Go Back

Umberto's Classic Spaghetti Carbonara

Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Servings 2 people


  • 220-250 g spaghetti
  • 100 g pancetta or guanciale cut into lardons
  • 3 egg yolks I used Conestoga Eggs, which gave my carbonara a beautiful deep yellow colour!
  • 300 ml Pecorino Romano finely grated
  • 100 ml Parmigiano Reggiano finely grated
  • freshly cracked black pepper to taste


  • In a mixing bowl, add egg yolks, pecorino and parmigiano. Mix together until combined and the resulting mixture is like a soft dough, which will leave an imprint if pressed by the index finger. If the mixture is too wet, add more pecorino or parmigiano. If too dry, add more yolk.
  • Boil spaghetti in generously salted water. Stir occasionally to ensure pasta doesn't stick together.
  • While spaghetti is boiling, brown your pork in a large saucepan over medium to medium-high heat, stirring frequently. Don't over-crisp. Remove pancetta and set aside, reserving fat in the pan. Toast desired amount of freshly cracked black pepper in pan.
  • Deglaze pan with a ladle of pasta water and set on low until needed.
  • When the spaghetti has 2 minutes left to cook, turn heat back up under your saucepan with the rendered fat. Remove pasta from the water with tongs and add to the pan with the rendered fat. Add enough pasta water so that the noodles will continue cooking in about an inch of liquid in the pan (this helps the final sauce).
  • Add the pancetta to the sauce.
  • When the spaghetti is al dente and the pasta water and rendered fat have reduced to a tight starchy sauce, remove from the heat.
  • Off heat, carefully add the egg and cheese mixture into the pan. You can add in stages to ensure the egg doesn't scramble. As soon as you add a spoonful of the egg and cheese mixture, vigorously mix with tongs until the sauce is completely emulsified and the noodles are well-coated. This is the most important step. Reserve pasta water in order to adjust consistency of your sauce at this time, if needed.
  • Grate more pecorino or parmigiano over top. Serve and enjoy!