The Most Popular Pasta Dish in Every U.S. State

Graphic for the Most Popular Pasta Dish in Every U.S. State

The act of eating a pasta dish has been forever immortalized on-screen as a symbol of romance and flirtation. We all swooned when Lady and Tramp first nosed a meatball and met for a kiss at the end of a noodle.

Cooking with a significant other and sitting down to a heaping plate of pasta is an act of comfort, love, and indulgence. Here at Shane Co., we’re interested in all things romance, and yes, for these reasons, pasta makes it high on our list! Sunday, October 17 is National Pasta Day and we’re celebrating by mapping out your pasta favorites.

Will meatballs be on people’s plates along the coast? Are cheese-covered dishes satisfying the Midwest? Which pasta dishes are the masses Googling most in 2021? We turned to Google Trends to find out.

Using Google Trends, we analyzed the search volume of 27 pasta dishes over the past 12 months to find the most popular pasta dish in each state and nationwide. Find out if the dish you’ve been craving made the list!

The Most Popular Pasta Dish in Every State

A map graphic showing the most popular pasta dish in every U.S. state

Let’s break down these favorite pasta dishes state by state.

There doesn’t seem to be any obvious connection between states who love one pasta dish — for example, spaghetti and meatballs is most popular in Hawaii, Kentucky, and Vermont. Now, however, they’re unified by their collective love for this pasta!

Another unlikely trio is Illinois, Maryland, and New York, whose constituents searched most for squid ink pasta.

Lasagna was most popular in Alaska and Wisconsin. We’re total experts in engagement rings, not so much pasta trends, but we can’t help but note both states ranked top 10 in the World Population Review’s Coldest States 2021. Lasagna, made of stacked layers of flat noodle sheets filled with sauces, meats, veggies, and cheeses, is baked in the oven. The resulting dish is a toasty, cheesy pasta casserole. Alaska and Wisconsin can surely appreciate that hot meal in below-zero winters!

Florida and California are two coastal states with the same favorite (lobster mac and cheese), while the largest U.S. producer of lobster, Maine, prefers spaghetti carbonara!

The Most Popular Pasta Dishes in the U.S. Overall

Chart showing the most popular pasta dishes overall

Now let’s take a look at the most popular pasta dish overall. The top-searched pasta dish in the U.S. is fettuccine Alfredo, topping the list across 14 states. Distant runners-up who were most Googled in five states were gnocchi and spaghetti.

The geographic spread of fettuccine Alfredo is hardly surprising. Winning by a landslide, this dish starts with a base of long (preferably fresh) fettuccine noodles elevated by two main ingredients — butter and parmesan cheese. When the grated cheese meets the melted butter and starchy pasta water, a rich sauce is created, coating the pasta in cheesy goodness.

If your mouth isn’t watering yet, maybe you should go make it yourself and see how much joy a bowl of warm fettuccine brings you. 

However you like your pasta — al dente or soft, covered in sauce or dripping in cheese — we hope you’ll be celebrating National Pasta Day under romantic candlelight, maybe sharing a strand of spaghetti. Nothing like pasta as a precursor to a proposal! Shop our collection of engagement rings for some not-so-cheesy inspiration.

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It would appear that you have no idea what Google Trends is measuring, state by state. It’s not volume or popularity of search between topics. It’s how different states have DISPROPORTIONATE search tendencies for a particular topic.

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