It sounds like just a fancy term for making sure your noodles are done. “Al dente” literally means “to the tooth” in Italian. That means that well-cooked pasta must have a soft bite, a “snap” that you can feel when you chew. Why?
The taste of the pasta comes out so much better in al dente pasta!
Al dente pasta is firmer for better texture, mouth feel and taste. Eating your noodles al dente is actually healthier for you as well.
Hot water breaks down the molecule bonds in starches – that’s how it turns dry pasta into cooked pasta. The longer the noodles are cooked, the more the molecules are broken down, and the faster your body can convert those carbs into fuel. That fast breakdown causes blood sugar levels to rise suddenly and then crash only a few hours later, leaving you tired and hungry again.
When pasta is cooked al dente, it takes longer for your body to break down those carbs, which keeps your blood sugar levels more stable and your body more sufficiently fuelled and filled. The result? You’re less likely to overeat or to eat unhealthy snacks after your meal.
Keeping those blood sugar levels stable can prevent weight gain and type two diabetes.
Don't take our word for it. Here are some other people that are singing the praises of "al dente" pasta: