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spaghetti carbonara in a blue plate.

Spaghetti Carbonara – the classic recipe

by admin

Spaghetti Carbonara is a timeless classic in Italian cuisine, known for its simplicity and rich flavors. Originating in the heart of Italy, this dish is a favorite of many and can be prepared with just a few ingredients. The key to an authentic Carbonara lies in the quality of the ingredients: fresh eggs, Italian cheeses, and traditional bacon.

The Authentic Italian Approach

In Italy, carbonara is traditionally made without cream. The combination of eggs, cheese and the starchy pasta water creates a naturally creamy texture. It is essential not to throw away the pasta water as it plays a crucial role in bringing the sauce together.

The Meat: Guanciale or Pancetta

Guanciale, an Italian cheek of bacon, is the traditional choice for carbonara. Alternatively, pancetta, another type of Italian bacon, can be used. Both options offer a delicious salty depth to the dish. The bacon is slowly cured and seasoned, which contributes to the unique taste of the Carbonara.

This recipe is for 4 people


  • 150 grams of pancetta or guanciale, cut into small pieces
  • 350 grams of spaghetti
  • 2 whole eggs plus 2 extra yolks
  • 50 grams freshly grated Parmesan cheese, and possibly extra for garnish
  • 50 grams of freshly grated Pecorino cheese
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preparation method:

  1. Start by frying the pancetta or guanciale in a pan until crispy. Make sure it doesn't get too dark.
  2. In the meantime, cook the spaghetti al dente according to the instructions on the package. Don't forget to salt the water.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and extra yolks. Add both cheeses and a generous amount of black pepper.
  4. Once the spaghetti is cooked, drain it but reserve about a cup of the cooking liquid.
  5. Return the spaghetti to the pan, add the fried pancetta or guanciale, and mix well.
  6. Turn off the heat. Add the cheese-egg mixture to the spaghetti and stir well.
  7. Gradually add the reserved cooking liquid to make the sauce smoother.

    Note: the residual heat of the pan should be enough to thicken the sauce without frying the eggs.
  8. Serve the pasta with an extra twist of black pepper and some extra Parmesan cheese, if desired.


  • Use real Parmesan and Pecorino cheese for the best flavor.
  • It is important not to overcook the eggs, so work quickly and at a low temperature.

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