Does It Really Work to Add Oil to Boiling Pasta Water?

Jan 10, 2014
Veronica Brandy

Does this Really Work to Add Oil to Boiling Pasta WaterQuestion: My mother always told me to add a few drops of oil to boiling water to keep pasta from sticking together. Does this really work? Sent by Joanna, NY

Editor:  We are sorry to bust one of the biggest kitchen myth, but we usually don’t recommend adding oil to pasta water. Oil makes the noodles slippery, causing the sauce to slides right off the pasta. And nobody wants their noodles floating on a sea of bolognese sauce. To prevent sticking, cook your pasta in a large pot with plenty of water, checking regularly that it doesn’t aggregate to the bottom. But if you want to flavor your freshly cooked pasta with a dash of olive oil, that’s another story!

(Image credit : Nina L. palmer)

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