I am a super involved cook as far as most college students go. I think of cooking as a relaxing, but fun creative output. I love making all my food from scratch and taking time to put my personal spin on everything from fancy sauces to homemade ramen. But on busy school nights I struggle just to make pasta. Yes, it's a simple food to cook. But it still requires pulling out another pot, waiting for the water to boil and then waiting anywhere from 3-10 minutes just to get some pasta. So when I heard about Barilla Ready Pasta, I was obviously intrigued. 

After seeing the Hulu commercial over ten times (I'm a procrastinator), I gave in. It was a top notch commercial you guys. I've never been so easily hooked. I made an impulsive one click purchase on Amazon, because I had to know. Now that I've wised up to the pasta innovation world, here's what I've learned.

The Basics 

Don't let the new packaging, or kicky commercials fool you, it's really just pasta. The pasta has been fully cooked, then mixed with some salt and olive oil and packaged. The real plus is it has no preservatives added to it. So unlike other microwaveable meals or frozen food, this is really basic and simple. On top of that Barilla is pretty trustworthy as far as pasta goes. They're the largest pasta distributor in the US. Which means they're basically my favorite company.

It's also outrageously easy to prepare. All you have to do is tear a small hole in the bag, pop it in the microwave for 60 seconds and voila you have pasta!

Taste Test

tagliatelle, penne, spaghetti, carbohydrate, wheat, macaroni, pasta
Morgan Goldberg

The final product definitely tastes like regular pasta. There's nothing especially exciting about it. The only discernible difference between this and regular noodles, is that the pasta is much smaller. I bought a bag of elbows, because who doesn't love the iconic Mac and cheese shape? They delivered as far as taste, but they were oddly miniaturized. Aside from that, the color is a little darker than regular pasta. At first I assumed the pasta was whole wheat, but it doesn't say that anywhere on the package so that issue remains a mystery. Overall there is no stark difference from the classic Barilla box. 

So Should I Buy it?

meat, sauce, spaghetti, pasta, vegetable
Max Bartick

For people who hate cooking but love pasta, this is a clear yes. But, I would also recommend this product to college students who like getting fancy with their meals. I know it might seem like it's not enough of a shortcut to make a difference, or maybe the problem is that you don't like taking shortcuts at all. But, the way I see it, not having to worry about making the pasta gives you time to experiment with cool sauces, side dishes or maybe even desserts. This isn't a microwaveable meal. It just gives you the added time to take your dinner to the next level. The best part is that it ends up saving you the hassle of cleaning an extra pot. Of course, the real reason to buy it is that it's the perfect solution to late night drunchies.

I've been saying for years that I wish there was a way to cook pasta faster.  So I'm feeling like the world is finally making my dreams come true. I will still keep regular pasta around, but for those late weekend nights or busy week nights this is a top notch innovation.