If you have flour, salt, eggs and water in your kitchen, then you’re not far away from a bowl of fresh, piping-hot egg noodles to serve with your favorite sauce. If you’re new to homemade pasta, don’t worry. We’ve broken down how to make egg noodles into a simple, five-step recipe loaded with lots of great tips along the way.
What Are Egg Noodles?
Egg noodles are a type of pasta that contains more eggs than traditional pasta. This higher concentration of egg gives egg noodles a slightly richer flavor and brighter yellow color than other pasta. Despite the higher egg content, egg noodles are essentially equal in terms of calories and nutritional value when compared to traditional pasta.
How to Serve Egg Noodles
Due to their richer taste and texture, egg noodles are best suited for dishes with heavier cream or butter-based sauces. Recipes like beef stroganoff, chicken paprikash and Swedish meatballs are all popular egg noodle dishes. You’ll often see egg noodles in a variety of soups and stews, too.
Tips for Making Homemade Noodles
1. Flour Matters
Not all flour is created equal! All-purpose flour works great for making pasta, but choose a brand that has a higher protein content if possible. King Arthur is our favorite brand of all-purpose flour for making noodles and pasta. Tipo 00 or semolina flour can also be used for making noodles with great results.
2. Salt the Water Like the Sea
Don’t forget to salt the water you’re going to cook the noodles in. Salting the water adds flavor to the noodles as they cook.
3. Don’t Add Oil to the Water
Many recipes suggest adding a tablespoon of olive oil to pasta water. However, adding oil to water will impact how any sauce added after cooking will adhere to your noodles. If you want an even, thick coating of sauce on your noodles, resist adding any oil to the cooking water.
4. Reserve a Little Cooking Water
Stop! Before you drain your pasta, reserve about a cup of the pasta water. Add a little bit of this liquid gold to your pasta sauce before coating your noodles in the sauce. The water contains lots of starchy goodness that will help the sauce adhere to your noodles.
5. Don’t Overcook
This is a no-brainer. Nobody wants mushy noodles. Cook the noodles to al dente. They should be soft when bitten into but with a little chew. Plus, noodles keep cooking even after they’re drained, so they will continue to soften up as they’re tossed with any sauce you may be using.
Essential Tools You’ll Need
Making noodles at home is easy. All you need is a rolling pin, large bowl and a clean surface for shaping the dough. If you love pasta, you may also consider investing in a pasta machine ($47) to help you uniformly roll the dough to the perfect thickness. Alternatively, our Test Kitchen finds this KitchenAid mixer attachment ($145) to be extra useful.
How to Make Egg Noodles
- 2 to 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 tablespoon cold water
Step 1: Mix
In a large bowl or clean surface, combine 2 cups of flour and salt. Make a deep well in a center of the flour and then add the eggs and water to the well. Using your hands or a wooden spoon, mix the ingredients together until a soft dough forms.
Step 2: Knead
Gather the dough and transfer it to a floured surface. Shape into a ball and then knead until smooth, about 10 minutes. If the dough starts to get tacky as you work, dust it with the reserved flour to keep it from sticking, as needed.
Step 3: Roll thin
Next, divide the dough into thirds. Then, on a lightly floured surface, roll each portion of dough into a paper-thin rectangle using a rolling pin. Dust top of the dough with flour to prevent it from sticking to the rolling pin. When the dough reaches the desired thickness, trim the edges of the dough to create an even rectangle.
Editor’s Note: The noodles will puff as they cook, so roll the dough thinner than you want the final noodles to be.
Step 4: Slice
Taking one of the short sides of the rectangle, begin to roll up the dough (like you’re making cinnamon rolls). Then, using a sharp knife, cut 1/4-inch slices. Unroll noodles and allow them to dry flat on paper towels before cooking. Alternatively, you may also use a pizza cutter to cut long, even strips.
Step 5: Cook
To cook, bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a rapid boil. Drop noodles into the water and cook until al dente, about 7-10 minutes. Drain and then serve as part of your favorite noodle recipe.
Tips for Storage
Noodles can be stored uncooked in the freezer for several months. Divide noodles into individual portions and store them in an airtight container. To cook, defrost overnight in the refrigerator and then cook as directed above.