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spaghetti carbonara

Spaghetti Carbonara

This recipe is an easy, simple way to make a homemade classic spaghetti carbonara. It has only 6 ingredients and is ready from start to finish in less than 30 minutes.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Diet Gluten Free
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 411kcal
Author Toni Dash


  • 1 pound (16 ounces) spaghetti pasta regular or gluten-free
  • 3 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups finely shredded parmesan cheese divided
  • 8 slices bacon or pancetta
  • 2 cloves garlic diced
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • chopped Italian Parsley optional for garnish


  • In a large pot, cook pasta according to the package instructions. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking water when the pasta is done.
    Strain with a colander or remove from the pot with tongs, allowing excess water to drip back into the cooking pot. It will be moved to the sauce pan.
    NOTE: do not drain the pasta until the sauce is ready to be made.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs and 1 cup parmesan cheese.
  • While the pasta cooks: In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the bacon (or pancetta) until it's cooked through but is not crisp. Reserve 1-2 tablespoons of the rendered bacon fat in the pan.
    Drain the remaining fat.
  • Remove the bacon from the pan and drain on paper towels. Chop into ½” pieces.
  • Add the garlic to the skillet with the bacon fat. Cook over medium heat until fragrant, about 30-60 seconds (do not overcook).
  • Remove the skillet from the heat. Add the hot pasta and bacon.
  • Pour in the egg and parmesan mixture and stir quickly toss until the pasta is coated adding splashes of the pasta cooking water as needed to reach a desired smooth consistency.
    NOTE: using tongs is great for this.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve hot garnished with the remaining ¼ cup of shredded parmesan cheese and chopped parsley (optional).


Tips & Notes
● Use tongs: when stirring the pasta in the skillet, use tongs to help gently move the spaghetti. A wooden spoon or spatula will also work, but tongs help keep the ingredients from sticking together.
● Using raw eggs: the sauce for spaghetti carbonara is made from raw eggs and parmesan cheese. The eggs will cook through from the residual heat of the cooked pasta. It's key to add the pasta hot; do not let it sit after cooking. Keep stirring the spaghetti when mixed with the eggs so that the eggs don’t overcook and cause clumping.
● Bacon or pancetta: traditionally, pasta carbonara uses pancetta. But bacon is a common substitute and used in this recipe because it’s more readily available. 


Calories: 411kcal | Carbohydrates: 58g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 108mg | Sodium: 376mg | Potassium: 226mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 298IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 278mg | Iron: 2mg