Rhonda's Spaghetti with Fried Eggs and Pangrattato for One

January 11, 2010

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: In his book, Naples at Table, Arthur Schwartz introduced me to the simple delights of pasta cooked with fried eggs. Living alone overseas while my husband was deployed with the USAF, I became a bit obsessed with this dish - to the point where my sister, Amanda, thought she might have to run an intervention! Ten years later, I have added to and changed this recipe to fit my own tastes. I just love this dish – the yolks coat the pasta and the whites provide little puffs of yumminess throughout this peppery, garlicky dish. The pangrattato tops it all off by adding bits of crunch and bright bursts of lemon and rosemary. I usually make a big batch of the pangrattato and store it in my fridge – it is great on so many things – I use it to top fish, other pasta dishes, warm mushroom salads, etc. Not only is this recipe dead easy to make, it is cheap and delicious!Rhonda35

Serves: one



  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/3 cup fresh or stale coarse breadcrumbs
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • zest from half a lemon

Spaghetti and Eggs

  • 4 ounces spaghetti
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley
  • 1 teaspoon small capers, drained
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
In This Recipe



  1. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the breadcrumbs and sauté until golden and crispy, about 4 to 5 minutes.
  3. Add the rosemary, immediately remove from heat and allow to cool.
  4. Mix in lemon zest and set aside.

Spaghetti and Eggs

  1. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil and cook pasta to al dente according to directions on box. (I usually undercook the pasta by about a minute.)
  2. Wipe out the skillet from the pangrattato, add 1 T olive oil and 1 T butter and melt together over medium heat.
  3. Add the garlic and immediately break the eggs into the skillet.
  4. If need be, lower the heat a bit. You want the garlic to cook without burning and the egg whites to set, but the yolks to remain runny.
  5. Drain the pasta well, reserving 1/2 c of the cooking liquid.
  6. Add pasta back to the pot, add the eggs and all the fat from the skillet, add the parsley and capers and toss well, breaking up the eggs as you do. If you prefer a wetter dish, you can add in some of the reserved cooking liquid.
  7. Plate the pasta and eggs, season well with freshly ground black pepper, sprinkle with the grated cheese and then top with the pangrattato.
  8. Pour yourself a glass of wine and enjoy!

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Reviews (113) Questions (0)

113 Reviews

Paola October 4, 2018
Apart from the wine, a carbonara substitute that pregnant ladies can enjoy! I am absolutely making this...I want carbonara!!!
Mishnial S. September 23, 2018
Just made this great recipe! Thanks. Couple of things I am going to change for next time. One: going to set the yolks aside to ensure they don't get over cooked. Two: the stated amounts are for one, but doubling made way too much, so going to go with 1 and 1/2 times amounts. Thinking about a small amount of cream as well. Excellent dish.
Author Comment
Rhonda35 September 23, 2018
Glad you enjoyed it!
tonimmartin August 7, 2018
I love this recipe and have made it many times. I typically add lots of arugula or spinach, whatever I have on hand. I find I always need some of the pasta water, perhaps I go too easy on the olive oil. Easy and highly addictive!
Catherine O. July 8, 2018
This sounds fantastic! I love pasta dishes whose ingredients I usually have on hand. And like some others, I use whatever parsley-equivalent I have on hand. Thanks.
Katherine L. March 31, 2018
I made this last night- delicious! Doubled the recipe and added a squeeze of lemon at the end. Didn't have parsley, so I used cilantro- yum! Any herb would be great!
Antonia C. March 26, 2018
Commented twice on this- Sorry! But I do just LOVE IT!
Antonia C. March 26, 2018
This is just such a great dish! I have now made it three times and I cannot explain how comforting it is. I always make too much and serve it in a large bowl which I then take to the couch and cradle. Love love love!
Author Comment
Rhonda35 March 26, 2018
So glad you love it as much as I do! :-)
Rob B. February 27, 2018
Add bacon if you like. Use whisked uncooked eggs, stirred in with the hot pasta they will cook right up!
Antonia C. February 26, 2018
This is amazing. AH. MAY. ZING!!!!!
I added extra an extra clove of garlic (I’m a fan), a drizzle of olive oil and lemon juice at the end! Second glass of wine already still nomming on the pasta it’s a winner! Pure bliss!
Author Comment
Rhonda35 February 26, 2018
YAY! Always happy to have another convert. I'm glad you enjoyed it and I like your last little splash of lemon juice at the end - good idea!
[email protected] February 25, 2018
It amazes me that I enjoy the story that goes with the recipe so much that I want to try making it myself. This was a delightful back-story. You can rest assured that I will make this savory, eggy recipe some time soon.
Author Comment
Rhonda35 February 26, 2018
Happy to entertain! ;-) Please do try the recipe sometime.
Susanna January 30, 2016
I'm thinking about making this for breakfast. Why not? Though I supposed I'd have to forego the wine...
John H. January 1, 2016
I printed out the recipe and I am going to give it a whirl. I'm not much of a caper fan and wonder if it is necessary to have? I love the idea of adding pancetta to it. This recipe made my mouth water from the beginning and I am brainstorming to add in some of my favorite things as I love pasta.
Author Comment
Rhonda35 January 1, 2016
Leaving out the capers is fine. Enjoy!
ianbosborne September 30, 2015
I made it but added chopped up and fried some pancetta and used that as one more topping.
Came out great!
I'll be making this again and again.
Author Comment
Rhonda35 October 1, 2015
That sounds like a tasty addition!
ianbosborne September 30, 2015
I made it and adde
isabelle June 8, 2015
I'm going to try it but I will use only one egg which I will probably just stir into the cooked pasta and try cooking the crumbs in only 1 tbs of fat and cut the cheese in half. As written the recipe seems like a very generous dish for one.
ltaliaf June 7, 2015
Oh, but it's such a delicious treat! You could probably poach the eggs and save a bit of fat there. Just sauté the garlic on it's own in a little oil.
isabelle June 7, 2015
That's 4 tablespoons of fat for one person for one meal. I don't eat that much all day.
Author Comment
Rhonda35 June 7, 2015
I'd guess there's even more fat, actually - if you consider the fats in the eggs and cheese. I'm sure you could cut back on the amounts and still have a successful pasta dish. If you do give it a try, please let us know how it worked out for you.
Lori L. June 7, 2015
Even if it was four cups of fat I'd still make it every day. It's the most delicious pasta!
Hollie D. April 10, 2015
SO good
Scott B. February 28, 2015
I made this and added some red chile flakes with the garlic and some golden raisins with the capers. It was amazing!!
Author Comment
Rhonda35 June 7, 2015
That sounds delicious! I'm going to give it a try next time.
Kim M. January 18, 2015
We just loved this! Used Earth Balance instead of butter and it was a delight. I made it twice in a row -- which I never do -- because of how delicious it was. My two cents: Pecorino is a must. Also, instead of breadcrumbs, I ground up crostini from Whole Foods (the kind Whole Foods makes out of leftover baguettes). It was super crunchy and awesome. thank you for sharing. :)
Author Comment
Rhonda35 June 7, 2015
I love your idea of using crumbled crostini!