Upgrade pasta night with this Vegetarian Carbonara: the ultimate comfort dish. Made with mushrooms, parmesan, and egg yolks, this dish goes heavy on the creaminess and great on the taste.
Today we’re sticking to one of our all-time favorites: hearty, filling pasta. We’re using regular spaghetti noodles, though this isn’t your standard spaghetti dish at all. Instead, this dish is flavored to perfection, carbonara style.
Do you know what truly makes a carbonara dish? It’s all in one ingredient: the eggs. Where regular spaghetti is classically just noodles with marinara sauce (or butter and parmesan for alfredo), carbonara uses egg yolks to create a creaminess not possible with the other variations.
For this dish, we’re using both yolks and whole eggs to reach a level of rich creaminess so great that you’ll be going back for thirds!
Ingredients in vegetarian spaghetti carbonara
This recipe uses only 8 ingredients, two of which are seasonings! I love a simple dish that uses minimal items and is easy to whip together. This is definitely one of those meals. It comes together in 20 minutes, including cooking time.
- Butter: First up, we’ll be using 2 tablespoon of butter to sauté the mushrooms. Unsalted is best, as the parmesan will add enough salty taste to the dish.
- Mushrooms: As for the mushrooms, slice up 3 cups. You can use your favorite type of mushroom here (white or brown button mushrooms are easiest to find, but shiitake or portobello add loads of flavor!)
- Garlic: Add flavor by including 2 cloves of minced garlic. While fresh garlic is best, you can use 1/4 tsp of dried garlic to replace the 2 cloves.
- Spaghetti: Finally, the pasta! Use 1 lb of (uncooked) spaghetti noodles (though bucatini and rigatoni are alternative types of pasta too).
- Salt: Add 2 tablespoons of salt to the pasta water for maximum flavor. (No worries, you won’t actually be eating all that sodium – most of it will stay in the water).
- Eggs: Next up is the ingredient that makes this dish a classic carbonara: eggs! First, you’ll need 4 yolks at room temperature. Then, you’ll need 2 whole eggs, also at room temperature. Room temperature is crucial as it effects the consistency and the way it will cook.
- Parmesan Cheese: Finally, set aside 1 cup of finely grated parmesan cheese, which adds savory, salty flavor.
How to make vegetarian carbonara
Vegetarian spaghetti carbonara uses 5 steps to create the perfect creamy dish!
Step 1: Prepare the mushrooms
Melt the butter in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and garlic, cooking until the mushrooms lose their moisture and become soft, about 5 minutes.
Step 2: Whisk the eggs
Whisk together the egg yolks and whole eggs until evenly mixed. Then, stir in the parmesan
Step 3: Cook the pasta
Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add the salt and spaghetti. Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the package, until the spaghetti is al dente. When finished, save 1 cup of water that you cooked the pasta in, and strain out the rest.
Step 4: Temper the eggs
Very slowly drizzle the 1 cup of pasta water into the eggs, whisking as you pour. This tempers the eggs so that they won’t scramble when they hit the hot noodles.
Step 5: Combine the ingredients
Finally, stir the egg mixture and mushrooms into the spaghetti noodles. Top with cracked black pepper and more parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.
Add veggies to your dish
Want to add more vegetable powerhouse ingredients to your carbonara? Go for it!
- Asparagus: Chop up spears of asparagus for a nutritious crunch in every bite. Quickly saute or roast them for maximum deliciousness. With that parmesan, it’s a killer combo.
- Zucchini: Give your carbonara a summertime vibe with fresh chopped zucchini! Just saute them over high heat with a splash of oil until golden browna and slightly soft.
- Cherry tomatoes: Adding tomatoes is a surefire way to up the subtle sweetness. Throw them in halved, or roast them to bring out their sweetness.
- Red onion: Finally, add a kick to your dish with chopped red onion.
More creamy pasta recipes
Dig in to more yummy pasta recipes this week! All are made with flavorful ingredients that are sure to hit the spot.
- Zucchini Pasta with Creamy Avocado Pesto
- Sweet Potato Fettuccini in Gorgonzola Sauce
- Vegetable Baked Ziti
- Butternut Squash Pasta with Gorgonzola and Cranberries
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter 28 g
- 3 cups sliced mushrooms 180 g
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 lb uncooked spaghetti 450 g
- 2 Tbsp salt
- 4 egg yolks room temperature
- 2 whole eggs room temperature
- 1 cup finely grated parmesan cheese 85 g
- Mushrooms: Melt butter in a saute pan over medium heat. Add mushrooms and garlic, cooking until mushrooms lose their moisture and become soft, about 5 minutes.
- Whisk Eggs: Whisk together the egg yolks and whole eggs until evenly mixed. Stir in the parmesan.
- Pasta: Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add salt and spaghetti. Cook according to instructions on package, until spaghetti is al dente. When finished, save 1 cup of the water that you cooked the pasta in, and strain out the rest.
- Temper Eggs: Very slowly drizzle the 1 cup of pasta water into the eggs, whisking as you pour. This tempers the eggs so that they won't scramble when they hit the hot noodles.
- Combine: Stir the egg mixture and mushrooms into the spaghetti noodles. Top with cracked black pepper and more parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.