Spaghetti al Limone

How to Make Spaghetti al Limone

Take a trip to Sicily or the Amalfi Coast with my Spaghetti al Limone recipe. Bursting with fresh lemon flavor, this simple and beautiful Mediterranean dish is light yet creamy. As usual it’s ALL in the ingredients – source beautiful lemons, it will make a world of difference!

Watch the Spaghetti al Limone recipe

How to Make Spaghetti al Limone

Spaghetti al limone. Perfectly creamy, without the cream. The question is, do you like my added twist? Continue reading to find out what it is, if you haven’t already guessed!

Vincenzo’s Plate Top Tips for Making Spaghetti al Limone 

This recipe has minimal ingredients and will not take long at all yet the flavors will impress your guests, no matter what their palette is like, they just need to enjoy lemon! Whenever cooking a dish like this, there are some important things to take into consideration. So if you’ve chosen Spaghetti al limone as your dish of choice, take note of Vincenzo’s tips and you can’t go wrong!

Check the packet instructions for your pasta!

When cooking dry pasta, always follow the time recommended on the packaging once your water has boiled. For this recipe  you want to cook your pasta slightly less than this, because these last few minutes of the pasta’s cooking time will be done in the pan with the sauce.

Keep it light and avoid butter

You can use butter if you prefer, but using extra virgin olive oil is the REAL Mediterranean way to make this dish. It will also turn out a lot lighter.

My minty twist

My twist on this recipe is MINT! You can add as much (or as little) mint as you want. If you don’t like it add basil instead, or you can leave the herbs out all together, but they do balance the flavor of the lemon really well.

Keep it in theme

This dish will absolutely transport you to Italy – so if you’re having guests over, theme your table with whole lemons and their leaves!

AVOID CREAM – Obviously!

This isn’t a cacio e pepe, but the pecorino romano cheese will add a delightful creaminess to the spaghetti al limone instead of adding cream. This pasta is perfect the way it is, don’t add any cream!

Spaghetti al limone

Bursting with freshlemon flavor, this simple and beautiful Mediterranean dish is light yet creamy.Although many people like to add cream, this dish does not need it at all. Use pecorinoromano to add creaminess the true Mediterranean way.
 Pasta al limone.Perfectly creamy, without the cream.  
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Course Main Course, Pasta
Cuisine Italian
Servings 2


  • 1 Stock-pot
  • 1 Zester
  • 1 Plate
  • 1 Large pan or Skillet
  • 1 Tongs
  • 1 Large Spoon
  • 1 Mug
  • 1 Glass
  • 2 Plates for serving


  • 200 grams linguine pasta (7oz) The pasta is the most important ingredient. High-quality pasta is rough, white, and not orange in any way.
  • 1 handful mint leaves You can use basil if you don’t like mint
  • 1 lemon per person
  • Extra virgin olive oil EVOO
  • 1 bowl Pecorino Romano a small bowl will do
  • 1 tbsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Pepper Use as much or as little as you like


  • Pasta al limone begins by bringing a large stock pot full of water to boil.
  • Once boiling, add 1 tbsp of rock salt and allow to dissolve.
  • Cook your pasta for 2 minutes less than the package recommends.
  • While the pasta is cooking, zest one lemon onto a plate. This should be enough for two people, but you can zest another lemon if you want a richer lemon flavor.
  • Cut both lemons in half and squeeze the juice into a glass or bowl. Make sure to get as much juice as possible. Do not discard the lemon halves.
  • While the pasta cooks, place 4tbsp EVOO into a large saute pan or skillet and heat on medium-high heat.
  • Add the lemon zest into the oil along with half of the lemon juice.
  • Break off a handful of mint leaves and place them in the pan.
  • Place the juiced lemon halves in the pan flat side down. This will give extra flavor to the base.
  • Once your pasta is ready, strain it and place it in the pan with the lemon mixture.
  • Take a mug and dip it into the pasta water. Make sure to get a generous amount.
  • Pour the mug into the pan with the lemons and pasta, and turn the heat to high.
  • For the first minute, constantly stir while the pasta water evaporates.
  • Remove the lemon halves from the pan after 1 minute and cook the pasta for another 1.5 minutes total.
  • With one minute remaining, zest the remaining lemon into the pan, saving some for decoration.
  • Tear off more mint leaves and add them to the pan.
  • With 45 seconds to go, add in the rest of the reserved lemon juice. Keep stirring the pasta on high heat. Stir until all the water has evaporated.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and add the pecorino romano cheese. Toss to coat.
  • E ora si mangia, Vincenzo’s Plate….Enjoy!


Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

How to serve Spaghetti al Limone

Now it’s time to serve your pasta al limone! Place a portion of pasta onto a plate and swirl with tongs. Scoop up some extra lemony sauce and add it on top. Top with additional lemon zest, and break fresh mint leaves on top as a garnish.

Enjoy how creamy this pasta gets with the simple addition of pecorino romano. Simple, light, healthy, and beautiful!

Notice the strong flavors from the lemon and the fresh mint? This is a truly wonderful culinary experience.

WARNING: Do not make this dish with cream! Anyone who shows you how to make this dish with cream ruins the true Mediterranean flavors!

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