The easiest + Creamiest spaghetti carbonara

As someone who loves to cook and experiment with new recipes, nothing feels better than cooking without a recipe. Every home cook has at least one dish that they can whip up without having to double-check the ingredient list or cooking time. Of course, it goes without saying that cooking sans recipe takes practice and some trial & error but practice truly makes perfect. One of those no-recipe recipes for me is my spaghetti carbonara. An oldie but a goodie, I took inspiration from two recipes and blended them together to create my version.

Now before you say anything, I don’t claim this to be the most authentic carbonara but trust me when I say it’s simple to make, and will be your new go to!

creamy carbonara recipe


  • 2-3 large shallots, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves or more if you’re a garlic lover, minced
  • 6 oz guanciale or pancetta, optinal
  • 2 tbsp butter or olive oil
  • 2-3 egg yolks, if they’re small then use 3
  • 1/8-1/4 cup cream, 5% will work but a higher percentage is better
  • salt & pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan, plus more for serving
  • 6 oz spaghetti, linguine, bucatini, or any other long pasta
  • 1/2 cup reserved pasta water
  • zest of 1/2 lemon


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add pasta, stirring so it doesn’t stick to the bottom
  2. Mix egg yolks, cream, parmesan, salt and pepper in a large mug and set aside
  3. In a large saucepan, add butter/oil and heat to medium, add guanciale, if using, and cook until crispy
  4. Add in the shallots and cook until softened and lightly golden, about 5-7 minutes
  5. Add garlic, season with salt & pepper and cook until fragrant
  6. If your pasta isn’t ready when the shallots/garlic are, turn off the heat and let it sit to avoid burning
  7. Once pasta is done, turn the heat back on to about medium/high and add pasta into the shallots/garlic
  8. Add the egg yolk mixture and toss with tongs, adding small splashes of the reserved pasta water to loosen then take off the heat
  9. Add lemon zest and serve with more parmesan
  10. Enjoy!

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