Spaghetti alla Carbonara

Simple elements of egg, pecorino and guanciale come together to make a creamy Italian classic. Serves 4.


  • 400g dried spaghetti
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 200g guanciale, diced
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon salt flakes
  • 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 200g (1/2 cup) grated pecorino
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  1. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Drop in the spaghetti and stir to separate the stands, then cook until nicely al dente.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over low heat. Add the guanciale and gently fry until the fat has rendered and is crisp.
  3. Beat the egg yolks, salt and pepper until well combined, then stir in the pecorino.
  4. Using a spaghetti spoon, transfer the spaghetti straight into the pan, dragging a little of the cooking water with it, and toss with the guanciale to allow the flavours to combine. Reserve a few tablespoons of the pasta cooking water.
  5. Take the pan off the heat, add the egg and cheese mixture and stir through very quickly to avoid overcooking the egg, adding a little of the reserved pasta water if it looks a little dry. Add a little more cheese to bring the temperature down and amalgamate. The residual heat of the pan, spaghetti and cooking water will gently cook the egg, but keep it nice and creamy.
  6. Grind over a bit more pepper if you like and serve straight away.

Source: Cook Like an Italian

How we Eat It

The golden rule: straight away!

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