Classic 5-Ingredient Bucatini all'Amatriciana Recipe

bucatini amatriciana closeup
bucatini amatriciana closeup - Kate Shungu/Mashed

Pasta night at home can start feeling a little tired after a while. Sure, good ol' spaghetti with meatballs or chicken fettuccine are perennial crowd pleasers, but it's nice to mix things up. And with this classic bucatini all'Amatriciana recipe, you get to indulge in a different flavor profile, but with a very similar preparation method, making it an easy way to mix things up without having to intensely study a long recipe with complicated ingredients.

And if you've eaten bucatini all'Amatriciana, one of four quintessential Roman pasta dishes, in a restaurant before, you're not going to be disappointed by this iteration. "This is a classic preparation for bucatini all'Amatriciana. A number of other preparations use pancetta or prosciutto in place of the guanciale, but this recipe is true to the original dish," says recipe developer Kate Shungu. That's exactly why she appreciates this 5-ingredient recipe so much. "I love how just a few ingredients create a restaurant-quality dish that you can make at home," she says.

Read more: How To Make Perfect Pasta Every Single Time

Gather The Ingredients For Classic Bucatini all'Amatriciana

pasta amatriciana ingredients
pasta amatriciana ingredients - Kate Shungu/Mashed

Some of these ingredients may be new to you, but there are only 5 you need to check your kitchen for before heading to the store. All you need are guanciale (cured pork jowl), crushed tomatoes, red pepper flakes, Pecorino Romano cheese, and bucatini pasta. And, of course, salt to your liking.

Do Your Prep Work And Brown The Guanciale

guanciale in pan
guanciale in pan - Kate Shungu/Mashed

First up, you need to do a little prep work. Place a pot of water on your stove and bring it to a boil. As it's heating up, dice up your guanciale into cubes. "Guanciale is similar in taste to bacon, with a more pronounced porky flavor," Shungu explains.

Once the guanciale is cubed, heat up a large skillet over medium heat and add the meat. Cook it until it's browned, which should take about 3-4 minutes.

Cook The Pasta

bucatini cooking in pot
bucatini cooking in pot - Kate Shungu/Mashed

When the water in your pot is boiling, add some salt before dropping in the pasta. Cook the bucatini according to the directions on the package.

Bucatini pasta is another ingredient you may not have used before, but it's not all that different from other pasta shapes. It's a little like spaghetti in that it comes in long, thin pieces, but it's actually a tube with a hole through the middle. "Bucatini is traditional in this recipe, but spaghetti or linguine work, too," Shungu says.

Add The Tomatoes And Spices To The Guanciale

spicy tomato sauce in pan
spicy tomato sauce in pan - Kate Shungu/Mashed

When the guanciale is cooked, add the can of crushed tomatoes to the pan, using a wooden spoon to scrape off the bottom of the skillet. "As the guanciale cooks, it'll leave little brown bits on the bottom of the pan. Scraping the pan softens these flavorful pieces and incorporates them into the sauce," Shungu explains.

Add the red pepper flakes into the sauce and stir occasionally, letting everything cook for 5 more minutes. If you like a little spice, but not too much, don't let the red pepper flakes worry you — the heat is far from overpowering. "On a scale of 1-10, the spice level is a 2," Shungu says.

Toss The Drained Pasta And Cheese With The Sauce

making amatriciana pasta
making amatriciana pasta - Kate Shungu/Mashed

With the sauce prepared, go ahead and drain the cooked pasta. Add it to the skillet with the pecorino, then toss the sauce and pasta together, mixing it well. Add extra salt if you think the dish needs it.

Serve The Pasta

bucatini all'amatriciana on plate
bucatini all'amatriciana on plate - Kate Shungu/Mashed

The pasta is now ready to serve! Transfer it to plates or a platter and serve it while it's hot. "I love serving this with a piece of baguette or crusty bread, plus a leafy green salad," says Shungu. "A glass of wine sure wouldn't hurt, either!"

If you don't eat it all in one sitting, don't worry, it makes good leftovers. "It will keep in the refrigerator for several days," Shungu says, suggesting that it be reheated in the microwave or in a skillet.

Classic 5-Ingredient Bucatini all'Amatriciana Recipe

5-ingredient bucatini all'amatriciana
5-ingredient bucatini all'amatriciana - Kate Shungu/Mashed

Prep Time: 5mCook Time: 15mYield: 4 servingsIngredients

  • 2 ounces guanciale, diced into ½-inch pieces

  • Salt, to taste

  • 8 ounces bucatini

  • 1 (15-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

  • ½ cup finely grated Pecorino Romano, plus more for serving


  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil.

  2. Place the diced guanciale in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook until browned, about 3-4 minutes.

  3. Season the boiling water with salt, and drop in the bucatini. Cook according to package directions.

  4. Meanwhile, pour the crushed tomatoes into the pan with the guanciale, scraping the bottom of the pan to lift up any browned bits. Add the red pepper flakes and allow to cook for 5 minutes.

  5. Drain the cooked pasta and add it to the skillet along with the pecorino. Toss until combined and season with additional salt if desired.

  6. Transfer the pasta to plates or a serving platter, and serve right away.

Read the original article on Mashed.