Chef John's Spaghetti alla Carbonara

Chef John's Spaghetti alla Carbonara

80
Chef John 15828

"Spaghetti alla carbonara's creamy sauce is simply a thin egg and cheese custard, spiked with pork and black pepper. Try to find pancetta or guanciale (pork cheek cured like pancetta) for a really authentic taste!"

Ingredients 25 m {{adjustedServings}} servings 688 cals

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Nutrition

Amount per serving ({{servings}} total)

  • Calories:
  • 688 kcal
  • 34%
  • Fat:
  • 30.3 g
  • 47%
  • Carbs:
  • 66.1g
  • 21%
  • Protein:
  • 36.3 g
  • 73%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 220 mg
  • 73%
  • Sodium:
  • 984 mg
  • 39%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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Directions

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  1. Cook guanciale with olive oil and 1 teaspoon ground black pepper in a Dutch oven over medium-low heat until almost crisp, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to low.
  2. Whisk eggs, 3 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, 3 tablespoons Pecorino Romano cheese, and 1 teaspoon ground black pepper in a bowl. Set aside.
  3. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook spaghetti in the boiling water, stirring occasionally until cooked through but firm to the bite, 10 to 12 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the pasta water.
  4. Pour reserved pasta water and drained spaghetti into the bacon-pepper mixture; stir to combine.
  5. Slowly pour egg mixture into the pasta mixture; cook, stirring constantly until the egg mixture forms a thick sauce, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  6. Stir remaining 3 tablespoons Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and 3 tablespoons Pecorino Romano cheese into the pasta mixture and serve.
Tips & Tricks
Chef John's Farro with Wild Mushrooms

Delicious dish with farro, wild mushrooms and cheese.

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Watch how to make an amazing pasta sauce with chicken and sausage.

Footnotes

  • Cook's Note:
  • You can substitute pancetta for the guanciale. Or in a pinch, use bacon.
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Reviews 80

  1. 103 Ratings

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Susan J. Hass
8/17/2012

When I make carbonara, I always add about a cup of chopped yellow onion to the bacon as it fries. That combination is delicious. I also use chicken broth instead of pasta water, as it adds more flavor, and only add the cheese at the end, along with about 1/2 cup of chopped fresh parsley.

LatinaCook
5/5/2012

Surprisingly, I've never had spaghetti alla carbonara before. So, I don't have anything to compare this to. I know where I can buy pancetta at but it was too far away and I was feeling lazy. So, I used thick bacon. I, like chef John in the video, used whole wheat spaghetti. I enjoyed this simple dish even though I messed up a little and my cream curdled a bit. I didn't lower my heat as low as I should have and I didn't constantly stir. So, do as Chef John said!!! :o)

Sheila
4/30/2012

Very easy, simple ingredients, great to see the video also. I added a little diced onion with the bacon and seared cubed chicken tenderloins with the pasta; it tasted just like a nearby restaurant's carbonara. Wasn't too sure about adding the pasta water, but it was a great tip; made the sauce just the right consistency! Perfect amount for two people. Thanks for the recipe!