Creamy Lemon Pasta Carbonara

a large plate filled with spaghetti and peas topped with parmesan
vegetarian pasta carbonara photo by jonathan gayman


3 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. capers, drained and patted dry
2 eggs
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 Tbsp. lemon zest
½ tsp. kosher salt
9 to 12 oz. fresh spaghetti, linguine or long noodle of your choice
½ cup frozen peas
¾ cup freshly grated pecorino or Parmesan cheese
¼ cup toasted sliced almonds
½ tsp. red pepper flakes


• In a small skillet over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Carefully add the capers (The oil may pop and spatter.) and fry 30 to 45 seconds, then transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Set aside.

• In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, lemon juice, lemon zest and salt. Set aside.

• Bring a large pot of salted water to boil over high heat and prepare the pasta according to package directions.

• Place the peas in a colander in the sink. Reserve ½ cup pasta water and drain the spaghetti over the peas, then immediately add the pasta and peas to the egg mixture and toss with tongs to coat the pasta.

• Add the fried capers, pecorino, almonds and red pepper flakes. If the sauce is too thick, add the reserved pasta water a few tablespoons at a time until the desired consistency is reached. Serve immediately.