Tips, tricks, and tweaks that'll take your pasta from good to great.

    Pasta is the ultimate weeknight dinner. It's cheap, easy, and satisfying.

    So we rounded up 12 basic pasta cooking tips to keep in mind the next time you make it — from how to properly salt the water to why you should never rinse it.

    1. Pick the right pasta shape for the sauce you're serving it with.

    2. And don't cook two different shapes of pasta together.

    3. Use a large pot with a generous amount of water.

    4. Learn how to properly salt your pasta water.

    5. And wait to add the salt until after the water is boiling.

    6. Despite what you've been told, don't add oil to your pasta water.

    7. Instead, as soon as you add your pasta to the water, stir it nonstop for two minutes.

    8. Reserve some cooking water to help make your sauces silky smooth and cling to the pasta.

    9. Keep in mind that rinsing your pasta is almost always a bad idea.

    10. Don't let your pasta hang out in the colander after you strain it.

    11. Add your pasta to the sauce, not your sauce to the pasta.

    12. Toss leftover pasta with olive oil to prevent it from sticking together — and learn how to reheat it properly.

    Looking for more helpful cooking tips? Check out these posts:

    27 Delicious Ideas For Weeknight Pasta Dinners

    Here's How To Make Great Pasta From Scratch

    11 Genius Ways To Cook Pasta You've Never Heard Of