New This Month

Creamy Spaghetti Carbonara


This rich Italian favorite is flavored with a sauce of pancetta, cream, eggs, and Parmesan.

  • Servings: 6

Source: Martha Stewart Living, September 2000


  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 10 ounces pancetta, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • 1 cup heavy cream, plus more if needed
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 2 cups grated (about 5 ounces) Parmesan cheese, plus more for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  1. Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil and pancetta to skillet, and cook until the pancetta is browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove skillet from heat, and keep warm.

  2. Cook spaghetti in boiling water until al dente, about 8 minutes. While spaghetti is cooking, whisk cream, egg yolks, Parmesan, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl until combined. Drain pasta, and return to saucepan. Immediately stir in egg-and-cheese mixture until well combined. Add warm pancetta and fat from pan. Toss well. Thin sauce with additional cream, if necessary. Serve immediately, garnished with grated Parmesan cheese.

Cook's Notes

Raw eggs should not be used in food prepared for pregnant women, babies, young children, the elderly, or anyone whose health is compromised.

Reviews Add a comment

  • Drupaler
    19 JAN, 2011
    You can leave out cream, for a lighter dish. And use a little milk as needed, if it looks dry.
  • AngelinaAurora
    17 AUG, 2010
    This is my 'go to' Carbonara recipe. Simple to prepare and just a few ingredients. Throw in some thawed frozen spinach, cooked broccoli or rapini to get some veggies in. If you follow the directions you won't be disappointed!
  • danielviger72
    8 MAR, 2010
    This was fantastic start to finish.. just follow the directions and you'll have no problem what so ever!! I served this at a dinner party!! What a huge Hit! Thanks Martha!!!! dan viger
  • roxy_surfing21
    10 FEB, 2009
    A little disappointed... This recipes ingredients are off. You should us six eggs and a 1/2 of cup of cream and 1/2 cup of parm, not two cups. This is why the food was ruined.
  • roxy_surfing21
    10 FEB, 2009
    The parm is very clumpy. How do you avoid that? any suggestions....
  • nanebra
    21 JAN, 2009
    my family loves this recipe, but I make it a little differently. I use bacon instead of pancetta, and I use 3 whole eggs...however, I follow the same directions. Italian food is great, and here in Brazil the typical day to eat pasta is on Thursday and Sunday....
  • Faelyn
    7 JAN, 2009
    Use 3 egg yolks, 1 whole egg and no heavy cream, to respect the traditional italian recipe. With mushrooms or tomato, it's tomato/mushrooms pasta, not carbonara.
  • Tryingsomethingnew
    6 NOV, 2008
    This was great I used less salt, and a less fatty form of pancetta. I think the addition of garlic would kick it up a notch.
  • roselleyumang
    16 JUL, 2008
    my husband
  • Gamie
    17 APR, 2008
    Sometimes I add chopped fresh plum tomatoes or mushrooms plus garlic to mine for a different taste.When I have no pancetta I use bacon.