Cacio e Pepe

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 20 min
  • Active: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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12 ounces thick-cut dry pasta

Kosher salt

30 turns freshly ground black pepper, on the coarsest setting, plus more for serving

1/3 cup grated Pecorino-Romano cheese, plus more for serving

2 tablespoons high-quality extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving


  1. In a pan just wide enough to hold the pasta, place enough water to fill the pan 1 inch from the bottom. Season the water with a pinch of salt and bring to a boil. Spread the pasta in the pan and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally to prevent the pasta from sticking together. Allow the pasta water to reduce; do not add more, as you want the starchy water to be minimal when the remaining ingredients are added.
  2. Meanwhile, add the coarse black pepper to a separate small pan over medium heat. Toast a minute or two until fragrant.
  3. Once the pasta is al dente and the pasta water has reduced so only a slight coating remains at the bottom of the pan, turn off the heat and add the toasted ground black pepper and Pecorino-Romano. Stir and toss vigorously until both ingredients are well incorporated into the pasta. Toss in the olive oil and season with salt.
  4. Transfer the pasta to a large bowl and garnish with more black pepper, Pecorino-Romano and extra-virgin olive oil.
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