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Tasting Egg Noodles

By Lauren Savoie Published

We use these noodles for many of our favorite comfort foods, from chicken soup to tuna casserole. Does it matter which one you buy?

Egg noodles are at the heart of many of our favorite comfort foods, whether they’re swimming in chicken soup, laced through a casserole, or supporting an ample serving of beef stroganoff. Unlike most boxed pastas you find in the supermarket, these noodles have a deeper yellow color and slightly savory flavor from the addition of eggs to the dough and are most commonly found in a broad, loose corkscrew shape (though other shapes and styles do exist).

In search of the best egg noodles, we tried seven top-selling products priced from $2.50 to $4.15 per package ($0.21 to $0.27 per ounce). If a company made more than one shape, we picked its “wide” or “broad” noodle, which we call for most often in recipes. All the products in our lineup are available nationally, except for one; our former winner from Pennsylvania Dutch is a major seller but must be mail-ordered if you live on the West Coast. We sampled the noodles boiled and tossed with butter, in Old-Fashioned Chicken Noodle Soup, and in Skillet Tuna Noodle Casserole.

Our lineup of egg noodles illustrates how much the noodles' shapes and sizes vary from product to product.

Flat, long noodles had a tendency to slip off our spoons.

Tasters Favor a Classic Corkscrew Shape

Ultimately we can recommend all the noodles we tried, but there were some key differences that set our favorite products apart. The first was shape. Though all the noodles are sold as “wide” or “broad,” these terms aren’t standardized. In fact, the noodles in our lineup ran the gamut from thin, wispy corkscrews to long, thick, flat planks. Shape had no bearing on the noodles’ flavor, but we found that it did make a difference in the overall texture and cohesiveness of a dish.

The products also ranged in length, from 1½ to 4½ inches, and the longest two fell to the bottom of our rankings. When we used these noodles in casserole, tasters thought the dish was less cohesive—the lengthy strands didn’t hold the other ingredients together very well—and when we ate them in soup, they slipped off our spoons. But shorter wasn’t always better. One corkscrew-shaped product was the right length yet too narrow: Less than ¼ inch wide, these noodles evaded our forks when we ate them plain and disappeared among the other ingredients in tuna-noodle casserole. The noodles we liked best were a thick corkscrew shape, about ½ inch wide and 1½ inches long when dry. Once cooked, these noodles were easy to scoop up with a spoon in soup or pierce with a fork when eaten plain or in casserole—no chasing noodles around our plates. Their gentle curves also held on to sauce, tuna, and peas in casserole, providing perfectly cohesive bites.

Associate Editor Kate Shannon portions samples of Old-Fashioned Chicken Noodle Soup ahead of a blind taste test of egg noodles.

The Importance of Using Whole Eggs

The factor that had the biggest impact on flavor was the amount and type of egg used in each noodle. Some of the companies tout their noodles as “yolk-free” to appeal to people watching their cholesterol or saturated fat intake. These products still contain egg whites and were almost indistinguishable from yolk-rich products in tuna-noodle casserole, where there were a lot of other ingredients competing with the noodles. But yolk-free products fell short when we tasted them plain or in soup, where the noodles were front and center; tasters described them as too pale and firm, “like rice noodles.”

Both flours are milled from the same type of wheat, but semolina is ground coarser, which gives the noodles more grip.

Our favorite products embraced rich, fatty yolks. The top two had 3 and 2.5 grams of fat per serving, compared to just 1 to 2 grams in most of the lower-ranked products. Since most of the fat in noodles comes from egg yolks, it’s likely that our top-ranked products used more of them; tasters said they were richer and heartier.

Look for Egg Noodles with Semolina Flour

Finally, type of flour separated our winner from the rest of the pack. While most of the noodles we tried are made with only durum flour, our winner also uses semolina. Both flours are milled from the same type of wheat, but semolina is ground coarser, giving the noodles more grip. We thought sauces clung especially well to the product made with a combination of semolina and durum flours.

Our winner is once again Pennsylvania Dutch Wide Egg Noodles (also sold as Mueller’s). It had a relatively high amount of fat compared to the other noodles in our lineup, and it held on to sauce well thanks to the addition of semolina. Its thick corkscrew shape was perfect for soups, casseroles, and just eating plain. For readers on the West Coast, where our winner isn’t available, we recommend our runner-up, Manischewitz Wide Egg Noodles. These noodles are also corkscrew-shaped and performed well in all our tests. We’ll continue to rely on these standbys for our favorite comfort foods.

Taste Test Egg Noodles

We use these noodles for many of our favorite comfort foods, from chicken soup to tuna casserole. Does it matter which one you buy?

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JC
JOHN C.
16 days

Absolutely the best chicken ever, even the breast meat was moist! It's the only way I'll cook a whole chicken again. Simple, easy, quick, no mess - perfect every time. I've used both stainless steel and cast iron pans. great and easy technique for “roasted” chicken. I will say there were no pan juices, just fat in the skillet. Will add to the recipe rotation. Good for family and company dinners too. I've done this using a rimmed sheet pan instead of a skillet and put veggies and potatoes around the chicken for a one-pan meal. Broccoli gets nicely browned and yummy!

Absolutely the best chicken ever, even the breast meat was moist! It's the only way I'll cook a whole chicken again. Simple, easy, quick, no mess - perfect every time. I've used both stainless steel and cast iron pans. great and easy technique for “roasted” chicken. I will say there were no pan juices, just fat in the skillet. Will add to the recipe rotation. Good for family and company dinners too.

MD
MILES D.
JOHN C.
9 days

Amazed this recipe works out as well as it does. Would not have thought that the amount of time under the broiler would have produced a very juicy and favorable chicken with a very crispy crust. Used my 12" Lodge Cast Iron skillet (which can withstand 1000 degree temps to respond to those who wondered if it would work) and it turned out great. A "make again" as my family rates things. This is a great recipe, and I will definitely make it again. My butcher gladly butterflied the chicken for me, therefore I found it to be a fast and easy prep. I used my cast iron skillet- marvellous!

CM
CHARLES M.
11 days

John, wasn't it just amazing chicken? So much better than your typical oven baked chicken and on par if not better than gas or even charcoal grilled. It gets that smokey charcoal tasted and overnight koshering definitely helps, something I do when time permits. First-time I've pierced a whole chicken minus the times I make jerk chicken on the grill. Yup, the cast iron was not an issue.