Spaghetti Aglio Olio e Peperoncino Recipe | Pasta Recipes | PBS Food

Spaghetti Aglio Olio e Peperoncino

Spaghetti Aglio Olio e Peperoncino is a quick, go-to first course or side made with olive oil, chili peppers and garlic. Food blogger Marc Matsumoto provides tips for picking the perfect olive oil and finding the right chili in a full post on the Fresh Tastes blog.


Yield: 3-4 servings


  • 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 large cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 2 chili peppers, seeds removed and finely minced
  • 400 grams spaghetti (14 ounces)
  • Salt


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add enough salt so that the water is very salty (just shy of sea water). This is important, as there is no salt in the "sauce", so if you don't have enough salt in the pasta water, the finished pasta will taste bland.
  2. Add the spaghetti and cook until al dente. In most cases, the package directions call to cook spaghetti for 9 minutes. I cook mine for 7 minutes 30 seconds to get it perfectly al dente, but this will vary depending on your preference and altitude (the higher you are from sea-level, the longer you’ll need to boil the pasta).
  3. While your pasta is boiling, add the olive oil, garlic and chili peppers to a frying pan and heat over a medium low flame. Let the garlic gently fry until browned, swirling the oil around occasionally to make sure it browns evenly. Be careful not to burn the garlic or it will taste bitter. If it starts to brown too much, turn off the heat.
  4. When the pasta is done, drain it, and add the pasta to the frying pan. Use a pair of tongs to toss the pasta in the garlic chili oil and coat each strand evenly.
  5. Serve immediately
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