There are not many things my kids love more than pasta. This easy Pancetta Pea Pasta is a simple recipe that everyone really enjoys and frequently requests for me to make.
Wondering what to make for dinner tonight? Give this easy Pancetta Pea Pasta recipe a try and thank me later! It’s a cheat day favorite for me and I love it because unlike other classic pasta and peas recipes that are creamy this recipe has a light lemony garlic sauce.
Similar: Spicy One Pot Sausage Pasta
For those eating low carb, you can swap out the pasta and use your favorite zoodles!
This easy to make recipe takes less than 30 minutes to make! I like to make large batches and will sometimes use them for dinner the following night.
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What is Pancetta?
Pancetta is an Italian bacon that is cured with salt and not smoked like bacon.
Can it be substituted?
You can choose to use bacon (boiling the bacon first will reduce the smoky taste), prosciutto or even Canadian bacon. For a flavorful meatless version, you can also use mushroom bacon (easy recipe here) or even olives.
What to serve with the pasta and peas?
Keep it simple and serve it with a side salad or this creamy avocado and cucumber salad.
How To Make Pancetta Pasta & Peas
Prep: 10 min
Cook: 20 min
Makes: 6 servings
3/4 Lb. spaghetti (thin)
4-oz bacon (cut into pieces)
1 shallot (thinly sliced)
2 C frozen peas (thawed)
8 large garlic cloves (minced)
2 tsp crushed red pepper (divided)
1 bunch parsley (chopped)
1 lemon (zested and juiced)
Parmesan cheese (grated)
Large cast-iron skillet
Line a large plate with paper towels.
Add both salt and a slight amount of olive oil to the pot of water.
Bring the water to a boil.
Cook the pasta following the package instructions.
Before draining the water from the pot scoop out about 1 cup of the water. Set it aside for later.
Drain the water from the pasta.
Heat the skillet over medium-high heat. Carefully add the bacon pieces and fry until fully cooked and are brown.
Toss the bacon pieces often. Take the bacon pieces out of the skillet placing it on the lined plate. Take out about 2 teaspoons of the bacon grease before disposing of it.
Set aside the 2 teaspoons of bacon fat to use later.
Replace the skillet on the stovetop set on medium heat. Add the bacon grease and about 4 tablespoons of the olive oil. Heat the skillet with the oil and bacon fat until it has a shimmer but not smoking.
Slowly add the shallots, peas, salt, pepper, and 1 teaspoon of the crushed red pepper. Increase the stovetop heat to a medium-high, cooking for about 5 minutes. Toss often. Add garlic and parsley, cooking for another 3 minutes. (Check to make sure that the peas are fully cooked.)
Return the bacon pieces to the skillet. Add the cooked pasta and 3/4 cup of the pasta water. Add in the rest of the crushed red pepper, lemon zest, and juice. Toss to combine.
Add the grated cheese to the pasta. Start out with 3-4 tablespoons. Add more if you desire. Taste test for salt and pepper.
Transfer to a serving plate. (Or individual serving bowls)
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