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Cacio e Pepe

If you need a simple pasta dish for the holidays, or anytime, this one satisfies everyone, even the picky eaters! Perfect at the last minute, because you most likely have all this in your pantry and fridge.

You will need:

1 pound dried bucatini or thick pasta

1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for garnish

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese, plus more for garnish

Kosher salt, to taste

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the bucatini and cook until just al dente, 8 to 9 minutes. Drain, reserving 1¼ cup of pasta water.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, toast the ground pepper over medium heat until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add 4 tablespoons of the butter and the olive oil, and cook until the butter has melted, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add the drained pasta, 1 cup of the reserved pasta water, the grated Parmesan and Pecorino Romano. Toss well to coat the pasta well and season with salt, ensuring smooth sauce instead of clumps of cheese. Add the remaining ¼ cup of reserved pasta water and tablespoon of butter, tossing to incorporate.

Transfer to a platter and garnish with ground pepper and Pecorino Romano cheese and serve.

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