Recipes · Cooking tips · Techniques

Spaghetti Aglio e Olio

Spaghetti Aglio e Olio

Spaghetti aglio e olio is the perfect meal when you’re low on time, money and energy. It’s a delicious dinner that comes together quickly, with just a handful of affordable ingredients.

 

 

What is aglio e olio?

 

Aglio e olio is a traditional Italian dish. It is classic, simple and delicious! Aglio e olio means olive oil and garlic.

 

In this dish, minced, or thinly sliced garlic, is sautéed gently in olive oil until fragrant. Then the garlic oil is tossed with pasta, seasoned with a little salt, and that is it.

 

 

Which olive oil is best for an aglio e olio pasta dish?

 

Since the olive oil is the star of this dish, use a good extra virgin olive oil.

 

Here we serve our spaghetti aglio e olio with delicious homemade garlic bread. But a side salad goes great with this pasta too.

 

If you’re looking to mix it up a bit, with just a little extra time and few extra dollars, try this spaghetti aglio e olio and Italian sausage recipe. It’s one of our favorite meals.

A large platter of spaghetti aglio e olio with Italain sausage arranged around the pasta.

 

This spaghetti aglio e olio with tomatoes and basil is a delicious, fresh take on the classic!

Spaghetti Aglio e Olio with Fresh Tomatoes and Basil served in a white bowl.

 

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To make this spaghetti aglio e olio you will need

 

16 ounces Spaghetti, cooked to package directions for al dente

2 tablespoons of Kosher Salt for the pasta water, plus extra for the finished dish (about 1 teaspoon)

6 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

5-6 Large Garlic Cloves, minced

1 tablespoon Fresh Parsley, chopped for garnish

Grated Parmesan Cheese, for serving, optional

 

 

Start the pasta water before making the aglio e olio

 

It only takes a few minutes to heat the olive oil and cook the garlic, so start the pasta before getting started on the oil.

 

Start a large pot of water over high heat. Bring the water to a full boil. It will take about 10-15 minutes for the water to come to a full boil.

 

Drop the pasta in the boiling water and cook it to package directions for al-dente. Remember to add about 2 tablespoons of salt to the water after it comes to a boil.

 

Before draining the pasta, reserve at least one cup of the cooking water. I use a ladle to remove some of the water and keep it in a glass measuring cup. Drain the pasta and add it back to the pot.

 

 

Make the garlic oil

 

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. When the olive oil is hot, but nowhere near smoking, add the garlic to the skillet.

 

Cook the garlic gently for about 1 minute, stirring constantly. You’ll know it’s done because the garlic will become very fragrant. Take the skillet off the burner or the residual heat will continue to cook the garlic.

 

The trick to this dish is to cook the garlic gently over moderate to moderate low heat, and stir it frequently. Don’t leave the garlic unattended. Give it your full attention.

 

Garlic burns very easily and if it does, it becomes bitter and pretty much inedible. If your garlic burns (it happens) toss it and start over.

 

 

Finish the spaghetti aglio e olio

 

Add the garlic oil over the cooked spaghetti and toss well. Then add a few tablespoons of the reserved pasta water and continue tossing until the noodles are slippery and really easy to toss.

 

Season the pasta aglio e olio with salt, to taste. As a reference we added 1 teaspoon of salt to ours.

 

Garnish with fresh parsley and serve it with parmesan cheese, if desired.

A close up of spaghetti aglio e olio served on a black plate of two pieces of garlic toast in the background.

 

Serves 6

 

Want more pasta dinner inspiration? Check out these great recipes:

Italian sausage meatballs served over spaghetti for a little twist on a classic.

Hot sausage rigatoni, hearty with just the right amount of kick.

Penne and vodka sauce, as easy as it is delicious.

Lemon pepper pasta, a light and fresh recipe you’ll really enjoy!

 

Spaghetti Aglio e Olio served on a black plate with two pieces of garlic toast in the background.
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Spaghetti Aglio e Olio

Spaghetti aglio e olio is the perfect meal when you’re low on time, money and energy. It’s a delicious dinner that comes together quickly, with just a handful of affordable ingredients.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: pasta aglio e olio, pasta with garlic oil, spaghetti aglio e olio, spaghetti recipes
Servings: 6
Calories: 408kcal

Ingredients

  • 16 ounces Spaghetti cooked to package directions for al dente
  • 2 tablespoons Kosher Salt for the pasta water plus extra for the finished dish (about 1 teaspoon)
  • 6 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 5-6 Large Garlic Cloves minced
  • 1 tablespoon Fresh Parsley chopped for garnish
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese for serving, optional

Instructions

Start the pasta water before making the aglio e olio

  • Start a large pot of water over high heat. Bring the water to a full boil. It will take about 10-15 minutes for the water to come to a full boil.
  • Add 2 tablespoons of salt to the water after it comes to a boil.
  • Drop the pasta in the boiling water and cook it to package directions for al-dente.
  • Before draining the pasta reserve at least one cup of the cooking water.
  • Drain the pasta and add it back to the pot.

Make the garlic oil

  • Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.
  • When the olive oil is hot, but nowhere near smoking, add the garlic to the skillet.
  • Cook the garlic gently for about 1 minute, stirring constantly. You’ll know it’s done because the garlic will become very fragrant.
  • Take the skillet off the burner or the residual heat will continue to cook the garlic.

Finish the spaghetti aglio e olio

  • Add the garlic oil over the cooked spaghetti and toss well.
  • Then add a few tablespoons of the reserved pasta water and continue tossing until the noodles are slippery and really easy to toss.
  • Season the pasta aglio e olio with salt, to taste. As a reference we added 1 teaspoon of salt to ours.
  • Garnish with fresh parsley and serve it with parmesan cheese, if desired.

Notes

It only takes a few minutes to heat the olive oil and cook the garlic, so start the pasta before getting started on the oil.

Nutrition

Calories: 408kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 780mg | Potassium: 178mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1.1% | Vitamin C: 2% | Calcium: 2% | Iron: 6.4%
All data provided here is for informational purposes only. This information is provided as a courtesy and there is no guarantee that it is accurate.

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