Bacon Carbonara Pasta with Brussels Sprouts

Bacon Carbonara Pasta with Brussels Sprouts

By: Irvin Lin

Traditional Roman-style Carbonara uses carryover heat from the piping hot pasta to cook eggs.

Serves 4


  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 30g Pecorino Romano cheese, grated
  • 50g Parmesan Reggiano cheese, grated
  • 450g rigatoni pasta
  • 280g bacon, chopped
  • 340g Brussels sprouts , trimmed, cut in half
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste


  1. Place the eggs, egg yolks, both cheeses, a heavy pinch of salt and a couple heavy pinches of black pepper in a medium bowl and stir with a fork until well blended.
  2. Fill a stockpot with water, about 3/4 full. Generously season water with salt (you want the water to taste like the ocean). Bring to a boil. Once boiling, place the rigatoni in the water and cook as directed on the box to al dente.
  3. While the water comes to a boil, line a heatproof plate or bowl with a paper towel. Place the bacon in a sauté pan and turn the heat to medium high. Cook until the bacon is crispy, but not burnt. Remove bacon from pan and place in the bowl or plate. Pour the bacon fat into a heatproof glass measuring cup, leaving about 1 tablespoon of fat left in the pan.
  4. Place the Brussels sprouts in the sauté pan, cut side down and cook 3 or 4 minutes on medium heat, until the side starts to turn deep brown. Stir and flip Brussels and cook an additional 3 to 4 minutes or until they are brown and tender. Add additional bacon fat to the pan if needed. Remove from heat, add back the bacon from the plate, and cover pan to keep warm.
  5. When the pasta is done, scoop out the pasta from the water with a slotted spoon and add it to the sauté pan with Brussels and bacon directly. Don’t worry if a little bit of water gets added into the pan. Do not have the sauté pan over heat, it should be off the stove.
  6. Once all the pasta is in the pan, slowly drizzle the egg and cheese sauce over the pasta, stirring constantly. The heat of the pasta should slowly cook the egg and cheese into a creamy sauce.
  7. If the pasta seems too dry once all the egg and cheese has been added, drizzle a little bit of reserved pasta water to thin it out. Taste and add additional salt and pepper as desired. Serve immediately with extra Parmesan cheese grated on top.
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