We are a nation of pasta lovers. It’s a versatile ingredient that can be combined with a variety of sauces to turn it into a tasty and nutritious meal. Pasta without a doubt tastes much better when it is made fresh – but that might seem like a lot of hard work. Thankfully, owning an electric pasta maker at home takes the hard work out of making fresh pasta.
What Is An Electric Pasta Maker?
There are two types of electric pasta makers currently available to buy for use at home. They are quite different machines when compared, and produce completely different results;
Electric Pasta Roller – This is comparable to a manual pasta maker (except of course it does the rolling for you!) A pasta roller will require you to mix all the ingredients by hand, including kneading, and then it will run the pasta dough through it’s rollers to produce pasta such as lasagne sheets, tagliatelle, fettucine etc.
Electric Pasta Extruder – An extruder works differently to a roller. With this type of machine you just need to put all the ingredients in without the need to mix and knead it by hand. The extruder does all the work for you. An extruder will also produce pasta shapes including popular kinds such as penne, fusilli and macaroni.
Philips Pasta Maker (Pasta Extruder)
Features At A Glance
Size L343 x W215 x H300 mm
Included measuring cup, recipe booklet, cleaning tool, 1 year warranty, 4 shaping discs
Philips are the top selling brand of pasta machines in Italy. This automatic extruder may be at the high end of the price range for homemade pasta making, but it is the best you can get for making fresh pasta in your home.
Quite simply it takes all the hard work out of kneading your dough as it automatically does it for you, with the ability to extrude 1 pound of fresh pasta or noodles in 15 minutes. All you need to do is add your ingredients into the lid and let the machine take over.
And there is no need to worry about what ingredients to use as this model comes with a recipe booklet to get you started with pasta making. Twenty recipes are included.
Included with the Philips pasta maker are 4 shaping disks for making spaghetti, fettucini, lasagne and penne. And there is no need to worry about the attachments going missing or cluttering up your kitchen. There is a handy drawer in the machine to store them in when not in use. Additional attachments are available to buy separately to cater for different pasta shapes.
The machine is easy to clean as well. Users recommend leaving the dough to dry out before cleaning and then using the included cleaning brush to clean it.
What We Like: Effortless pasta making, speed of making large amounts of pasta
What We Don’t Like: Higher price than pasta roller machines (but the speed and ease of use makes up for this)
Atlas Electric Pasta Machine
Features At A Glance
Size 12.6 x 7.9 x 10 inches
Weight 8 pounds (3.6kg)
Included 10 year warranty for machine, 2 years for motor.
If you are after a durable and long lasting pasta making machine, Atlas are a brand worth considering. Both their manual and automatic pasta rollers are made from the highest quality.
Unlike the manual version, this one has a motor attached, making pasta making so much easier and less tiresome. The motor is also detachable.
There are two attachments to make different types of pasta as well as 9 settings to adjust the thickness of the pasta dough.
Some recipes are included with the machine.
There is a clamp so that the machine can be attached to a counter top to prevent it from moving around when in use.
The machine is easy to clean. Simply allow it dry out (don’t put it under water or it will rust), and use a small brush to wipe away any dough or ingredients.
What We Like: Produces amazing pasta without the hard work of a manual, easy to clean, high quality machine
What We Didn’t Like: We can’t find anything not to like! It may cost more than the manual version but when you consider the time and effort you are saving from turning the rollers, it is well worth the extra cost.
Philips Compact Pasta Maker
Features At A Glance
Size L350 x W135 x H287 mm
Included 3 shaping discs, recipe book, cleaning tool, measuring cup
Philips have released another version of their popular pasta extruder reviewed above. This later model is a compact version, taking up less counter space.
Although the power is less than the Avance model (only by 50 watts) this has no impact on performance and quality of the pasta.
The significantly smaller size of the machine in comparison is likely to have a positive impact on the frequency in which you use it. This smaller footprint on your kitchen worktop means you can probably keep it out of the cupboard and use it regularly, especially as you are able to produce 2 to 3 servings of pasta (400g) in just 18 minutes. That’s 18 minutes from putting the ingredients in to it coming out one of the shaping discs.
There are 3 shaping discs included with the machine, with plans to produce more to buy as additional parts. The 3 discs that are currently included make penne, fettucine and spaghetti.
What We Like: Compact size, cheaper than previous Phillips model, ease of use, speed, tasty pasta
What We Don’t Like: Only 3 pasta shaping discs available at the time of reviewing (but we understand there will be more available in the future)
Electric Pasta Roller Vs Pasta Extruder
Both electric pasta machine types are easy to use owing to the motor that does all the rolling of dough for you.
If you want ultimate convenience than a pasta extruder as opposed to a roller should be your choice. You will not need to knead any dough, in fact, all you need to do is weigh out the ingredients and put them in the lid of your chosen machine. You will pay more for this convenience, but if you plan on making pasta at home frequently, the investment is worth it (we think once you taste fresh pasta made from scratch you’ll be pretty addicted!)
If you still like to have the feeling of kneading the dough – and it can be a therapeutic activity – then opt for the electric roller. It may take a little longer to produce your pasta but you will have the satisfaction of knowing you worked for it 😉