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The 5 Best Substitutes for Pasta Water

Pasta is a versatile dish that can be made from various ingredients.

However, one of the most important ingredients in any pasta dish is water.

While we often overlook the importance of water in pasta, it provides a base for flavor and texture.

When cooking pasta, you will want to use plenty of water so that your noodles cook properly.

This means boiling about one gallon of water for every 4-6 ounces of pasta.

While some people choose to drain the extra broth at the end, we suggest saving it.

This starchy water is known as pasta water and can enhance the flavor and texture of your dish.

Pasta water is great, but this starchy liquid can also be used in place of other ingredients.

In this article, we will discuss the five best substitutes for pasta water.

What is Pasta Water?

what is pasta water

It seems like a contradiction in terms, but pasta water is a real thing – and it’s pretty useful.

When you cook pasta, the water absorbs some of the starch from the noodles.

This means that when you drain the pasta, there’s still a lot of flavor-packed starchy water left behind.

And that’s where pasta water comes in.

Pasta water can be used in recipes, from soups and stews to risottos and sauces.

It adds a boost of flavor and helps to thicken and enrich dishes.

Plus, it’s a great way to add some extra nutrition to your meal – all those vitamins and minerals from the pasta will end up in the water, so you’ll be getting a little extra boost every time you use it.

So next time you’re cooking pasta, don’t throw out that starchy water – put it to good use in your kitchen.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Pasta Water

If you love making pasta dishes but don’t have any pasta water on hand, never fear – there are plenty of delicious substitutes that will give your dish the same rich texture and flavor.

Here are five substitutes that could work.

1 – Cornflour


First on our list is cornflour, also known as maize flour.

Cornflour is made by grinding dried corn kernels into a fine powder.

The powder is then sifted to remove any coarse pieces.

The resulting flour is then bleached to achieve the desired color.

Cornflour can be either white or yellow, depending on the type of corn used to make it.

Cornflour is often used as a thickening agent for sauces and soups, and it can also be used to make breading and batters.

It can also be used as a replacement for wheat flour in recipes.

Cornflour is gluten-free and has a higher protein content than wheat flour.

It is also lower in calories and fat.

Cornflour is a great choice if you’re looking for a thick, rich texture and flavor.

2 – Potato Starch

potato starch

Potato starch is a fine, white powder produced by extracting the starch from potatoes.

It is commonly used as a thickening agent in soups and sauces, and it can also be used to make gluten-free flour.

Potato starch is high in carbohydrates and contains a moderate amount of protein.

It is also a good source of fiber.

Potato starch can be used in baking or coating fried foods.

It is also sometimes used as a binding agent in pillows and mattresses.

Potato starch is relatively low in calories and has a neutral taste, making it a versatile ingredient for many different dishes.

3 – Tapioca Starch

tapioca starch

Tapioca starch is a versatile ingredient used in many different applications.

With its thick, glue-like texture and neutral flavor, tapioca starch can be added to baked goods, from cakes and biscuits to bread and granola bars.

It can also be used as a thickener for sauces and soups or a binding agent in meatballs or patties.

Additionally, because tapioca starch contains many essential nutrients like folate, potassium, calcium, and fiber, it can even be eaten on its own as a healthy and filling snack.

Whether you’re looking for the perfect ingredient for your latest baking project or want an easy way to add more nutrients to your diet, tapioca starch is worth checking out.

4 – Cornstarch


Cornstarch is a powder made from the endosperm of the corn kernel.

It is a versatile ingredient used in many different recipes, from thickening sauces to making gluten-free baked goods.

Cornstarch is also a great natural alternative to synthetic ingredients like xanthan gum.

When combined with water, cornstarch forms a gel-like substance that can be used as a binding agent or emulsifier.

It is also an effective thickener for soups, stews, and gravies.

In addition to its culinary uses, cornstarch can also be used as natural laundry starch or cleaning agent.

When combined with vinegar, cornstarch makes an excellent window cleaner.

It can also be used to polish silver and remove stains from clothing.

Whether you’re using it in the kitchen or the laundry room, cornstarch is a versatile ingredient that everyone should have on hand.

5 – Xanthan Gum

xanthan gum

Xanthan gum is a food additive used to thicken and stabilize foods.

It is derived from a type of bacteria, and it is often used in gluten-free products as a replacement for wheat flour.

Xanthan gum has many benefits, including improving the texture of foods, preventing ice crystals from forming, and extending the shelf life of products.

It is also relatively safe to consume, although some people may experience digestive issues when eating large amounts of xanthan gum.

Overall, xanthan gum is a useful food additive that can help to improve the texture and quality of many different types of foods.


Pasta water is a necessary ingredient in many recipes, but it can be replaced with other liquids.

Some good substitutes for pasta water include corn flour, potato starch, and more.

Each of these substitutes has its unique properties, so be sure to choose the one that will work best for your recipe.

With a little experimentation, you should be able to find a suitable replacement for pasta water that works well in your dish.

Yield: 1 Serving

The 5 Best Substitutes for Pasta Water

The 5 Best Substitutes for Pasta Water
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • Cornflour
  • Potato Starch
  • Tapioca Starch
  • Cornstarch
  • Xanthan Gum


  1. Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  2. Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
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