Spaghetti al Limone will please all fans of mac’n’cheese and Cacio e Pepe! This easy, 5-ingredient recipe is rich, zesty, and utterly satisfying to eat. Dig in as is, or fold in veggies and/or proteins for a heartier dish!
This post contains affiliate links. Full disclosure is at the bottom of the article.
When I’m pressed for time on weeknights (i.e., MOST NIGHTS), the first thing I grab onto to assemble a quick and easy dinner is dry pasta. In my pantry, there’s an entire shelf dedicated to dry pasta in all shapes and sizes, and this is because … yes, I constantly impulse-buy new pasta shapes when I visit my local Italian grocery store, and yes, pasta can be transformed into an infinite number of meals.
Typically, in a last-minute pasta dish, I’ll throw in “everything but the kitchen sink”: jarred pesto or tomato sauce, some protein I have on hand, and some chopped-up veggies. Top with Parmigiano-Reggiano (which makes everything taste better)—and you’re done!
Over the years, though, I’ve adopted a collection of actual, classic Italian pasta recipes, which I’ve discovered are just as quick and easy to make as an improvised one, provided I keep the necessary ingredients on hand. And I do, now, always have ingredients to make my family’s go-to pasta dishes, because I make them so often and love them so much! Bucatini all’Amatriciana is our favorite tomato-based pasta dish (I keep chopped up and portioned out guanciale in the freezer so I can always make the dish in a pinch), and Cacio e Pepe pasta has easily been crowned “best cheesy pasta” at my house.
But if I had to name my very favorite weeknight pasta dish, it would be this irresistible Spaghetti al Limone. Creamy lemon spaghetti is everything everyone loves about pasta: it’s rich, creamy, zesty, and utterly satisfying to eat. What I love most about this recipe is you can make and eat it as is, but it’s also a blank canvas for last-minute additions: I usually throw in a couple of handfuls of baby spinach and let them wilt for a minute right before serving. If I have roasted chicken on hand, I’ll dice and fold it in. When I have enough time for an extra step, I’ll fry some shrimps and add them to the dish, too. I’ve even topped this humble Spaghetti al Limone with luxurious lobster meat and served it at a dinner party!
The basic recipe for Spaghetti al Limone requires only five ingredients—and that includes the pasta! The creamy lemon sauce is easier to make than Cacio e Pepe, which requires a bit of practice to achieve. Creamy lemon spaghetti is literally a foolproof recipe. Plus, another incredibly handy thing to know is that it reheats wonderfully! The recipe makes four generous servings, but if you have leftovers, no worries: simply throw refrigerated leftovers back into a pan with a splash of water, reheat over low heat, and watch the wonderful sauce return to its glossy glory in just minutes.
In other words, Spaghetti al Limone deserves a spot in your go-to weeknight recipe list. But make sure to serve it on special nights, too, because it quite simply tastes glorious!
A quick note about the origins of this recipe: My Spaghetti al Limone recipe is adapted from Bon Appétit magazine, but over the years, I’ve made it my own by considerably reducing the amounts of heavy cream and butter used in the original recipe. I found that by using more pasta cooking water and adding a bit more Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese to the sauce, you end up with a sauce that’s just as irresistibly silky and rich, but is much lighter on your system. Always happy to create better-for-you weeknight dinner options for you! 🙌🏼
Love savory citrus recipes? Then you’ll love my Savory Citrus Delights Cookbook! Discover zesty variations on timeless classics, create colorful, nutritious lunches, and expand your weeknight dinner repertoire with aromatic, creative dishes the whole family will love. Savory Citrus Delights is a 16-recipe downloadable eBook that comes in a handy, “save it everywhere” PDF format! LEARN MORE
Tell me how you liked it! Leave a comment or take a picture and tag it with @foodnouveau on Instagram.
Disclosure Notice: This site is a participant in the Amazon Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for the site to earn fees by linking to Amazon and affiliated sites.
If you click on an affiliate link, I may earn advertising or referral fees if you make a purchase through such links, at no extra cost to you. This helps me creating new content for the blog–so thank you! Learn more about advertising on this site by reading my Disclosure Policy.
Author: Marie Asselin
Trying for the first time tonight for a dinner party. Serving Florintine Steak! Should be delicious!
Spaghetti al Limone is a great side dish—though it’s so delicious it might upstage your main 🙊 Hope your guests enjoyed it!
This recipe was so easy to make! Such simple ingredients and such rich flavor! I wouldn’t change a thing in this recipe. Will definitely make it again!!
I’ve made this recipe so many times and so I’m happy you appreciated all my tweaks! 😅
This creamy lemon spaghetti is absolutely delicious and so flavorful. I love simple dishes like this. It’s so easy to make and definitely does not disappoint.
Agreed, this is an utterly satisfying dish–I can’t think of anyone who wouldn’t enjoy it!
This pasta was delicious. Love the bright, lemon flavor. We ate it with grilled chicken and it was scrumptious!
Great serving tip! I always have it on its own, but this pasta would indeed be perfect as a side to a number of grilled proteins, from chicken to seafood!
OMG, this spaghetti al Limone recipe is making me drool just by looking at the photos! I am really craving this recipe right now and I am definitely going to make it tomorrow. Thank you for sharing this recipe!
The photos make me drool, too! 😂 Let me know how you like them Ramona!
Pasta is definitely our go to for a delicious easy meal, being Italian and all. Love the simplicity of this padta, it is truly the Italian way. Love how that lemon just spikes the flavors and adds joyfulness and brightness to the table!
Great post, thanks for sharing brings us back home!😁👍👌😍❤
Your comments always mean so much to me! Thank you ❤️
This creamy lemon spaghetti was so delicious! I loved the vibrant lemon flavor and it was soooo easy to make. Can’t wait to make this for dinner again!
If I had it my way, I would make this lemon pasta every night! 😅
I’m super impressed by how easy this recipe is! Lots of flavor, too! This is a keeper!
Yes, the sauce comes together easily and flawlessly! Perfect for weeknights.
We loved the fresh flavors and how quickly this came together as one of our sides. Thanks for sharing.
Happy you loved it Marta!
The flavors in this spaghetti are so light and lovely! Definitely on my list of quick dinners.