pasta noodles and tomatoes - not yet cooked. Fixing undercooked pasta guide

How to Fix Undercooked Pasta

If your pasta is undercooked, there are a few ways you can fix it. Knowing how to fix undercooked pasta is something anyone can learn. You don’t have to throw the entire dish out; there are solutions!

We’ve all been there, trying to make an easy meal after a long day. What should have been an easy meal is now turning into a project. All because you drained the pasta too soon. 

Well, it is fixable, and our tips will help you out. You can quickly remedy an undercooked pasta without tossing the entire meal.

Knowing how to fix undercooked pasta all depends on what pasta meal you were preparing. Undercooked pasta is not the same thing as al dente pasta. When making a pasta that is al dente, it is firm and chewy with some texture. On the other hand, undercooked pasta is still crunchy.

Whether you are a member of the pasta of the month club or just love pasta our tips will help you create the perfect pasta dish.

How to Fix Undercooked Pasta

Pro Tip #1 Re-Cook the Undercooked Pasta (how to fix undercooked pasta)

Three reasons why you should reboil the pasta are listed here. How to fix undercooked pasta, is a query with a few options.

  • If you are using the pasta in a cold pasta dish like a pasta salad, you’ll want to re-cook the pasta. 

  • Do you prefer a softer, mushier pasta? Then you will for sure need to reboil your noodles if they are undercooked.

  • The pasta is so undercooked that it is still hard and somewhat crunchy. 

Pro Tip # 2 Add the Undercooked Pasta to the Sauce on the Stovetop (how to fix undercooked pasta)

  • If you have slightly undercooked pasta throwing it into a sauce is a great way to fix it. This quick-fix will add some extra flavor and thickness to your sauce. When you make a sauce heavy pasta dish, you can add the undercooked pasta to the sauce and cook for a few minutes inside the sauce. Be aware that this will release some starch into the sauce, potentially thickening the sauce. 

If you happen to have a watery sauce because you took a tomato slicing knife and cut up fresh tomatoes for your sauce, this trick will help thicken your sauce. 

Some chefs prefer to cook their pasta directly in the sauce and skip the step to boil it in water first. Using this method to fix undercooked pasta, adjust the water content in your sauce accordingly. 

How to reboil undercooked pasta? (and ultimately how to fix undercooked pasta)

Often people wonder if you can reboil pasta; well, the simple answer is yes. This is one way we have tested that works for how to fix undercooked pasta.

Reboiling pasta is easy; just boil more water, and once the water is at a rolling boil, add the undercooked pasta. Put your timer on for 60 seconds. It’s essential to stand right by the stovetop and taste test the pasta after 60 seconds; if it’s still not cooked well enough, then add another 30-60 seconds on your timer. 

Keep tasting the pasta until you are ready to drain it. 

The amount of time you need to reboil the pasta depends on if you like pasta that is al dente instead of soft. If you like it al dente, then you may only need a minute or two more. On the other hand, if you want a soft pasta, you’ll have to drain it after two minutes or more.

Using a pasta pot with a strainer lid will come in handy when it’s time to drain your pasta for the 2nd time.

Making a perfect pasta dish.  Knowing how to fix undercooked pasta is something anyone can learn.

Learn the Best Way to Cook Pasta to Avoid Mistakes

If you want to avoid fixing undercooked pasta, follow these steps when boiling noodles for pasta. Even if you already know how to make the perfect pasta, you still might find yourself wondering at one time or another how to fix undercooked pasta.

  1. Use a large pot. Get the largest cookware pot that you have in your cupboard. With pasta making, the cookware can never be too large. When pasta has more room to boil without getting stuck, it is better. For every pound of pasta, you will need 5-6 quarts of water.

  1. Salt the water after it comes to a boil. As far as making a great pasta dish, it doesn’t matter if you salt the pasta water before or after it comes to a rolling boil. If you decide to salt the pasta water after it comes to a boil, you will prevent your stainless steel pots from pitting. This pitting is a type of rust that can happen from the salt’s reaction with the stainless steel. 

Salting the water after it is at a rolling boil is ideal. It doesn’t allow for enough time for a chemical reaction to take place with your pots. 

Your cookware will be much happier if you salt the pasta water after it comes to a rolling boil!

For every pound of pasta, you need at least 1 ½ TLB of salt. Don’t worry; most of the salt gets dumped down the drain with the water. Salting the pasta water improves the taste of your meal tenfold.

  1. Add the pasta after the water is at a rolling boil! Do not add oil to the pasta water. Instead, stir the noodles until the pasta comes back up to a rolling boil.

  1. Set your timer! This step is crucial if you need to step away for a moment. We all know what happens when you step away from food that is cooking on a stovetop. Frequently you get caught up doing something else, time slips away from you, and now your noodles are mush.

  1. Taste test! Taste-testing pasta is more important than setting a timer. If you can stand there and test pasta pieces throughout the boiling process, you will get a perfect pasta (to your liking) every time! If you test the noodles repeatedly you won’t ever have to wonder how to fix undercooked pasta.

  1. Drain the pasta noodles immediately when done, but don’t put them back on the hot burner. Otherwise, they will continue to cook.

Pasta Making FAQ

In conclusion, you can easily add slightly undercooked pasta to the sauce to continue the cooking process. On the other hand, if your pasta is very undercooked or if you are one of those rare types who like it mushy, then just reboil the undercooked pasta!