What is the Difference Between Lasagna and Pasta

The main difference between lasagna and pasta is that pasta comes in various shapes, including cords, tubes, and ribbons, while the lasagna is a rectangular shaped flat sheet of pasta.

Both lasagna and pasta are Italian dishes popular worldwide mainly because of their unique recipes and different cooking styles. The ingredients mixed in both these dishes are full of flavours and wonderful aromas. Although made out of the same ingredients, these two dishes incorporate different culinary techniques and styles in preparation.

Key Areas Covered

1. What is Lasagna  
     – Definition, Features
2. What is Pasta
     – Definition, Features
3. Similarities – Lasagna and Pasta
     – Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between Lasagna and Pasta
     – Comparison of Key Differences

Key Terms

Lasagna, Pasta

Difference Between Lasagna and Pasta - Comparison Summary

What is Lasagna

Lasagna is one of the popular pasta shapes that has a rectangular or a ribbon shape. Lasagna sheets are usually thicker than tagliatelle pasta. However, just like other pasta variants, lasagna sheets are also made with a dough of flour, water, and eggs. When you prepare lasagna, first you have to boil the rectangular lasagna sheets. Then they need to be drained. After that, you can arrange the lasagna sheets in layers with a filling of your choice and bake it.

Compare Lasagna and Pasta

However, keep in mind that boiling lasagna sheets is necessary if you are using a fresh version of lasagna. You can fill it or add sauce only after pre-boiling. Nowadays, you may spot many commercial versions of lasagna sheets in the local grocery store; these can be used in a baking pan without pre-boiling first. If you are using such instant varieties, it is always better to fill them and add more liquid sauces so that lasagna sheets get more softened during cooking. Generally, we use liquid sauces with tomatoes, meat, pesto, cheese, béchamel or even vegetables with lasagna and top it with a layer of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese to give the dish a creamier flavour.

What is Pasta

Pasta is a generic term that refers to a leavened dough made of wheat flour,  which is frequently used in Italian cuisine. The pasta dough contains wheat flour, eggs, and water. We can mould the pasta dough into varying shapes. Currently, there are over 600 shapes of pasta with 1300 names. It has been used as a staple food for many centuries.  Before the 18th century, people used to make pasta by hand using different techniques.

Lasagna vs Pasta

Today, pasta is made using both hand techniques and machines. When looking at pasta shapes, commonly available shapes include cords, tubes, and ribbons. However, all pasta shapes were originally invented and developed for specific reasons, such as the ability to maintain heat or the ability to retain sauces.

Similarities Between Lasagna and Pasta

  • Pasta and lasagna are made with pasta dough. Lasagna is a pasta sheet with a rectangular or ribbon shape.
  • Both the dishes are the staple food in the Italian food culture.
  • Moreover, we can serve these dishes with sauces based on tomatoes, pesto, cheese, meat, or even vegetables

Difference Between Lasagna and Pasta


Pasta is a dish originally from Italy consisting of dough made of wheat flour while the lasagna is a version of pasta that comes in rectangular or ribbon shapes.


Lasagna sheets are wide and flat, while pasta comes in various shapes, including cords, tubes, and ribbons.


Compared to other varieties of pasta, lasagna sheets are a little thicker.

Popular dishes

Spaghetti alla Puttanesca , Sugo all’Amatriciana, Cacio e Pepe, Tortelli, and Spaghetti alle vongole are some popular pasta dishes while Lasagne alla Bolognese, Skinny Spinach Lasagna ,Taco Lasagna ,Skillet Lasagna and White Cheese and Chicken Lasagna are some popular lasagna recipes.


The main difference between lasagna and pasta is that pasta comes in various shapes, including cords, tubes, and ribbons, while the lasagna is a flat sheet of pasta with a rectangular shape. While there are hundreds of pasta varieties that are boiled and served, only fresh lasagna is pre-boiled and then baked before serving.


1. Gambarini, Cristina. “Lasagna: 5 Variations (You Absolutely Have to Try).” La Cucina Italiana, 30 Nov. 2020.
2. Segan, Francine. “Lasagna: Origins and Varieties of the Beloved Baked Pasta.” La Cucina Italiana, 21 Sept. 2021.

Image Courtesy:

1. “Lasagna (1)” By jeffreyw – Flickr: Mmm…better the next day (CC BY 2.0) via Commons Wikimedia

2. “Pasta-italy-food-to-eat-3764943” (CC0) via Pixabay

About the Author: Anuradha

Anuradha has a BA degree in English, French, and Translation studies. She is currently reading for a Master's degree in Teaching English Literature in a Second Language Context. Her areas of interests include Arts and Literature, Language and Education, Nature and Animals, Cultures and Civilizations, Food, and Fashion.

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