Traditional Spaghetti alla Carbonara


Spaghetti is the time-honored partner for carbonara sauce, a Roman favorite made from pancetta, garlic, Parmesan and Romano cheese, lots of freshly ground black pepper, and eggs—which are tossed, uncooked, into the hot pasta just before serving.


  • Coarse salt

  • 1 pound spaghetti

  • 4 ounces pancetta, coarsely chopped

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

  • 4 large eggs

  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

  • ¼ cup freshly grated pecorino

  • Romano cheese

  • Freshly ground pepper


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil; add salt. Add pasta; cook until al dente. Drain. While pasta cooks, cook pancetta in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, 6 to 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer pancetta to a bowl.

  2. Reduce heat to medium-low. Add oil to skillet; heat until hot but not smoking. Add garlic; cook until golden, about 3 minutes. Lightly beat eggs in a large serving bowl; set aside. Add pasta to skillet; toss. Transfer to eggs. Add cheeses and pancetta; toss. Season with pepper.


Cook's Notes

The eggs in this dish are not fully cooked; it should not be prepared for pregnant women, babies, young children, the elderly, or anyone whose health is compromised.

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