Spaghetti Carbonara

October 11, 2013 by Ali

Spaghetti Carbonara Recipe |

This delicious spaghetti carbonara recipe is one of my all-time favorite of favorite of favorites. It was actually one of the very first recipes I ever shared on Gimme Some Oven. But I’m pretty sure that none of you ever saw it because the pictures were terrible. Like, horribly-over-lit, sitting-on-a-neon-blue-backdrop, smothered-in-way-too-much-Parmesan-cheese, not-appetizing-AT-ALL ter-ri-ble.

I’ve learned that this is a common dilemma amongst food bloggers. When we launch our blogs, we start by sharing tons of our best recipes right off the bat. But that tends to be when our photography skills are (ahem) not the finest. Years later, the recipes may still be in our rotation of favorites, but the photos?! Yeeeesh.

So I’ve decided to start “making over” a few of my favorite old blog recipes, starting with this classic and crazy-good Spaghetti Carbonara.

Spaghetti Carbonara Recipe |

For any of you unfamiliar with Pasta Carbonara, my friends all fondly call it the “eggs and bacon pasta”. You basically just stir a few whisked eggs into the pasta as soon as it is cooked and drained, and the heat of the pasta will cook the eggs until they make a creamy sauce coating the pasta. There’s also a little onion in there, a little milk, lots of Parmesan, and LOTS of bacon. And it is crazy good.
Spaghetti Carbonara Recipe |

I actually have been making the dish since I first began cooking in college. A group of us had been invited to a dinner where my professor’s wife served up steaming bowls of this mysteriously-named pasta, and I instantly fell in love and begged for the recipe and have been making it ever since.

For many years, I made the pasta a little healthier with turkey bacon, which I still love to use. But when I’m going for pure comfort food, real bacon is definitely the way to go. Either way, this dish is absolutely full of great flavor, and can literally be on the table from start to finish in less than 30 minutes. Perfect.

Cheers to recipe makeovers!

Spaghetti Carbonara Recipe |

Spaghetti Carbonara

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 6-8 cups


  • 1 lb. spaghetti
  • 1/2 large onion, diced (about 1 cup)
  • 1/2 lb. bacon (regular or turkey bacon), diced
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup parmesan (or more)
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • olive oil


Bring a big pot of salted water to a boil on the stove. (Use about 2 Tbsp. salt - this is the secret to flavorful Italian pasta!)

While waiting for the water to boil, heat 1 Tbsp. of oil in a large skillet over medium-heat. Add the turkey bacon and cook until it is nearly crispy, stirring every few minutes. (If using real bacon, you will not need to add oil initially, and you may actually need to drain some grease before the next step.) Then add the diced onion to the skillet, and continue cooking until the bacon is crispy and the onion is translucent.

In a separate small bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, parmesan and black pepper until well-blended. Set aside.

Once the pasta water is ready, add the spaghetti and cook according to package instructions until it is al dente. (Usually about 9-11 minutes.)

When the pasta is ready, carefully and quickly drain out the pasta water, and return the pasta to the hot pot immediately. Then while stirring the pasta with one hand, use the other to pour the egg mixture into the pasta and continue to toss until the egg mixture is cooked into the pasta. (You may see a few tiny clumps, but in general, the eggs will just coat the individual pieces almost like a sauce.) Then add in the bacon and eggs mixture and toss until mixed.

Feel free to garnish with extra parmesan and/or chopped fresh parsley. Serve immediately.

Recipe from my friend, Joni.

(c) 2013 Gimme Some Oven. All rights reserved.

Spaghetti Carbonara Recipe |

filed in Egg, Entrees, Pastas

About Ali

Ali Ebright is a freelance recipe developer and food writer/photographer, and blogs at Gimme Some Oven and Gimme Some Life. She also loves all things music, traveling near and far, actually making things from Pinterest, cozying up with a good book and her sweet pup, Henry, and spending time with a wonderful group of friends. Come say hello and follow Ali on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ & Instagram.

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39 thoughts on “Spaghetti Carbonara

  1. This has always been one of my go-to recipes. My landlord in Sicily who spoke no English showed me how to make this when I was newly married. Leftovers can be frozen with good results. It works well with chopped ham as well.

    - Laurie

  2. We made this tonight and OH MY! It was delicious!! I used brown rice spaghetti from Trader Joe’s and it was excellent with this. This is going into my “bag of tricks” for yummy comfort food during the LONG winter. Thanks!

    - Missy

  3. Love this recipe! This is what you whip up at midnight and have a picnic in bed!

    - Robin Feltner

  4. My favorite too forever!! I like spicy food so I just add a little bit of hot peppers cut very small and add them to the bacon skillet when the onion is almost translucent!!!

    - Mimi Shelburne

  5. looks wonderful–think you could sub egg beaters for the eggs to cut the cholesterol

    - cathy

  6. We had this dish for dinner last night. Mine had quite a few clumps in the sauce but it was still delicious. We called it “Bacon and scrambled eggs with pasta”. Will need to try and perfect my technique. Thanks for sharing!

    - Rachel

  7. I made the carbonara last night. 1 lb pasta too much for other ingredients. the pasta had wonderful taste, but too dry-next time I make it will add less pasta and 1/4 th cup more ream or milk

    - sophie

  8. I have the same problem– some of my older posts have horrible photography, I was much happier with the photographs on posts from a whole year later, and even looking back on those, there are some I’d like to re-do… (I didn’t think about how that probably tends to happen with our favorite recipes, since we want to share them first, though!)

    I’m curious about your strategy with this, though– do you put better photos into your older posts, and then alert your readers to the change (I’ve done that with one post…) Or do you delete the older post and just totally replace it with a better version of the same recipe? (Or leave the older one up for comparison?)

    By the way, this pasta looks lovely! (And I don’t even eat bacon… but these photographs!) : )

    - Allison (Spontaneous Tomato)

  9. Your carbonara looks delicious. The recipe looks so quick and easy, I will definitely be giving it a try soon!

    - KayleneP @ The Links Site

  10. spaghetti carbonara is one of our favorites! Beautiful photos!

    - Angie | Big Bear's Wife

  11. If I were to halve this recipe, should I go with two eggs or three? Looking forward to trying this sooner rather than later!

    - Sadye

  12. Looks great! How many eggs would you suggest to half since it is just the two of us? Thanks!

    - Pattie

  13. Had this for lunch today! Carbonara is my absolute favourite!

    - Beth Young

  14. Hi! This looks so good! My son doesn’t really care for Parmesan cheese. Can I substitute it with mozzarella or cheddar cheese instead? Thanks!

    - Michelle

  15. I love this Ali! I have been doing the same little by little. Carbonara has always been a favorite of mine, but I’ve never used onion in it…can’t wait to try yours!

    - Julie Blanner

  16. So stunning, as always! I love this for a quick meal.

    - DessertForTwo

  17. Seriously, I am forever in debt to whoever decided that it would be a good idea to put eggs and bacon in a pasta. I adore carbonara and yours looks fantastic!

    - Des

  18. I fell in love with Spaghetti Carbonara when I was in Rome earlier this year. It’s one of the most delicious things on the planet- and this looks perfect! Your pictures have been to die for lately Ali!!

    - Audra | The Baker Chick

  19. Carbonara is one of my favorite things ever. Ever. And isn’t it fun to go and remake some of those early recipes? I’ve been doing that for awhile and have rediscovered some gems!

    - Deborah

  20. These photographs are gorgeous, as well as the pasta. It’s funny I never seem to have spaghetti carbonara in the US, I always end up having it when I visit England, need to change that! This looks SOOO good!

    - Elizabeth @ Confessions of a Baking Queen

  21. You have no idea how happy I am you posted this recipe! I use to have this all the time in Spain with my Spanish family but I had no clue how to make it. I can’t wait to try this for me and my husband now!

    xoxo, K
    Relatively Offbeat

    - Katelyn

  22. Simply and awesome! I love all that bacon!

    - Tieghan

  23. One of my all-time favorites! Love the lots of bacon!

    - Gaby

  24. I’ve thought about remaking some early “dishes” Looking back gives me the heebie jeebies!! Your remake of this classic is 100% successful :)

    - Gerry @ Foodness Gracious

  25. It looks amazing! The original recipe calls for pancetta, not bacon…the flavors are very different ;)

    Or at least that’s how we make it in Rome ^__^

    - Cristina

  26. This looks delicious! Wish I had it in front of me right now!

    - Amanda

  27. Great pasta dish, Ali! Love it! :)

    - Sommer @ ASpicyPerspective

  28. I was just thinking about going back and redoing some of my early stuff! The recipes are my fave but the pics are sooooo lacking! I love this pasta dish. It is definitely a major comfort food in my house!

    - Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking

  29. Some of my photos are really really really bad looking and I started to recreate those recipes as well. My husband is always complaining that we usually have a recipe once and then move on but we never make it again.
    Spaghetti carbonara is one of my favorite pasta dishes.

    - Meagan @ A Zesty Bite

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  31. A friend recommended me to read this website, brill post, interesting read… keep up the cool work!

    - Kiley Chasteen

  32. Another variation is to use diced ham (or prosciutto).

    - vicki

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  34. Yum! I must give this a try some time- it’s so simple!

    - Von

  35. Hi
    I love your website! The recipes look GREAT! I can’t wait to try them.
    Thanks for doing this.

    - Sue