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Spaghetti Aglio e Olio Recipe

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Pasta
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: pasta
Servings: 2 - 4 servings


  • 2 cloves garlic
  • ¼ teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil extra virgin
  • salt for pasta water, 1 teaspoon per quart of water
  • ½ pound pasta
  • ½ cup cooking water from pasta
  • salt to taste
  • 4 fresh basil leaves
  • Parmesan cheese to taste


  • Timing is important when preparing this dish so have your ingredients prepped, equipment ready to go and have fun.
  • Preheat your oven to the lowest setting and bring a large pot of water to boil. While the water is heating, thinly slice (émincé) the garlic and measure out the chili flakes.
  • Place a large, non-stick skillet onto the stove top and add half of the oil, followed by the garlic and chili flakes. At this point, don't turn the heat on. Just let this sit while the pasta water comes to a boil.
  • Once the water has come to a boil, add the salt and stir. With the water at a rumbling boil, add the pasta, stirring so it doesn't stick together.
  • Turn up the heat under your skillet to medium and let the garlic cook slowly. You'll want to spread the garlic out in the pan a little so it cooks evenly but not too much or it may burn. As soon as you hear the garlic start to sizzle, remove it from the heat.
  • Heat your plates in the oven to warm up as the pasta finishes cooking. When the past is al-dente, remove and reserve ½ cup of cooking water, drain the pasta and add it to the pan with garlic and oil.
  • Raise the heat back to medium and add the reserved pasta water. Add a pinch of salt, tear and add the basil leaves over top.
  • Toss and continue to cook for a few minutes until the water cooks off. Turn off the heat; add the remaining olive oil, some freshly grated Parmesan cheese and toss to combine.
  • Remove the warmed plates from the oven and portion out the pasta.
  • Serve immediately with a touch more grated Parmesan cheese and enjoy.