Home Articles What Are Egg Noodles? (+ How To Make Them)

What Are Egg Noodles? (+ How To Make Them)

Egg noodles hold a special place in the pasta world. But what are egg noodles, exactly?

Simply put- they are strands of dough enriched with eggs. Egg noodles possess a unique texture and flavor and work well in countless dishes.

What Are Egg Noodles? (+ How To Make Them) featuring Nests of Homemade Egg Noodles

You can use them in comforting soups, savory stir-fries, or even decadent desserts.

No matter the recipe, egg noodles offer a versatile canvas for culinary creativity.

So, if you want to learn more about egg noodles, keep reading.

I’ve got all the eggcellent info you need right here!

What Are Egg Noodles?

Egg noodles are unleavened dough noodles made from eggs and wheat flour.

They are often long and flat, though some are curled or twisted into other shapes.

You can find them in most grocery stores in the dry pasta aisle. (Even though they are not precisely pasta.)

While popular enough in America, they are a staple of many ethnic cuisines. You’ll find them in Asian, Turkish, Jewish, and German dishes, especially.

Homemade Egg Noodles Hanging from the Pasta Maker with An Egg, A Cracked Egg, a Bowl of Flour, and A Rolling Pin in the Background

Egg Noodles vs. Pasta (What’s the Difference?)

Most people consider egg noodles a type of pasta. And yes, you willfind them on the pasta aisle of most grocery stores.

But egg noodles and pasta are not the same. In fact, there are some pretty obvious differences between them.

First and foremost, all egg noodles must contain one key ingredient: eggs.

Some pasta varieties also have eggs in their ingredients, but not all of them. Most pasta in the grocery store does not contain eggs.

Also, all pasta contains a key ingredient, too: semolina.

But you can make egg noodles from semolina, all-purpose flour (most common), rice flour, etc.

Also, though some egg noodles are twisty, they are typically ribbon-shaped. In other words, they’re long and flat.

Even when twisted, they are still long and flat – just twisty, too.

Pasta can come in various shapes. Think of all the pasta varieties out there!

There’s macaroni, rotini, ravioli, spaghetti, and so much more.

Also, the uses and cooked textures of egg noodles and pasta differ. Most people use eggless pasta in Italian recipes.

Egg noodles are prevalent in Asian, Jewish, German, and other cuisines. They’re also more versatile and can even pop up in desserts.

Egg noodles’ texture is softer and more tender than pasta’s when cooked. Regular pasta is chewier.

Dried Egg Noodles on a Wooden Board

How Are Egg Noodles Made?

Here are the steps for making homemade egg noodles:

  1. Combine the ingredients. The ingredients for egg noodles include eggs, flour, and salt.
    • Combine those ingredients slowly with a whisk or your hands.
    • Once you create a slightly sticky dough, move on to step 2.
  2. Knead the dough. This takes a little time but less than it would take to make bread. Knead until the dough is firm, smooth, and no longer sticky.
    • Kneading helps activate the gluten protein network.
    • It also makes the dough more elastic.
  3. Shape the dough. You want a nice bar -or ball- shape. This will help you roll it out more easily.
  4. Let it rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. Giving the dough time to rest helps relax the gluten. It also helps hydrate the flour.
  5. Cut and shape the dough. Roll out, cut, and shape the dough into egg noodles.
    • The noodles are long and flat, like ribbons. However, you can twist them or use pasta tools to shape them differently.
  6. Cook the noodles. Cook the noodles immediately to ensure they have the best flavor.

However, you can freeze the noodles to cook later or dry them. (This last option makes them similar to store-bought egg noodles.)

How to Cook Egg Noodles

Cooking egg noodles is like cooking pasta. You will boil them! Some recipes may require you to partially cook them before using them.

The cooking time may vary depending on several factors, including:

  • How thick the noodles are
  • How tender the noodles should be
  • The recipe
  • The shape of the noodles
  • Whether the noodles are fresh, dry, or frozen

So, you may have to adjust the boiling time a bit. But the cooking process- simmering in boiling water – is the same*.

*Note: Some recipes may require you to add uncooked egg noodles. In those cases, follow the directions in the recipe.

Bowl of Cooked and Seasoned Egg Noodles in a Large Bowl in the Background, with Egg Noodles Twirled Around a Fork in the Foreground Focus

Regional Varieties of Egg Noodles

The following are the most popular regional varieties of egg noodles:

Youmian

You’ll most often find these egg noodles in Chinese fare. They also pop up in Southeastern and Eastern Asian cuisine.

Their uses vary, but people often add them to stir-fries and soups.

Lokshen

Lokshen egg noodles are primarily found in Jewish and Pennsylvania Dutch recipes.

They are always dried and sometimes made only with egg whites.

They come in various sizes, including wide, extra-wide, and medium.

Kesme

Kesme egg noodles are popular in Iran, Turkey, and other Middle Eastern countries.

People form them by rolling their dough flat, folding it like an accordion, and slicing it.

Besides eggs and flour, milk is another ingredient often found in kesme noodles. Many soup and stew recipes feature this variety of noodles.

Spaetzle

Of all egg noodle varieties, spaetzle noodles are the most varied. Germans make and cook spaetzle noodles in many different ways.

Most people use the extrusion method to make them. (Extrusion means pressing raw dough through a grater, ricer, or colander.)

To cook them, most people boil them, dip them in butter, and fry them.

Egg Pasta

Egg pasta differs from egg noodles because it is true pasta. (Pasta made with semolina.)

Unlike traditional pasta, though, the recipe also includes eggs.

This makes it egg pasta instead of egg noodles or traditional pasta. This variety is popular in Italian cuisine.

What Are Egg Noodles? (+ How To Make Them)

What are egg noodles? Learn all about egg noodles, including how to make them, how they’re different from regular pasta, and all their varieties.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling out the noodles

  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

  • 2 large eggs

Instructions

  • Gather the ingredients.
  • Combine the flour and salt on a clean work surface or in a large, shallow bowl or serving platter.
  • Make a well (hole) in the center of the flour mixture. Crack the eggs into the well.
  • Use a whisk (or fork) or your hands to beat the eggs and then gradually incorporate the flour into the eggs, taking it from the edges of the well.
  • Keep stirring until a solid, but sticky, dough begins to form.
  • Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface.
  • With well-floured hands, begin to knead the dough. Add more flour as necessary to keep the dough from sticking to the work surface or your hands. Knead for 5-10 minutes, until the dough is smooth, firm, shiny, and no longer sticky.
  • Shape the dough into a ball, then wrap it with plastic wrap (or put it in a bowl and cover the bowl with plastic wrap).
  • Let it rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, up to overnight.
  • Divide the dough in half. Roll out one half on a well-floured surface to your desired thickness. Rotate the dough and sprinkle with flour as needed to keep it from sticking.
  • Cut and shape the dough. You can use a knife, pizza cutter, or pasta extruder to make your noodles. You can leave them flat or shape them as desired.
  • Let the noodles dry on a rack, while you roll out the rest. Cook them immediately. Enjoy!
What Are Egg Noodles?

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author avatar
NaTaya Hastings
NaTaya Hastings is a food and recipe writer for Good Recipes. She’s an educator, boy mom, dog mom, and whatever-stray-enters-the-yard mom. As a result, she's constantly cooking for both humans and animals.

Luckily, she enjoys it!

Though born, raised, and still living in Alabama, her specialty is NOT down-home Southern cooking. Instead, she loves to experiment with Asian, Mexican, Italian, and other ethnic cuisines. She has two mottos when it comes to cooking. “The more spice, the better!” and “There’s no such thing as too much garlic!”

She’s also pretty good with desserts. Especially the easy, no-bake ones.

Her favorite things are cuddling with her four giant dogs, traveling, reading, writing, and hanging out in nature. She’s also pretty excellent at Dominoes.

2 thoughts on “What Are Egg Noodles? (+ How To Make Them)”

  1. Hi Kim,
    I wanted to share with you my egg noodle recipe. It's made the same way except for one little difference is my Grandmother taught me to put a little heavy pinch of baking powder in the noodles while mixing them and they will be a better egg noodle when you cook them. I have been making my noodles from scratch since I was in my 20s, and now I'm in late 60s and praise my Grandmother for showing me how to make them. I can make a batch and freeze for later or however I want to do them. I love your recipes keep up the great work you doing !!! You are a blessing!!!

    Reply

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