Cacio e Pepe

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Mary Ann Addis

Mary Ann

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3 ingredients for one of the best pasta dishes is a definite must. Cacio e pepe, “cheese and pepper,” is one of my favorite Italian dishes. In Rome, this was my go-to afternoon dish. The flavors are both intense and creamy. Parmigiano-Reggiano and Pecorino Romano are nutty and amazing cheese. These cheeses are the perfect splurge-worthy cheeses. Costco has the greatest deals for huge blocks of these well-beloved cheeses. A little goes a long way. For any lazy evening, this is your go-to pasta dish of dreams! Prego!

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Cacio e Pepe

Prep Time8 mins
Cook Time8 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Italy, pasta, Pepper
Servings: 4


  • 12 oz. Spaghetti or other long pasta
  • cup Pecorino Romano
  • ¾ cup Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 ½ tsp Cracked Black Pepper


  • In a large pot, boil water with a generous pinch of salt. Cook two minutes under directed times (al diente). Drain, reserving ¾ cup pasta cooking water.
  • Meanwhile, grate the cheeses and crack the black pepper. PARMESAN & ROMANO CHEESESince this recipe has minimal ingredients, using the best cheese is essential. 12 months Parmigiano Reggiano and Pecorino Romano are sold in most grocery stores. Get a bargain when buying at Costco! A little goes a long way!
  • Reserve 1 cup of pasta water, and drain the pasta. In a large, deep pot, Add ½ cup of the reserved pasta water to the pot, and bring to a simmer. Add the black pepper and gradually add the cheeses while whisking vigorously. Add some of the pasta water to get it creamy. Reduce heat to low, and add the cooked pasta. Stir to coat.
  • Alternate the Parmesan and Pecorino cheeses with a little pasta water, stirring and tossing with tongs until melted. Add more pasta water if the sauce seems dry. Check for seasoning- the pepper flavor should be strong but not over powerful. Transfer pasta to bowls and serve.



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