Difference Between Macaroni and Pasta


Main Difference

The main difference between macaroni and pasta is that macaroni is a type of pasta in the form of hollow tubes and pasta is made up of a dough of flour, which is used to give different shapes.

Macaroni vs. Pasta

Macaroni is parched pasta while the pasta produces from a dough of durum wheat flour mixed with water. Macaroni is processed without eggs; on the other hand, eggs are an ingredient in pasta. Macaroni is made of wheat flour while pasta can make with wheat, rice, legumes, and lentils. Macaroni is C-shaped while pasta comes in different size and varieties. Macaroni is more popular than pasta throughout the world. Macaroni can store for a long period, whereas pasta is perishable, storage time is less. Macaroni has a complicated shape only produced on a commercial scale; on the other hand, pasta can make with machines as well as hand. Macaroni is dehydrated pasta while pasta has two forms dry and fresh. Macaroni reserves 371 calories, whereas pasta supplies 131 calories per 100g of the same amount. All macaroni is pasta while all pasta is not macaroni.


Comparison Chart

Macaroni is a type of pasta made with a dough of wheat and water.Pasta is made with an unleavened dough of flour, water, and sometimes eggs.
C-shaped narrow tubesVaries in shape
Shelf Life
More prevalentLess prevalent
Includes eggsDo not include eggs
Produced by machinesHandmade or by machines
371 calories/100g131 calories/ 100g

What is Macaroni?

Macaroni is an Italian word. It finds its origin in Italy. The word “macaroni” comes from ancient Greek. Macaroni is a dehydrated form of pasta made with a dough of wheat flour mixed with water. Macaroni is a pasta dish in narrow tube shape of 3-5 inches. Although its beginning is in Italy, it is famous all over the world. Macaroni is the favorite food of kids and children of every age. Macaroni is cut in small size and given a specific C-shape. It is difficult to shape macaroni; therefore, machines make macaroni. The most common form of macaroni is elbow macaroni that has a curve in its shape. Macaroni and cheese, from elbow macaroni, served as a common dish around the world.


The ingredients used in macaroni production are wheat flour and water. Its synthesis does not include eggs. Macaroni is dehydrated pasta hence has less moisture content. It is nonperishable (the substance which does not spoil promptly). Its storage can be for a long period. One hundred grams of macaroni serves 371 calories of energy. It contains a variety of nutrients, i.e., carbohydrates, Fat, Protein, Sodium, Calcium, Magnesium, Iron, and Vitamin B-6. Macaroni supports good health. Whole wheat macaroni provides enough fiber. Fiber relieves constipation, lower cholesterol levels, and reduce the probability of heart diseases. Iron is a key ingredient for the immune system and growth. Hence, macaroni is a good choice for eating.

What is Pasta?

The word “pasta” is taken from Italian and Greek language. Like macaroni, it also finds its origin in Italy. The pasta was processed firstly in the 15th century. Pasta is the principal food in many dishes. It is commonly prepared from a dough of wheat flour with water or eggs and given varied shapes. Besides wheat flour, rice flour, legumes, and lentils increase its flavor and texture. This type of pasta served as a gluten-free diet. Pasta has two types, fresh and dry pasta. Pasta is perishable (the substance which spoils readily) therefore its shelf life is short. Because of this reason, people eat fresh pasta. Dried pasta is also called industry made pasta. It requires large machines with fast processing capabilities for production.

Pasta is less popular among people because people make it in specific areas of its origin. One hundred grams of pasta supplies 131 calories of energy, it contains various ingredients; fat, protein, carbohydrate, cholesterol, sodium, potassium, cobalamin, and magnesium which offers healthy effects on body According to recent researches, pasta consumption does not lead to obesity. It contains specific ingredients, i.e., carbohydrates supply glucose, which is necessary for brain functioning. It is low in sodium and cholesterol levels; hence, chances of cardiovascular diseases are less. Folic acid is necessary for proper growth of children. Pasta, along with vegetables and protein diet, forms a balanced diet.

Key Differences

  1. Macaroni is dry pasta while the pasta is made of dough of water, flour and rarely eggs.
  2. Macaroni is C-shaped on the other hand; pasta has different shapes according to type.
  3. Macaroni is nonperishable on the flip side; pasta is perishable.
  4. Macaroni’s ingredients do not include eggs conversely pasta includes eggs in its production.
  5. Macaroni is produced commercially by machines, whereas the pasta can be hand made.
  6. Macaroni serves 371 calories, but pasta serves 131 calories per 100g.


Macaroni is dry pasta but does not include eggs in its processing and pasta is processed with durum wheat flour, water and sometimes eggs.

Aimie Carlson

Aimie Carlson is an English language enthusiast who loves writing and has a master degree in English literature. Follow her on Twitter at @AimieCarlson