The Untold Truth Of TikTok's The Pasta Queen

As TikTok, Instagram, and other social media outlets become even more heavily-searched resources for recipes (and food inspiration), there have also been some great cooks that have showcased both their favorite dishes and techniques, as well as their personalities. Cue The Pasta Queen, who has racked up thousands of views on TikTok with her 1.9 million followers and has made a presence on Instagram, too, with more than 860,000 followers.

The Pasta Queen has become known for her takes on traditional classics (like her cacio e pepe, which is droolworthy), but also for her Italian-style cooking that has upped the ante on the popular cultural cuisine — we're specifically looking at her Devil's Kiss recipe on YouTube. And, of course, there's her humor as seen in the wine cookie video here that has big laughs all the way through, alongside her signature "ingredients" hair toss. She's even made guest appearances on daytime programs like "The Drew Barrymore Show" and other entertainment shows now that she's become a viral sensation. 

So, who is the woman behind The Pasta Queen? We found out everything there is to know about her.

Who is the woman behind The Pasta Queen?

Yes, this TokTok star and content creator has a real name, and it's not The Pasta Queen. Born Nadia Caterina Munno, according to Cheat Sheet, she grew up in Rome, Italy, which definitely helps to validate and pique interest in many of the recipes she develops and shares, knowing they are authentic. Even more interesting? There is more to her social media name than just a fun handle. It turns out that she has truly earned the title of The Pasta Queen based on her background. 

In a recent episode of the podcast, "Talking With My Mouth Full," The Pasta Queen revealed that her family actually has quite a long history with pasta. Her great-great- grandparents actually started a pasta factory in the south of Italy, around the Naples area, back in the 1800s. The factory, she says, stayed afloat until after World War II when they had to close it. 

Still today, she says, people call her family "the macaroni" when they see them because of their ties back to the business. 

"The pasta-making goes back five generations. Since the early 19th century, our family was known locally as 'Macaronis,' and they ran a small pasta factory, supplying fresh pasta to the larger distributors in Gragnano (which is where all the popular pasta brands operate from today). So you could say that pasta is in my DNA! Fun fact: DNA is shaped like fusilli pasta," she told Tube Filter.

Her career all started from a love of dinner parties

As a self-proclaimed "party animal," The Pasta Queen notes that she was inspired to start doing her now famous videos as she was always trying to host large, Italian dinner parties. At first, she started on YouTube when she moved to the US in 2015 (and now lives in Florida), according to Tube Filter, but found the ease of TikTok let her create more content and much quicker, and it grew from there.

"When lockdown hit, I went into [social media] with the intention of doing it," she said on the "Talking With My Mouth Full" podcast. "I had a lot of time on my hands. So, I was extremely happy to just be cooking in my kitchen, and me and my brother and my cousin just started filming." 

These early, DIY videos kicked off the beginning of her social media rise. Then, things got a bit more consistent as, unfortunately, the COVID-19 virus continued to get worse and things started to shut down — she had more time on her hands and more followers looking for inspiration for their own home cooking. Munno said that by the time the full lockdown happened in mid-March 2020, she began posting a video or some type of content at least once a day. She started showcasing all of her favorite recipes first and her audience just kept growing and growing — reaching 1 million followers in just 5 months, says Tube Filter.

"I love seeing the people who follow my accounts who appreciate my humor. I know many can relate, and am not afraid to show human flaws, make fun of myself, or release my inner, extreme Italian," she told the outlet.

The Pasta Queen is now a family affair

While The Pasta Queen herself is a focal point in so many of her social media stories and videos, there is also another fun person who sometimes steals the show — her Pasta Bro, Agostino. Yes, she says that Agostino is her real brother, and he definitely adds character to the videos through his expressions, recipe fails, and more. Additionally, Munno's father, Antonio, who carries the nickname "Pappa Pasta," has also made a few appearances in videos, too, and her fans seem to get very excited when he does. 

However, behind the scenes, her family is usually demanding that she finish shooting so that they can hurry up and eat what she's been cooking, according to Tube Filter. Apparently, they don't tire of pasta, either, as The Pasta Queen notes she goes through about 40 bags of noodles a week. Mama Mia, that's a lot of spaghetti. 

Her trademark hair flip is a thing of beauty

While on the "Talking With My Mouth Full" podcast, The Pasta Queen explains that she tailors her content towards which social media platform she is working on. TikTok, she says, is where she is the most dramatic. However, there is a shared, trademark trait amongst all of the videos that has caught the attention of adoring fans everywhere — Munno's famous hair flip whilst saying the word, "ingredients." 

The hair flip, says The Pasta Queen, started because she is a lover of dramatic telenovelas and plot twists. She furthers that the hair flip came about as a way to showcase that part of herself and add a little drama and flair to the videos she is making to keep audiences engaged. She "dreams in telenovelas," she told the podcast host. "Everything is just a little more dramatic." 

If you look close enough, you can see that Pasta Bro is also in the background many times, usually doing something snarky behind The Pasta Queen's back while she is flipping her hair, for even more comedy gold.

The Pasta Queen really loves pasta

It may sound obvious with a name like "The Pasta Queen," but this social media star really does love pasta. Munno recently revealed to Leite's Culinaria that her favorite recipes include her pasta with peas (seen on YouTube), even though it's a weird choice for her.

"I love that recipe a lot, and it was one of Kylie Jenner's favorites," she said. 

She also revealed that the classic lemon pasta on YouTube here that she makes is also one of her most popular recipes as well. But, she admits that the lemon pasta is actually an old recipe from Sophia Loren that she has put her own spin on with the addition of heavy cream. She says that, traditionally, the lemon pasta is made dairy-free. 

Loren, she adds, has been an idol to her. The Pasta Queen says that she loves the way Loren cooks and that many of the recipes the actress has shared are staples in her own family kitchen. And to be honest, we can see the same star-in-the-making quality with Munno.