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5 from 5 votes

Spaghetti alla Carbonara

A super simple Spaghetti alla Carbonara recipe made with guanciale, eggs, and Pecorino Romano. This is a traditional Italian recipe so there's no cream involved yet it's still super creamy, rich and delicious.
Prep Time2 mins
Cook Time8 mins
Total Time10 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 741kcal
Author: Emily Kemp


  • 15 oz spaghetti (425g)
  • 3 large eggs free range
  • cup Pecorino Romano (30g)
  • 1 cup guanciale cut into cubes (150g)
  • 2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more for serving


  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the spaghetti, cook until al dente (around 7-8 minutes, check packet instructions).
  • Meanwhile, add the guanciale to a hot skillet and fry until brown and crispy then turn off the heat (do not drain the fat).
  • While the guanciale is frying add the eggs, pecorino and pepper to a bowl, whisk until well combined.
  • Once the pasta is ready, remove it with kitchen tongs to the skillet with the guanciale and toss so it's well combined in the fat.
  • Next, add the egg mixture whilst tossing the pasta to ensure the eggs don't scramble. Once the sauce turns glossy and creamy it's ready, add extra pecorino and pepper to serve.


  • Trim the guanciale - make sure to trim the thick skin layer off of the guanciale before chopping it up as it's tough and inedible, you'll also see this on blocks of pancetta if using.
  • Make sure your pan isn't too hot - Make sure the skillet or frying pan isn't super hot by turning it off a few minutes before adding the egg mixture. If the skillet is too hot the eggs will scramble!
  • Don't add salt to the sauce - guanciale is cured and tends to be very salty (taste a piece once it's browned) as is Pecorino Romano so you don't often need to add salt to the sauce. Adding salt to pasta water, however, is a must!
  • No Spaghetti? You can use any pasta you have on hand such as rigatoni.
  • Reserve pasta water! - If you are draining the pasta rather than removing it with tongs (try not to do this) make sure to reserve ¼ cup of pasta water, you may need it to loosen the sauce.
  • Serve immediately and do not freeze!


Calories: 741kcal | Carbohydrates: 80g | Protein: 25g | Fat: 35g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 168mg | Sodium: 495mg | Potassium: 296mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 237IU | Calcium: 134mg | Iron: 2mg