Vegetarian Pasta Carbonara with Spinach

This egg-free version Carbonara Pasta uses a combination of butter and starchy pasta cooking water to give the sauce body. It seems lots of spinach/palak but it wilts right into the pasta. Very easy recipe with very few ingredients. Most importantly, don’t be shy with the black pepper and crushed pepper: It adds a necessary dose of spice and heat.

More Italian Recipes:

How to make Vegetarian Carbonara

PREP TIME: 5 MINS  COOK TIME: 15 MINS  TOTAL TIME: 20 MINS  COURSE: MAIN COURSE  CUISINE: ITALIAN SERVINGS : 4

Ingredients

  • spaghetti or linguini pasta – 1 lb pack
  • oil – 3 tbsp.
  • garlic – 1-2 tbsp.
  • onion – 1 cup, finely chopped
  • butter – 2 tbsp.
  • spinach/palak – 5-6 cups chopped or 1 lb
  • crushed red pepper / red-pepper flakes – 1 tsp (adjust)
  • black pepper – 1 tsp/to taste
  • salt
  • cheese – 1 cup
  • lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Cook the pasta in a pot of salted boiling water until al dente (cook 1 min less). Reserve 2 cups cooking water and drain the pasta. 
  2. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until light golden, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add cooked pasta and reserved cooking water to the pot and heat over low. Adding water helps the butter to coat pasta nicely and makes creamy.
  4. Add the butter, stirring constantly, until most of the liquid is absorbed and sauce is slightly thickened, 3 to 5 minutes.
  5. Add the spinach, season with salt, plenty of pepper and red-pepper flakes and stir until spinach is wilted.
  6. Stir in the Parmesan or mozzarella cheese and lemon juice; season with salt and pepper.
  7. Garnish with more cheese, salt and pepper, if desired. Serve hot.

Tips

  1. Don’t forget to reserve 2 cups of salted boiling pasta water.
  2. You may also use sun dried tomatoes.
  3. You can also add vegetables.

Step by step photo instructions

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