Easy 5 ingredient Cacio e Pepe

Cacio e Pepe

Cacio e Pepe is a simple pasta dish that is rich and full of flavor for an easy weeknight dinner! Made with simple ingredients, this dish comes together in 20 minutes.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 654kcal
Author Julie Blanner


  • 1 pound pasta
  • 6 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
  • 1/3 cup grated Grana Padano
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino*


  • Boil pasta, drain and reserve ½ c pasta water {set aside}.
  • In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add pepper and swirl to toast. 
  • Add pasta and a ½ c pasta water and stir. Reduce heat to low.
  • Toss with Grana Padano.
  • Remove from heat and toss with Pecorino.


Cook the pasta al dente. It will continue to cook once it has drained, and again when it is added to the butter. No one like soggy spaghetti!
This pasta dish is best served as soon as it's made. If you do have leftovers though, store them in an airtight container in the fridge for 2 days. Reheat the pasta gently on the stovetop or in a microwave.
Melt the butter on a medium heat so that it doesn't burn. It should melt but not bubble.
Cheeses are interchangeable...you can use one or both.
I grate the cheeses on the finest side of my grater so that it melts quickly and easily to coat the pasta for that comforting creamy texture. The opposite applies for pepper – I turn the grinder to adjust for larger cracks of the peppercorns for texture and added flavor.


Calories: 654kcal | Carbohydrates: 86g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 64mg | Sodium: 440mg | Potassium: 264mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 642IU | Calcium: 261mg | Iron: 2mg