Catelli Gluten Free Pasta

Remember when you had to go to specialty food shops to find gluten free pasta? With more and more people having gluten sensitivity, gluten free products have now hit the mainstream. There are more gluten free products available in major grocery stores than every before – including gluten free pasta.

There are many different types of gluten free pastas in the market. Some are made with rice flour, corn flour, quinoa flour or a blend of several types. Some have a different taste or texture depending on what it’s made of but they generally perform well compared to bread and other baked goods that rely heavily on gluten for their integrity.

Catelli gluten free pasta is made from a unique four-grain blend of white rice, brown rice, corn and quinoa and can be found in most major stores across Canada including Shoppers Drug Mart, No Frills, Safeway, Loblaws and No Frills. A 340 gram box retails for approximately $2.99.

I received samples of gluten free pasta from Catelli to send out to my product review club so 24 lucky recipients had the chance to try the product for free.

Have you tried Catelli gluten free pasta? What did you think of it? Let us know in the comments below.

20 thoughts on “Catelli Gluten Free Pasta

  1. Overall I would say this product was mediocre… here is why:

    1. TASTE: Slightly sweet and not at all “whole-grainy.” Side note: I’m use to eating gluten-free grains that have more of an earthy note like buckwheat, so this pasta didn’t cut it out for me.

    2. TEXTURE: Soft & slightly-chewy when eaten on the day of, cooked it for 6 minutes vs. 7-9. BUT it did get mushy the next day after reheating on the stovetop. Some of the pasta strands actually broke into pieces when I was scooping it into my pan to reheat. I prefer pasta that has more of a chewy texture.

    Below is how it stacks-up compared to other gluten-free pastas that I have tried in the past, based on a 56g dry weight serving; which in my opinion is a more realistic serving size than 85g because let’s face it, most of us really don’t need THAT much carbohydrates in one meal. Overall, Catelli is on par with other gluten-free pasta brands when it comes to nutrition. It is however the only one that has a food additive added to it. If you are looking for a really nutrient-dense gluten-free pasta I highly recommend trying the Eco Chef’s ( line-up of legume based pasta. It is expensive but very tasty 🙂

    BRAND – Ingredients; Calories; Fibre; Protein; %DV Iron [/56g]

    (A) CATELLI – White rice flour, brown rice flour, corn flour, quinoa flour, monoglycerides; 200 kcal; 2g fibre; 4g protein; 4% DV Iron

    (B) RIZOPIA – Whole grain brown rice, rice bran; 200kcal; 2g fibre; 4g protein; 6% DV Iron

    (C) GOGO QUINOA – White rice flour, quinoa; 200kcal; 1g fibre; 5g protein; 20% DV Iron

    (D) SAN ZENONE – 100% organic corn flour; 200kcal; 1g fibre; 4g protein; 1% DV Iron

    (E) ECO CHEFS – 100% red lentil; 200kcal; 6g fibre; 14g protein; 22% DV Iron

  2. This was my second time experience with gluten free pasta. (The first time was when my friend prepared, and I was not a big fan of it… they were a lot harder than I preferred, not “al dente”, just hard.) I tried eating as they were as soon as after I cooked, and used them for the pasta salad.

    To me, it tasted more like white rice rather than pasta maybe because it’s made with white rice. Even when mixed with olive oil, some spices, and Parmesan cheese, we could tell that it was different from the regular wheat pasta. They were more “plain” taste and they didn’t have any nutty flavour at all.

    As for the texture, I was not a big fan of it at all as they fall apart easily. Because I don’t like over-cooked pasta, I was being careful with cooking. But it turned out softer than regular pasta and they fall apart very easily. I don’t know if it’s normal as gluten free pasta, but I have noticed that there were tiny cracks all over the pasta and I could chew them before cooking, which will lead to falling apart more easily than regular pasta.
    This was my first try to cook gluten free pasta, and maybe I should have cooked a lot shorter time.

    For the people who are avoiding gluten and who don’t like nutty flavour, I think this product will be good. However, for the people who don’t need to avoid gluten, I would not recommend and I wouldn’t buy it for myself, either.

  3. I don’t normally buy gluten free products so wasn’t sure what to expect. I was afraid that the pasta would turn out very mushy. Since I like my pasta very al dente, I undercooked it slightly and served it with a light tomato sauce. I liked the taste and would say it is a close approximation to regular (wheat) pasta. To me, in terms of appearance, it looked like regular pasta which is a plus. I did, however, find it a bit stiffer and slightly grainier than regular pasta. If I was avoiding gluten, I would recommend the product. Since I’m not avoiding gluten, I am indifferent.

  4. Thank you for letting me try this product through the product review club. I boiled the pasta for 6-7 minutes and tried it with a simple tomato sauce. I really wanted to see how it would compare to regular wheat pasta.

    I have to say that I was very impressed with this product. It tastes and feels just like wheat pasta! It was al dente when cooked and didn’t have a different flavour compared to other gluten free pastas that I’ve tried.

    I find that pasta made with rice flour doesn’t have the same structural integrity and corn pasta sometimes has a bit of a corn taste to it. But the Catelli gluten free pasta tasted just like regular pasta. They have done a good job with their formulation. For $2.99 a box, the price is on par with other gluten free pastas that are available in the market.

    This is my favourite gluten free pasta at the moment and I would recommend it to people who are trying to avoid gluten.

  5. I reviewed the pasta in my own family and was given the opportunity to receive another box and have another person review it, so I gave it to my boyfriend’s mother who is very health conscious.

    Both my family and hers enjoyed the pasta a lot, noting there was no taste difference between regular white/whole wheat. Personally, I only use multigrain pasta and quite missed the wheaty taste of it, but I have had other gluten-free pastas which let an unsettling after taste in my mouth that this one did not possess. Both my family and my boyfriend’s family felt the texture was the same; many members of our families weren’t even aware it was gluten-free as opposed to white or whole wheat.

    My mother and my boyfriend regularly eat gluten-free pasta and both of them said they really enjoyed the flavour and texture of the Catelli pasta. I have never tried gluten-free before, so I really had no expectations of flavour or texture, but I did enjoy it quite a bit.

    I wouldn’t necessarily use it again because multigrain pasta is my favourite, but my boyfriend’s mother said she definitely would cook with it again especially because she tries to use gluten-free products when available.

    I would definitely recommend it to people who have gluten intolerances and are looking for a very nice product, both texture and taste wise. The usage of white rice in the pasta makes me frown a bit, but the brown rice + quinoa really make up for it. It’s a cool product that everyone I know who tried it was pleasantly surprised by its taste and texture.

    Overall, my family and my boyfriend’s family rating, would be a combined 4 out of 5 stars. This product is really neat and Catelli did a great job with this formulation.

  6. I used the Catelli Fusilli in a dish with skim milk béchamel, low fat swiss cheese, rainbow Swiss chard, and shitake mushrooms. The fusilli was cooked first and then baked in the mixture, like a casserole. The Catelli Fusilli worked very well. Hard to taste the difference from standard boxed gluten free pasta. I have used the GoGo quinoa in the same dish. Not much difference in the two products except for the colour. GoGo being two colours and a bit more translucent tasting (not sure how to describe the texture). The Catelli gluten free pasta worked just as well as the standard wheat boxed pasta.

    The issue that I have with this Catelli gluten free pasta and some other boxed pasta is the fiber content. I always look for more than 3 g of fiber. I wish this was higher in finer as well as no white rice flour. I would also prefer a higher vitamin count as well. Not sure if it is possible to add back vitamins to this gluten free pasta in the production. The other elements I look for is organic.

    I would definitely recommend this product to my gluten free clients as an alternative. As for my family, and myself, If I don’t make my own pasta, I prefer a high fiber product that is organic, totally whole grain, and GMO free.

  7. I was really impressed by this product! I thought there was very little difference in taste and texture between the Catelli gluten free pasta and the Catelli Healthy Harvest that resides in my cupboard. I used the same homemade sauce as I normally would and cooked the pasta for about 8 minutes. I would definitely use it again and will recommend it to the families of the kids I work with who have T1D and celiac disease. For a gluten free product, I thought the nutritionals were adequate. The fiber content isn’t ideal, but I also don’t expect much from a pre-packaged product. I’d prefer people to get their fiber from fruits and vegetables, for example. So pairing this product with a sauce full of vegetables and a dessert that includes fresh fruit is a great way to help meet fiber needs.

  8. My wife is gluten-free, so we eat a lot of gluten-free pasta, and we’ve tried quite a few. After I’d used half a box of the Catelli, she was saying how much she liked it and how we should have some more. In fact, I ended up going and buying more for more meals.

    It’s not a perfect product; it takes longer to cook than most other ones I’ve tried. But the texture once it’s cooked is good – it doesn’t go mushy in a hurry. It also doesn’t turn the pot water into sludge. If you undercook it it’s not all that likeable, but once cooked it’s still decent and firm. And we do like the flavour. And my wife was particularly enthusiastic about it. It’s also nice that it’s available in rotini and penne, as it’s generally easier to get long noodles such as linguine, spaghetti, and cappellini in gluten-free versions; the shaped ones are harder to find and often not as good.

  9. I really enjoyed the Catelli gluten free penne pasta. I made it for myself and my family and we all felt that it was a very good replacement for traditional white pasta. There was a very slight corn taste but I didn’t mind it and neither did the 3 other people who tried the product with me. I have tried brown rice pastas and corn pastas and much preferred the taste and texture of the combined rice/corn/quinoa Catelli product. However, I found the cooking time to be a bit inaccurate as even at 10 minutes it was a still a little more al dente than I would like, but I did not want to cook the pasta any longer as I find gluten free pastas tend to suddenly get over cooked very easily.
    I would definitely recommend this product to people searching for a gluten free alternative that tastes similar to conventional wheat pasta. Personally, I am looking forward to trying the fusilli and the spaghetti in the collection.

  10. This is the first gluten free pasta product I have ever tried. I boiled it for 10 minutes and it was still quite firm. I was surprised at the taste. I can actually eat it plain, without sauce. It looks just like white pasta and the texture is very similar to whole wheat pasta.

    I would recommend this product.

  11. I really enjoyed this product. To better appreciate the taste and texture I chose to use a very simple and light tomato, olive oil and garlic sauce (I would describe it almost like a rinse). I found the texture to be somewhat mealy as in a corn meal bread would be. The taste was quite unique and very different from just a plain rice noodle. I preferred this taste to a plain rice or soba noodle. When cooking it seemed like the pasta broke apart easily. I also found the cooking time to be inaccurate. It does take longer than the suggested 9 minutes, it may have been closer to 13-15 minutes. It is really important to use a large pot and a large water to pasta ratio. It seemed to me that the pasta allowed for quite a bit of foaming when boiling. I would definitely use this product more often. To test its texture and taste again I plan on using it to make a cold pasta salad primavera…can’t wait!

  12. I have been gluten free for over 2 years now and I have had the opportunity to try many different kinds of gluten free pasta. I would definitely buy Catelli pasta again, I quite enjoyed it. I cooked it slightly longer than the instructions on the box because it was still very firm after about 9-10 mins. It had a great texture to it and held together nicely unlike some other brands I’ve tried. The box made enough for about 4 servings (or 3 large servings) so almost the exact same price as the corn pasta currently in my kitchen. I also like the fact that it uses GMO-free ingredients, no preservatives, and low sodium!

  13. I’ve never eaten gluten-free pasta before but was open to trying it. I found the taste acceptable, however the texture was off-putting. It didn’t have the same ‘heft’ as wheat pasta. I prefer wheat pasta that can absorb and retain sauce and I found this gluten-free pasta failed to do so. I would stick to my regular pasta next time. Although the texture wasn’t satisfactory, I’d recommend it to people who are looking for gluten-free pasta since the retail price is quite affordable ($2.99/box).

  14. Thank you for the opportunity to taste Catelli’s gluten-free penne! As someone who avoids eating gluten day to day due to an intolerance, I am always on the lookout for alternatives and pasta is one of the gluten-based foods I miss the most. I had recently enjoyed a ‘cheat’ meal of penne in a rosé sauce at Grazie in Toronto when I tested the Catelli gluten-free, and it measured up!
    I made a fresh pasta sauce with cherry tomatoes, herbs and garlic, and tossed it with the penne with some grated smoked cheddar- it was beautiful. I served it to two friends who loved the dish, and there was not even a mention that it was gf! I feel that the texture, taste and appearance of the pasta was very comparable to regular pasta containing wheat/semolina.

    I did cook the pasta a couple minutes longer than the al dente recommended on the box, and it came out perfectly in my opinion. I wouldn’t hesitate to purchase this product in the future, as I actually have been unable to find penne ‘rigate’ in gf form (rizopia and bulk barn seem to only carry the lisce ones). The price point is comparable as far as gluten-free products, and I am impressed that the product is certified gmo-free, especially considering the prevalence of gmo corn crops these days.

    Five stars!! 🙂

  15. Thank you for the opportunity to try this pasta! The curiosity has been satisfied!

    The pasta tasted good. Very similar taste and mouth feel to regular pasta. I cooked it for a few minutes longer than recommended on the box (I always do as we like it softer) and most of it fell apart.

    Aside from that the flavour was good, I would recommend it to someone who has to follow a gluten free diet as it’s one more option that they can have. I love pasta and if I had to follow a gluten-free diet I’d eat this pasta all the time as I couldn’t live without my pasta! I would also use this brand again if I had to make a gluten free meal for a few of my gluten-free family members. It would make my life a bit easier cooking for them by having pasta as an option!

    I gave this product 4 stars because of the pasta falling apart. If it didn’t do that then it would have received 5 stars.

  16. I would have to say I love trying new products and experimenting.

    I have tried gluten-free pasta before. This time, I cooked the pasta following the directions – I found at 7 minutes it a little too chewy so kept in in another minute. After draining and before adding the tomato, meat sauce I had made, I rinsed it. Oh my… the pasta completely fell apart into pieces – so that it wasn’t that visually appealing.

    Taste wise… the taste is fine – very little taste actually. Texture- grainy. Since brown rice and quinoa are two of the ingredients I would have liked the nutrition and taste to come out a little more. Not that different from white pasta except for the texture.

    Since I haven’t tried many gluten-free pastas – except rice pasta… I would have to say it did pass the test. It would be no problem to get my family to eat this – and I would say that most wouldn’t likely notice that much difference – since we all prefer the sauce better anyway!

    I would not likely purchase again. I much prefer the texture of a whole grain mix pasta. Having said that I like the fact that it does contain a couple of whole grains and does contribute some fibre – so comparable to other pastas for that.
    I would recommend it to someone needing to avoid gluten.

    I would rate this product a 3/5. Cook less than the recommended time and try not rinsing the pasta for a better texture.

  17. This is also my first time trying gluten free pasta. I should also add I don’t eat pasta very often either. 🙂

    First impressions: looks pretty similar to white pasta. I followed the box instructions but the pasta was definitely undercooked at 7 mins. I cooked it for about 10. One broke apart but the rest stayed in tack.

    I made it with homemade tomato sauce, and threw in some eggplant and chicken. Taste was fine, but a bit bland. Texture was noticeably different: not springy. That’s what gluten does. It wasn’t unpalatable by any means, but I just have a personal preference towards the springy bite and chewiness of traditional pasta 🙂

    1. I’ve tried a few non-wheat pastas and feel they all lack the same properties that I have come to expect from a pasta:

      1. Different al-dente texture. Although this product had a bit more ‘chewy-ness’ than other gluten-free brands i’ve tried, there is a noticeable difference.

      2. Not as much ‘expansion’ when cooked. I’ve come to expect pasta to double in size when cooked, therefore (at least psychologically) I fell I am getting much more food than the package suggests. I found that if I could cooked the same dried portions as non-gluten pasta and I have a smaller meal; which may be healthier in the long term :).

      3. Tastes a bit like ‘asian’ noodles. Since it is rice based, it has properties i normally associate with asian noodles like vermicelli, pho, etc. After the meal, I do feel like I ate a bowl of rice rather than pasta (less bloated, but also less full).

      I made the pasta with a simple red-wine tomato sauce with some ground pork, veggies with some cheese on top. The dish ended up being like a dish you can get at a Hong Kong cafe (e.g. baked pork-chop on pasta) so not bad in my books but not really italian. So if I don’t expect to be too authentic, than the gluten-free pasta is a reasonable choice.

      I find the price too high for the product. It really should be similar to other rice-like noodles, which is normally in the same price range as wheat pasta.

  18. I have tried a couple of random brands of Gluten free pasta and some just turn to mush. I cooked it for 7 minutes and I like the texture it had. This one kept it’s shape and texture. I ate it right away with a beef stroganoff and I had some for lunch the next day. It retained it’s texture and was tasty. It doesn’t have a distinct taste, so it didn’t overpower the dishes.

    I like the price point. Although, I prefer fresh pasta and that is usually what I buy if I am craving it, this is a good gluten free alternative that can be a back up in my pantry.

    Thanks for letting me try this pasta.

    1. I have never tried gluten free pasta and was sent this box of Catelli gluten free pasta to try. I had it with a rose sauce.

      It took longer to cook than the average white pasta and came out al-dente. Al-dente is how I prefer to eat pasta. It would take quite a bit of time to overcook it compared to other white pasta. It tasted similar to white pasta.

      This is a pasta that I could serve others and I doubt they would realize it is gluten free. This would be a great pasta option for people with Celiac disease.

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