This creamy pasta with bacon and peas is an easy one-pan dinner recipe made with simple pantry ingredients. Flavorful, delicious, and perfect for busy weeknights!
Easy Bacon Pea Pasta
If you’re craving comfort food then you are going to love this bacon and pea pasta. Quick and delicious, it’s similar in taste to classic Italian carbonara – minus the egg.
Made with spaghetti noodles tossed in a light parmesan cream sauce and filled with loads of bacon and peas, this easy bacon and pea pasta is a true winner and family favorite.
Perfect any time of year, rain or shine, I love serving this recipe with a simple side salad or buttery garlic bread.
How to Make Pasta with Bacon and Peas
- Start by bringing a large pot of salted water to a boil. The plan is to cook the bacon and make the sauce while the water comes to a boil and the pasta is cooking.
- Grab a large pan, skillet, or Dutch oven to cook everything in.
- Cook the bacon until it is fully cooked, crispy, and fat is rendered. Remove the bacon from the pan, but leave rendered bacon grease in the pot.
- Cook the onion in the bacon grease until softened, then add the garlic.
- Stir in the chicken broth and the frozen (or fresh) peas. Cook for a few minutes before adding the heavy cream.
- Bring to a gentle simmer (avoid boiling heavy cream), and stir in half of the grated parmesan cheese.
- Add the cooked bacon and spaghetti noodles to the sauce and gently toss to combine.
- Season with salt and black pepper, to taste. Add the remaining parmesan cheese over the top.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- I used spaghetti to make this recipe, but feel free to use any pasta noodle including linguine, fettuccine, or angel hair or small to medium-size pasta shape such as bowtie, shells, rotini, fusilli, rigatoni, etc.
- Use freshly grated parmesan cheese – not the powdered stuff or pre-shredded kind that comes in a bag. The flavor will be better overall and there won’t be any weird clumping.
- Expect to add a little bit of liquid (cream, chicken broth, etc) before reheating leftovers. Heat for 30 seconds in the microwave, gently stir and continue to heat until the desired temperature is reached.
- Thick-cut pork bacon will give the best flavor. Turkey bacon or pre-cooked bacon bits is not recommended. You may also swap the bacon with prosciutto or pancetta, if desired.
Looking for more delicious pasta recipes? Try these reader favorites:
- Roasted Red Pepper Pasta with Chicken
- Creamy Lemon Chicken Pasta
- Creamy Penne Pasta Recipe
- Ground Turkey Pasta Recipe
- Easy Bacon Broccoli Pasta Recipe
- Pasta Primavera Recipe
Did you try this creamy pasta with bacon and peas?
Tell me about it in the comments below! I always love to hear your thoughts. And tag me #theforkedspoon on Instagram if you’ve made any of my recipes, I always love to see what you’re cooking in the kitchen.
Pasta with Bacon and Peas
- 8 ounces dry spaghetti noodles
- 12 ounces thick-cut bacon (diced into small pieces)
- ½ onion (minced (or 2 shallots))
- 3 cloves garlic (minced)
- ½ cup chicken broth
- 1 cup frozen peas
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- ½ cup parmesan cheese (grated)
- reserved pasta water (see notes)
- salt and black pepper (to taste)
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (I usually add at least 1 tablespoon of salt) and cook the pasta 1-2 minutes less than the package instructions (or until al dente). Reserve 1 cup of boiling pasta water before draining. Set the pasta aside.
- As the pasta cooks, cook the bacon in a large skillet or Dutch oven set over medium to medium-high heat until it is cooked, crispy, and the fat is rendered. Remove the bacon from the pan using a slotted spoon and drain it on a plate lined with paper towels.
- Set the pan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Cook the onion in the rendered bacon fat until it is soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the minced garlic and continue to cook for an additional 1 minute.
- Add the chicken broth and the frozen peas. Cook just until the peas have thawed then stir in the heavy cream (adding more cream for a richer sauce).
- Bring to a gentle simmer and stir in half of the grated parmesan cheese.
- Return the cooked bacon to the sauce and add the cooked pasta. Gently toss to combine. Slowly add some of the reserved pasta water, as needed to thin the sauce.
- Season with additional salt and plenty of freshly cracked black pepper, to taste. Sprinkle with the remaining grated parmesan cheese.
- This recipe can be made with any pasta shape or pasta noodle.
- This recipe is best when it is made with heavy cream. Add more heavy cream to make a heavier, richer, cream sauce.
- The reserved pasta water is already hot, salty, and starchy. Reserve at least one cup and add to the sauce if needed.
(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.)