Spaghetti Aglio e Olio is a classic Italian dish known for its simplicity and ease. Fresh garlic is sauteed in olive oil, which is then tossed with spaghetti, red pepper flakes, and parsley.
Spaghetti Aglio e Olio is an Italian classic. What I love about this recipe is that it’s meant to be made when you have nothing else in the pantry, or are pressed for time. It’s likely that you already have the 5 ingredients you need on hand. On top of that, it’s ready in less than 20 minutes. It can be served alone or with any protein you have on hand.
I don’t like to mess with a classic, so this recipe is prepared the traditional way. The most basic version of this recipe contains only spaghetti, olive oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes. I also like to add parsley, which adds color and fresh flavor.
A more American version also adds Parmesan cheese and/or breadcrumbs. If you’d like to amp up this recipe, give either of these ingredients a try. To add parmesan cheese, simply sprinkle a tablespoon on top of each dish before serving. If you’d like to add bread crumbs, add 1/2 cup to the sauteing garlic for 3 to 4 minutes and allow them to brown.
I like to serve my spaghetti aglio e olio with sauteed shrimp, grilled chicken, or crumbled bacon. This dish is so versatile, you can add just about anything you have on hand. I’m thrilled to have stumbled upon this classic recipe and have added it to my arsenal. When you have nothing on hand and need a last minute meal, spaghetti aglio e olio will save the day.
Spaghetti Aglio e Olio
- 1 pound spaghetti
- 1/2 cup olive oil divided
- 8 cloves garlic slivered
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 cup pasta water
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley chopped
- In a large stock pot, bring water to a boil. Boil spaghetti according to package directions, until almost al dente (pasta will finish cooking in a later step). Important - reserve 1 cup of your pasta water before draining pasta. Set aside.
- In a saute pan over medium heat, add 6 tablespoons of olive oil and slivered garlic. Saute for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until garlic is lightly golden. Add red pepper flakes and cook for an additional 30 seconds.
- Add spaghetti and reserved pasta water. Stir and cook until sauce becomes creamy and coats pasta, about 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat, add 2 more tablespoons of olive oil and stir to combine. If needed, allow to set for 5 minutes to allow sauce to thicken.
- Toss with chopped parsley. Serve and enjoy.