Amatriciana recipe: how to make pasta all’amatriciana at home

by marta
spaghetti amatriciana

Easy to follow, delicious, authentic amatriciana recipe: make perfect pasta all’Amatriciana at home with this easy recipe from Rome.

Pasta all”amatriciana is one of the most traditional and loved pasta dishes in Rome.

Named after the small town of Amatrice, just outside of the capital, this pasta dish shares its key ingredients with other classic dishes of the Rome area such as carbonara, cacio e pepe and gricia however, it lifts them with the help of tomato-based sauce and a little bit of heat from a chilly.

This is the original amatriciana recipe and step by step intruction to make this classic Rome food at home.

How to make pasta all’amatriciana at home: perfect Amatriciana recipe

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Amatriciana plate with text: perfect Amatriciana pasta recipe

Amatriciana ingredients

  • 150gr guanciale
  • 350gr spaghetti (or bucatini)
  • 1 chilly
  • 400gr pomodori pelati (peeled tomatoes/ canned tomatoes)
  • 75 gr pecorino romano cheese
  • 150gr guanciale, in 0.5 cm strips
  • White wine (dry)
  • Olive oil, salt
  • Gear: large pasta pot, non-stick pan

How to make Amatriciana: method

  • In a non-stick pan, add your olive oil, heat up gently, then add guanciale and the chilly.
  • Leave to cook until the fat is translucid and the guanciale crisp
  • Degrease with white wine, turn the heat slightly up and let evaporate
  • Take away the guanciale and leave it to rest off the heat
  • Add peeled whole tomatoes to your pan and let cook
  • In the meanwhile, cook the spaghetti in a generous amount of salted boiling water.
  • Just before draining your spaghetti, get rid of the chilly peppers, add guanciale back to the pan and throw in the spaghetti
  • Coat well adding a tiny bit of the pasta cooking sauce if needed
  • Add pecorino, serve hot.

Most common mistakes when making Amatriciana

TAs you can see from the process above, amatriciana is easy to make so the mistakes usually made have to do with the ingredients chosen, rather than the cooking process.

The most common amatriciana mistakes are:

Using onion – there is no onion in this dish! Like there is no cream in carbonara, this is maybe the biggest food ‘sin’ when making Amatriciana. now that you know, it is also an easy one to avoid!

Using garlic – there is no garlic in amatriciana either.

While it is tempting to think that garlic is hardly out of place in an Italian dish, this would be misleading for amatriciana. Rome pasta dished do not make use of garlic and do not need it: try this recipe without changing anything and I am sure you will agree there is nothing lacking in terms of taste!

Using pancetta – Amatriciana uses guanciale, which is pork cut from the cheek of the pig and that has a delicate, distinctive taste.

Since it is often hard to find abroad, it is common to use pancetta instead.

While this may be inevitable should guanciale not be available, this will change the taste of Amatriciana and will give a different result from what you may have tasted in Rome

Using short pasta – some recipes tolerate different pasta shaped but amatriciana wants long pasta. Spaghetti or bucatini are ideal.

Cooking the pasta too long – this is true for all pasta dished but a rule worth repeating: you need your pasta al dente. As well as keeping a better taste and a more pleasant texture, pasta al dente is easier to digest than the goo you get if you overcook it.

Adding spices – the recipe for amatriciana calls for very few ingredients and you may feel tempted to add something extra to make it ‘better’.

However, the simplicity of the dish is its strength: do not be tempted to add spices or herbs like oregano or others: they do not belong in this dish and the dish definitely does not need them.

What you need to know about amatriciana: fun fact

Ask anyone what males Amatriciana unique and different from other pasta dishes in Rome and everyone will shout: the tomato sauce!

Indeed, amatriciana differs from carbonara, gricia and cacio e pepe because of the presence of the tomatoes however, tomatoes didn’t belong in the original recipe!

Food experts tell us that the addition of tomatoes only happened in 1790, when chef F. Leonardi first mentions it in the book “Modern Apicio’

Where to taste amatriciana in Rome

If you are lucky enough to find yourself in Rome, make sure you taste Amatriciana in one of the best traditional Rome restaurants.

Some to try are:

Armando al Pantheon: Salita dei Crescenzi 31, Rome

Osteria Palmira: Via Abate Ugone 29, Rome

Santo Palato: Piazza Tarquinia 4a/b, Rome

Osteria Fernanda: Via Crescenzo Del Monte, 18 Rome

Amatriciana Recipe – printable version

Amatriciana pasta recipe

Amatriciana pasta recipe

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Easy amatriciana recipe to make delicious amatriciana pasta at home and bring a taste of Rome to your table. This traditional Rome recipe makes a tasty and rich amatriciana sauce that is guaranteed to please family and friends. No fail instructions by a Rome mama for an easy and always satisfactory pasta dinner

Ingredients

  • 350gr spaghetti or bucatini
  • 150gr guanciale (pork), cut in 0.5cm strips
  • 400gr peeled tomatoes (pomodori pelati)
  • 1 small chilly
  • Salt (to taste)
  • 75gr pecorino romano (cheese)
  • Oil (as needed)
  • Dry white wine

Instructions

  1. In a non-sick pan, add your olive oil, heat up gently, then add guanciale and your chilly.
  2. Leave to cook until the fat is translucid and the guanciale crisp
  3. Degrease with white wine, turn the heat slightly up and let evaporate
  4. Take away the guanciale and leave it to rest off the heat
  5. Add peeled whole tomatoes to your pan and let cook
  6. In the meanwhile, cook the spaghetti in a generous amount of salted boiling water.
  7. Just before draining your spaghetti, get rid of the chilly peppers, add guanciale back to the pan and throw in the spaghetti
  8. Coat well adding a tiny bit of the pasta cooking sauce if needed
  9. Add pecorino, serve hot.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 524Total Fat: 32gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 19gCholesterol: 49mgSodium: 1802mgCarbohydrates: 42gFiber: 3gSugar: 5gProtein: 15g

Please note that nutritional information are an estimate only

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