Pasta alla Gricia

How to Make Pasta alla Gricia

Pasta alla Gricia is a classic and flavorful Roman dish that is often overlooked in favor of its more famous counterparts, such as carbonara and amatriciana. However, don’t let its lesser-known status fool you – this dish is a must-try for anyone who loves pasta! The secret to this dish’s success lies in its simplicity and high-quality ingredients. The combination of guanciale, pecorino romano, and black pepper creates a rich, savory flavor that will leave your taste buds begging for more.

If you’re a fan of Roman cuisine, Pasta alla Gricia is a must-try recipe that you won’t want to miss. Give it a try and let me know how it turns out – I have a feeling it will quickly become a new favorite in your pasta rotation!

Watch the PASTA ALLA GRICIA Video Recipe:

How to Make PASTA ALLA GRICIA Like a Roman

pasta alla gricia

Vincenzo’s Top Tips To Make Pasta alla Gricia

Either more or less

You might need slightly more or less water dependent on the amount of pecorino cheese you use.

DON’T FORGET to turn it OFF

Don’t forget to have the stove turned OFF before you add the cheese or it will stick together and thicken.

Just stir it through

Make sure to stir through your paste evenly throughout until it creates a light and creamy sauce.

pasta alla gricia

Pasta alla Gricia

Vincenzo's Plate
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Roman
Servings 2


  • knife
  • Spatula or Wooden spoon
  • Medium fry pan
  • large pot for boiling pasta
  • Hand-held sieve
  • Chopping-board
  • Mug


  • 200 grams Guanciale 7oz. Pig cheek or Pancetta
  • Pecorino cheese amount desired
  • 300 grams Rigatoni pasta 10oz
  • Black pepper
  • 1 tbsp Rock salt


  • Pasta alla Gricia uses guanciale as a key ingredient so start by removing the skin and cutting the piece into long strips and then smaller pieces.
  • Boil 5L water in a large pot and add 1 tablespoon rock salt, wait to dissolve then add your desired dry pasta. Cook pasta 1 minute less than packet instructions.
  • Put a medium size pan on your stove at a low-medium heat and add the guanciale. Leave to simmer and cook in its own oil for approx. 5 minutes or until it starts to become crispy with slightly golden edges. This crunch is just what you want from Pasta alla Gricia.
  • In the meantime, mix the pecorino cheese with 3 tablespoons of pasta water. It should form into a thick almost dough-like paste.
  • When the pasta is 2 minutes from being ready, scoop up a mug full of pasta water and leave to the side.
  • Once the pasta is cooked, strain it using a hand held sieve and transfer it into the pan with the guanciale. Then add ½ mug pasta water and gently mix using a wooden spoon.
  • Leave to simmer for a minute while the water reduces to no more then 4-5 tablespoons.
  • Remove the pan from heat and add the pecorino paste you created earlier for your pasta alla gricia. Stir through until it melts and spreads evenly throughout, creating a light, creamy sauce.
  • Once the pasta is smothered in sauce and the guanciale has spread in between the pasta and on top, it is time to serve!
  • E ora si mangia, Vincenzo’s Plate….Enjoy!


Keyword Rich, simple
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

How to serve Pasta alla Gricia

You can use a pepper grinder to freshly grind black pepper over each plate or add a pinch of freshly ground black pepper to the pan when mixing the pasta and sauce together. You can also sprinkle some freshly grated pecorino romano cheese on top of each plate for an extra burst of flavor.

Finally, garnish with a sprig of fresh rosemary or thyme for a beautiful presentation. Enjoy!

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