~ 5 ingredients/mains/meat free/recipe/recipes

The Easiest Cacio e Pepe: 4 Ingredients, One Pot, No Draining

Posted February 18, 2019 by Stephanie
cacio e pepe | i am a food blog

I’m obsessed with cacio e pepe. I mean, black pepper and cheese pasta? Hello deliciousness! Cacio e pepe is already a fast and easy dish, but I went even further and made it a one pot, no drain, easier than pie.

In my humble opinion this is WAY better than any boxed mac and cheese you’ll make. All you need to do is: add a bit of butter in a pot with some black pepper. Warming up the pepper in the butter while it’s melting will help wake it up and make it just that much more fragrant. After the butter is melted, add 1 and a quarter cups water, your pasta of choice and a pinch of salt. Give everything a stir and let it come to a simmer over medium high heat. Set a timer for 9 minutes and let the pasta bubble and cook, giving it an occasional stir.

If the water gets low, add a bit more, about a quarter cup at a time, but before you add water, check to see if your pasta is tender – depending on your pasta, it might be ready at a different time, so rely on your own judgement. When the pasta is tender and there’s almost no more liquid in the pot, remove it from the heat and stir in the cheese until melted. The leftover pasta water in the pan along with the cheese will melt into a glossy, glorious pasta sauce. Taste it, add some salt if you need it, and finish it off with a bit more black pepper. Done! It’s like mac and cheese, but better.

cacio e pepe | i am a food blog

cacio e pepe | i am a food blog

The Easiest 4 Ingredient One Pot Cacio e Pepe
serves 1


  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon freshly coarse cracked black pepper
  • 3 ounces pasta of choice
  • 1/2 cup fine grated pecorino romano or parmesan, plus extra to top

Melt the butter in a pot over medium low heat. Stir in the pepper and let toast slightly, until fragrant.

Add 1 1/4 cup water and the pasta and a pinch of salt and bring to a simmer over medium high heat. Turn the heat down to medium low and stir occasionally until the pasta is tender and almost all the liquid is gone, about 9-10 minutes.

Remove from the heat and stir in the grated cheese until melted and glossy.

Finish with extra cheese and black pepper and enjoy.

4 Comments

  1. Alexia says:

    Sometimes the most simple things are the best. This looks absolutely delicious. One of my favorite pasta dishes is made with browned butter and cheese. So simple, and yet so good.

  2. Megan says:

    Can’t wait to try! What kind of pasta did you use?

    1. Stephanie says:

      hi megan,
      they’re egg noodles, the no yolks kind that come in a clear plastic bag :)

      1. Megan Torrecampo says:

        Perfect! I actually bought those in hopes that they were the right ones! :) Thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *