Think Twice Before Adding Oil to Cooked Pasta

March 13, 2013 | By | Comments (5)

Spaghetti with Meatballs

I’m completely guilty of this cooking mistake. If my pasta is done before the rest of my dinner, I instinctively reach for the olive oil. But now it’s time to retrain myself. Why? Because adding oil to freshly cooked pasta means that any sauce you put on afterward just won’t stick. Period.

Instead add a little bit of sauce to the pasta to keep it from sticking, or rinse the noodles in cold water to remove the starch that makes them stick in the first place.

I’ll be using this tip when I make dinner tonight. How about you? Get some of our favorite pasta recipes here. (And that recipe above is our Spaghetti with Bacon Meatballs, yum.)


  1. Erica

    the best option I’ve seen is to reserve some pasta water before draining it. add a about 1/4 cup back in after you drain and you won’t get any sticky pasta :)

    March 22, 2013 at 2:32 pm
  2. Cindy

    I disagree that this is a problem! Ask Mario Battaglia…he says Italians dose their food with a tad routinely. And I don’t care if it sticks to the pasta. If it’s all in the bowl, I’m good. Just a personal observation. Love your site!

    March 22, 2013 at 2:33 pm
  3. Amy C

    I mix a little sauce in to keep it from sticking; if it’s going to be a while, I rinse it in water.

    March 22, 2013 at 2:44 pm
  4. Barbara Medeiros

    I’ve always added a bit of oil to the pot while cooking and then added some sauce after draining the water. I find it a touch off-putting to see pale, bleached-looking pasta on a plate.

    March 22, 2013 at 3:40 pm
  5. paralaxvu

    But if you rinse the pasta with cold water, it gets cold even faster than it does just lying there!

    March 22, 2013 at 4:53 pm

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