Exploring the Top 7 Substitutes for Vermicelli Pasta

7 Best Vermicelli Pasta Substitutes

Vermicelli pasta, with its thin and delicate strands, is a popular traditional pasta that can be found in various dishes around the world. However, there may be times when vermicelli is not readily available, or when you simply want to try something different. In such cases, it’s helpful to know the best vermicelli substitutes to use in your favorite recipes. Here are seven excellent alternatives to consider:

  1. Spaghetti
    Spaghetti is one of the most recognizable and versatile types of pasta. It can be paired with a variety of sauces and is often used in dishes such as spaghetti bolognese or with tomato sauce and meatballs. While spaghetti is thinner than vermicelli in Italy, it is thicker in the United States. Both dried spaghetti and vermicelli are available, but spaghetti is usually sold in straight strands, while vermicelli is often sold in nests. Cooking times may also vary depending on the thickness, with spaghetti cooking faster in Italy and vermicelli cooking faster in the United States.
  2. Spaghettini
    Spaghettini is a thinner version of spaghetti and works best with light sauces. It cooks quickly, so it’s important to avoid overcooking. Spaghettini is often used in vegetable-based sauces, broths or soups, light dairy sauces or blush sauces. While not as widely available as spaghetti, it can be found in most grocery stores and online.
  3. Fedelini
    Fedelini is a type of pasta similar to spaghetti but slightly thicker than vermicelli. It is made from durum wheat flour and eggs and is often cut into 2-inch pieces. While popular in Italy, fedelini may not be as readily available outside the country. It pairs well with marinara sauce and thin pesto sauce, and can be used in soups and casseroles.
  4. Capellini
    Capellini, also known as angel hair pasta, is a very thin and long pasta that can be an excellent substitute for vermicelli. Like vermicelli, capellini cooks quickly, usually about 2-3 minutes in boiling water. It is commonly used in dishes such as soups, salads, and as an accompaniment to meat and fish recipes. Capellini is available in both dried and fresh forms, with some organic varieties available in whole wheat or buckwheat.
  5. Linguine
    Linguine is a long-stalk pasta that originated in the Liguria region of Italy. It is wider than spaghetti and has a flat, oval shape. While linguine is slightly thicker than vermicelli, it can be substituted for a similar flavor profile. It pairs well with sauces based on olive oil, cream or tomatoes, such as marinara, carbonara or alfredo. Its long strands easily coat thinner sauces.
  6. Bucatini
    Bucatini is a pasta traditionally made and served in and around Rome, Italy. It resembles hollow spaghetti, with the name “bucatini” derived from the Italian word “buco,” meaning “hole. It is available in both dried and fresh forms, although the dried form is more common in the United States. Made from durum wheat flour and water, bucatini can be used as a substitute for pasta in a variety of dishes. Its hollow center allows it to be coated with tomato, meat, butter, cream or seafood sauces.
  7. Rice Stick Noodles
    Rice stick noodles, also known as rice vermicelli or rice noodles, are an excellent alternative to wheat-based vermicelli, especially in Asian dishes. They come in a variety of widths (thin, medium and wide) and lengths, allowing for versatility in creating different dishes. When cooked, rice stick noodles become slightly translucent, chewy and sticky. They absorb the flavors of spices and sauces, making them a perfect substitute for noodles in dishes like Vietnamese pho or Thai pad thai.

In conclusion, when vermicelli is unavailable or you want to try something different, there are several excellent substitutes to consider. Spaghetti, spaghettini, fedelini, capellini, linguine, bucatini, and rice sticks all offer different textures, sizes, and cooking times, making them suitable alternatives for different recipes. Whether you’re making a traditional Italian dish or exploring Asian cuisine, these substitutes will help you create delicious meals without compromising on taste or texture.


What is vermicelli?

Vermicelli pasta is a thin and delicate long strand pasta made from durum wheat semolina. It is commonly used in various dishes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert.

Why would I need a substitute for vermicelli?

There are several reasons why you may need vermicelli substitutes. It could be due to unavailability at your local supermarket, dietary restrictions, or simply because you want to try something different in your recipes.

What are the best pasta substitutes?

The best pasta substitutes include spaghetti, spaghettini, fedelini, capellini, linguine, bucatini, and rice sticks. These alternatives offer different textures, sizes, and cooking times, making them suitable replacements for vermicelli in a variety of dishes.

Can I use these alternatives in any pasta recipe?

Yes, you can use these substitutes in most noodle recipes. However, keep in mind that each substitute has its own unique flavor and texture, which may slightly alter the taste and overall experience of the dish. It’s always a good idea to experiment and adjust the recipe to your liking.

Where can I find these ingredients?

Most of these substitutes, such as spaghetti, spaghettini, capellini, and linguine, can be found in most grocery stores and online. Bucatini and fedelini may be less common, but can still be found in specialty stores or online. Rice stick noodles are often found in Asian grocery stores or in the international section of larger supermarkets.

Can I use gluten-free substitutes for pasta?

Yes, if you are gluten-sensitive or on a gluten-free diet, rice stick noodles can be an excellent substitute for vermicelli. They are naturally gluten-free and widely available. In addition, there are gluten-free pasta options for some of the substitutes mentioned, such as gluten-free spaghetti or rice-based capellini.