Chef John's Spaghetti Aglio Olio

Adapted from

Yields: 4 servings

Preparation time: 10min

Cooking time: 20min

Total time: 30min


  • 500g spaghetti
  • 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced (or even more if you want, more garlic is always good)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup grated parmesan
  • pepper
  • salt


  • Cook spaghetti, drain but keep a cup of the pasta water.
  • In a cold skillet, combined garlic and olive oil. Cook over medium heat for about 10min. Reduce to medium low once the oil begins to bubble. You need to slowly toast the garlic, not burn it. Cook and stir until the garlic is golden brown.
  • Add red pepper flakes, black pepper and salt to the pasta. Pour over olive oil and garlic. Add half of the parmsan.
  • Mix thoroughly and serve with the rest of the parmesan.