Creamy bacon and mushroom pasta is the stuff dreams are made of! This bacon and mushroom pasta has crispy bits of bacon or pancetta smothered in a garlic sauce made with fried mushrooms and fresh herbs. It's the best creamy treat for a weekend or date night, and it comes together in under 30 minutes.
This creamy bacon and mushroom pasta is the perfect quick and easy dinner that really tastes like a treat. Whenever I make it, I'm blown away by how the flavors of fresh thyme and rosemary blend with a mix of white-wine-infused mushrooms and crispy bacon. Everyone I've ever served this bacon mushroom pasta to said it was the best pasta they've ever eaten.
What goes into this pasta?
As you may have noticed by now, if you've been on this blog before, I like to switch things up quite a bit, and this creamy pasta recipe is no exception. I sometimes make it with bacon lardons, and I sometimes make it with pancetta.
It's really delicious either way, so use your favourite type of bacon. You can use bacon lardons or cubed pancetta, or you can make it with strips of bacon that you cut into little pieces — the choice is all yours.
I typically use short pasta for this recipe, like the beautiful orecchiette you see in the photos, which I like a lot because they do a great job at capturing the sauce and bits of bacon. However, you can make it with long pasta, too, like spaghetti or tagliatelle, for example.
Fresh herbs are the secret behind the explosive taste of this pancetta and mushroom pasta, and I really don't skimp on them. I use a full tablespoon of fresh thyme and another one of fresh rosemary.
I mince the herbs finely, so you can feel the flavour in every bite. Even though two tablespoons of fresh herbs may sound like a bit much, don't worry; they're in no way overpowering. You can also substitute rosemary and thyme with dried versions or use an Italian herbs mix instead.
You'll also need a bit of dry white wine for this recipe, but if you don't want to use alcohol, you can substitute it with the same quantity of chicken or vegetable stock.
How do you make this creamy bacon mushroom pasta?
This pasta is ready in under 30 minutes, and you can make the sauce approximately in the same time it takes to bring a pot of water to a boil and boil the pasta.
You start by frying the bacon or pancetta in a dash of olive oil until crispy. Remove the bacon and set aside, then continue to cook in the same pan. Fry the mushrooms in the fat left by the bacon, then add garlic, herbs, and white wine.
When the wine has evaporated, add the cream and continue to cook on low heat until the sauce thickens. Add the bacon back and transfer the pasta to the pan, adding a bit of pasta water if necessary. Stir in the parmesan and fresh parsley and you're done. Delicious pancetta mushroom pasta in under half an hour.
Recipe notes and tips
- You can add some baby spinach or rocket (arugula) to this pasta if you want. Add it right at the end because it only takes a minute to cook.
- I use closed cup (crimini) mushrooms for this recipe, but other types work great, too. Examples include portobello mushrooms, shiitake, a mix of wild mushrooms, and even oyster mushrooms for that meaty texture.
- Only add salt to the pasta at the very end. The bacon and parmesan both have lots of salt, and the pasta is cooked in salty water, too. I typically find that this pasta only needs a pinch of extra salt, if at all.
- Make it vegetarian by skipping the bacon and starting straight with the mushrooms sauteed in olive oil.
If you liked this creamy bacon and mushroom pasta recipe, you might also like:
- 250 g (9 oz) pasta
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 170 g (6 oz) bacon lardons or pancetta
- 250 g (9 oz) closed cup (crimini) mushrooms, sliced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced
- 75 ml (¼ cup) dry white wine
- 200 ml (1 cup) double (heavy) cream
- 30 g (1 ounce) Parmesan, grated
- 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, minced
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Bring a large pot of water to boil, salt it generously, and boil the pasta according to the instructions on the package. Reserve some pasta water before draining. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large pan and fry the bacon for 4-5 minutes until crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan with a slotted spoon and set it aside.
- Add the sliced mushrooms to the same pan and fry them in the fat left by bacon until slightly golden. Next, add the garlic and cook for another minute until fragrant.
- Stir in the thyme and rosemary and continue to cook for 1-2 minutes. Pour in the white wine and cook until the alcohol evaporates.
- Lower the heat, then stir in the double cream. Cook for 1-2 minutes until the sauce thickens, then add the bacon back in.
- Next, transfer the boiled pasta to the pot and stir until well covered in sauce. If the sauce looks too thick, add some pasta water and continue to cook on low heat until the sauce has the right consistency.
- Stir in the grated Parmesan and fresh parsley, season to taste, and serve immediately.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 606Total Fat: 43gSaturated Fat: 20gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 21gCholesterol: 111mgSodium: 945mgCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 3gSugar: 4gProtein: 24g
Nutritional information is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator.