Fettuccine alla Carbonara

by Shawnda on May 9, 2010

in Carbonara,Pasta, Rice, and Grains

Fettucine alla Carbonara

Last month’s Saveur contained a feature on classic Roman dishes. One of the recipes featured, Spaghetti alla Carbonara, is one of our favorites (with fettuccine or linguine noodles). I make it every other week. It’s a quickie dinners: cooked pasta, cheese, crispy pancetta, and an egg swirled around with some pasta water.

Saveur’s recipe is different than our version: it called for extra egg yolks, way more pepper than I usually use, and the pepper is cooked with the pancetta to flavor the oil. I’ll try anything once!

Fettucine alla Carbonara

Paired with some fresh pasta, this version was down right decadent. The sauce was fantastically peppery, rich, and so creamy. We both went back for seconds. It easily replaces the old recipe as our new go-to carbonara recipe.

Fettuccine alla Carbonara

A peppery, flavorful pasta carbonara, without the heavy cream!


  • 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 oz bacon or pancetta, diced
  • 1 1/2 tsp freshly cracked black pepper, plus more to taste
  • 1 3/4 cups Parmesan, divided
  • 1 egg
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 lb fresh fettuccine
  • salt to taste


  1. Heat oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Cook pancetta until almost crispy. Add black pepper and stir, cooking two more minutes.
  3. Scrape the pancetta and oil into a large bowl and let cool slightly.
  4. Whisk egg, yolks, and 1 1/2 cups Parmesan together. Pour over pancetta and stir vigorously, mixing thoroughly.
  5. Cook fettuccine and drain, reserving 1 cup of cooking water.
  6. Add pasta to the bowl and toss with the pancetta mixture, adding a few splashes of pasta water to make a creamy sauce.
  7. Salt and pepper to taste and let sit for 5 minutes.
  8. Toss again and serve topped with remaining Parmesan.


Yields: 4 servings

Adapted from Saveur

Estimated time: 30 minutes


{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Joanne May 9, 2010 at 11:42 am

I love carbonara! This seems like an extra-delicious version. I love that it uses pancetta instead of bacon.


2 Jade May 9, 2010 at 3:52 pm

This looks simple yet so flavorful. I will definetly try it!


3 Memoria May 9, 2010 at 5:25 pm

This is a good recipe. You’re supposed to cook the pepper with the guanciale or pancetta; it intensifies the flavor, as you have found out.

I could tell that was fresh pasta. I have been wanting to make more fresh pasta at home, but I end up making much more than I need for one person. I get lazy about rolling out more dough (even through the roller!) and drying the pasta… I’m bad about drying the pasta, too.

Lovely dish and photos. Much better than the way my Chicken carbonara looked haha.


4 emiglia May 9, 2010 at 7:12 pm

Sold! The nuances of a simple dish like carbonara can take forever to get right… I’m always up for a new recipe, especially one with such a good review!


5 Cara May 10, 2010 at 6:28 pm

Sounds delicious – I just discovered I like carbonara!


6 Katie May 11, 2010 at 5:23 am

I love carbonara and this recipe sounds absolutely delicious – I’ve got to try it.


7 Dani May 12, 2010 at 9:57 am

I’ve never had carbonara, but this sounds awesome! It’s definitely on my To Try list now!


8 Sharon May 12, 2010 at 7:33 pm

This looks so good I am soooo hungry!! Love carbonara!!


9 Emi May 19, 2010 at 5:26 pm

This looks like a great carbonara, much better than the last recipe I tried!


10 Amy June 20, 2010 at 2:52 pm

Hi! I just made this and it is SO SO good and rich and peppery and perfect! I blogged about it here:



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