Delicious Spaghetti Carbonara Recipe

Spaghetti carbonara is a staple dish for all pasta lovers. If you're one of them, you should know how to make it perfectly. 
Delicious Spaghetti Carbonara Recipe

Last update: 04 February, 2020

Spaghetti carbonara is a typical Italian dish. It’s especially typical in the central region of Lazio, where the capital of Rome is located.

Although there are several hypothesis about how this dish got its name, the most common theory has to do with the black color of pepper. Black pepper has a similar color to that of charcoal, so when pepper is added to this pasta, it’s like little flecks of charcoal are being added.

There are tons of different recipes for spaghetti carbonara. However, the vast majority are very different from the traditional version. You may be surprised to hear that the original version doesn’t have cream, garlic or onions. The recipes that usually call for these ingredients are Spanish or American.

However, today we’re going to show you the traditional recipe and its main ingredient is bacon.

Spaghetti Carbonara

A meal made with spaghetti carbonara.

Ingredients (for 2 people)

  • Water
  • Cured pork
  • 2 medium eggs
  • Condiments: salt and black pepper
  • 1/2 pack of spaghetti (250 g)
  • Olive oil (as needed)
  • 1/2 cup of grated pecorino cheese (75 g)
  • 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese (75 g)
  • Optional: fresh parsley (to garnish)


  1. Lightly grease a pan with some olive oil and preheat it over medium heat.
  2. Put a pot of water on to boil with 1 or 2 teaspoons of salt (to taste).
  3. Once the water starts to boil, add the pasta. Let it cook until it’s al dente. Remember to stir the pasta every once in a while so it doesn’t stick to the pot.
  4. While it’s cooking, remove the fat from the cured pork and cut it into small cubes. 
  5. Fry the bacon in the pan for 2-3 minutes and then put it on a plate so you can use it later .
  6. Crack the eggs and separate the yolk from the egg white. For the carbonara, you’ll only need two beaten yolks.
  7. Then, mix them with the cheese until you have a dense mixture. It’s important that you don’t let this mixture sit, so keep stirring it occasionally.
  8. Drain the spaghetti, but save a bit of the broth that it was cooked in (about a quarter cup is enough).
  9. Add the bacon to the spaghetti and mix the ingredients together well.
  10. Next, pour a little broth over it as well as the egg and cheese mixture. Then, stir everything together again.
  11. Crush a little black pepper and sprinkle it on top. The more pepper you add to the dish, the more authentic the flavor will be.

The Spanish-American Spaghetti Carbonara

This is a twist on the traditional spaghetti carbonara.

Ingredients (for 2 people)

  • 1 tray of bacon (100 g)
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 4 tablespoons of cream (60 ml)
  • 1/2 pack of spaghetti (250 g)
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese (45 g)
  • Olive oil (as needed)
  • Condiments: salt, black pepper (freshly ground)


  1. Just like in the previous recipe, you should cook the spaghetti first. Make sure to stir it occasionally so it doesn’t stick to the pot.
  2. Cut the fat off the bacon and cut it into small cubes. Next, fry the cubes in a good amount of olive oil for about 2-3 minutes.
  3. Crack the eggs into a bowl and beat them with a fork until the white and the yolks are completely mixed together. Mix with the cream and then save it for later.
  4. Drain the spaghetti. When you put it onto a plate, you should immediately mix it with the beaten eggs, cream and Parmesan cheese. That way, the three ingredients will be well-mixed and you’ll have a compact dish.

Final Recommendations

If you don’t happen to have both types of cheese that we mentioned in the traditional recipe (Parmesan and pecorino), you can just use Parmesan or any other type of semi-cured cheese. That way, you won’t drastically change the flavor of the dish.

Also, there are some people who like to use the whole egg when making the sauce. Thus, it’s not mandatory to get rid of the egg whites. Each person will have their own technique according to his preferences.

However, the most important thing is to try to do without the dairy products in combination with the raw eggs. This will keep the dish from being too heavy on your stomach. Also, to avoid food poisoning, you should eat the dish the same day that you made it. 

Lastly, it’s important to remember that the traditional spaghetti carbonara is made with cured pork meat instead of bacon. However, bacon has become a very common ingredient in the American version. Finally, we don’t recommend using the slices of bacon that you can find at the supermarket. Even though they taste great, they don’t have the same density as the cubes you can cut up yourself at home.

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