Back to Basics: How to Make Pasta al Limone

February 26th 2021

This week on Back To Basics, Whitney gives us a taste of Italy as she shows us How to Make Pasta al Limone.

Boil your pasta until just al dente - the noodles will finish cooking in the sauce. Be sure to reserve some of your pasta cooking water to help bring the sauce together.

This simple recipe comes together in no time and delivers a fresh citrus zing. Try it out yourself with the recipe below:


  • 12 oz spaghetti or other long pasta
  • Kosher salt
  • Zest from one lemon
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 3 oz finely grated Parmesan (about ¾ cup)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • Freshly ground black pepper


          1. Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until just al dente  (pasta will finish cooking in the sauce).
          1. Add lemon zest and cream to a large pot or Dutch oven and cook over medium heat,  whisking often, until liquid is just beginning to simmer, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low. Whisk in butter 1 tablespoon at a time until melted and sauce is creamy. Remove from heat.
          1. Just before pasta is al dente, scoop out 1½ cups pasta water. Add ¾ cup pasta water to  cream sauce and return to medium heat. Using tongs, transfer pasta to pot with sauce. Cook, tossing often and adding Parmesan little by little, until cheese is melted and sauce is creamy, about 3 minutes. Stir in reserved lemon juice and season with more salt, if needed.
          1. Divide pasta among bowls and season with pepper.

              Pasta al Limone

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