Cesare Casella's Spaghetti Carbonara

Cesare Casella's Spaghetti Carbonara
At Salumeria Rosi, Cesare Casella demonstrates his secret Carbonara recipe.

Erika Keller

At Salumeria Rosi, Cesare Casella demonstrates his secret Carbonara recipe.

Classic spaghetti carbonara: spaghetti, eggs, pecorino Romano, guanciale, and black pepper. Sounds simple enough, right? According to Salumeria Rosi chef Cesare Casella, it is. His secret to perfect carbonara? "Simplicity," he said. "You’ve got to respect the traditional recipe and good ingredients — organic eggs, the best guanciale." That said, he doesn’t have a problem with including cream ("cream lets you make a mistake") or blending meats and cheeses for more complex flavors. Below, the master shares his recipe for this iconic Roman dish.


Combine the pancetta and guanciale with garlic and oil in a skillet over medium heat and cook, adding the red pepper flakes about one minute into cooking. You want to render the fat without crisping the meat, about three to five minutes. Remove skillet from heat and set aside the meat.

Cook the spaghetti in a large pot of boiling salted water until slightly undercooked.

The pasta can be now added directly to the pan with the bacon. Toss over medium-high heat. Add enough pasta water to the pan to bathe the pasta. Simmer until the pasta is al dente and the water is reduced. Discard the garlic.

Whisk together the cream and black pepper in a large bowl.

Add the cream to the spaghetti-bacon mixture. Toss well to combine and then let the cream reduce.

Add the grated Grana Padano and pecorino Romano and toss until it melts.

Finish the dish with the egg yolks and chopped parsley. Toss over heat for 30 to 60 seconds to warm. Be careful not to overcook or the eggs will scramble. Taste and season. Garnish with extra grated cheese and pepper to taste.


Calories per serving:

1,528 calories

Dietary restrictions:

Peanut Free, Tree Nut Free, Soy Free, Fish Free, Shellfish Free, Alcohol Free, No Sugar Added

Daily value:



  • Fat 108g 166%
  • Carbs 92g 31%
  • Saturated 43g 214%
  • Fiber 4g 15%
  • Trans 0g
  • Sugars 7g
  • Monounsaturated 49g
  • Polyunsaturated 11g
  • Protein 46g 91%
  • Cholesterol 386mg 129%
  • Sodium 1,240mg 52%
  • Calcium 628mg 63%
  • Magnesium 98mg 25%
  • Potassium 568mg 16%
  • Iron 3mg 16%
  • Zinc 4mg 30%
  • Phosphorus 786mg 112%
  • Vitamin A 475µg 53%
  • Vitamin C 2mg 4%
  • Thiamin (B1) 0mg 28%
  • Riboflavin (B2) 0mg 28%
  • Niacin (B3) 6mg 28%
  • Vitamin B6 1mg 29%
  • Folic Acid (B9) 52µg 13%
  • Vitamin B12 1µg 24%
  • Vitamin D 2µg 1%
  • Vitamin E 6mg 29%
  • Vitamin K 20µg 26%
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