Bucatini all’Amatriciana

close-up shot of the final dish in a skillet.

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5 from 2 reviews

This is a quick and easy pasta dish for two with simple ingredients and a little kick of heat from some crushed red pepper flakes. Bring the pasta water to a boil while you prep the ingredients for the sauce and, once you add the pasta to cook, the sauce comes together by the time the pasta is tender.


  • 5 ounces bucatini
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 8 ounces diced pancetta
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • 3 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste (see note)
  • 3/4 cup tomato puree
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add the bucatini and cook according to package directions.
  2. In a large pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the pancetta and cook until it renders it’s fat and starts to turn crispy. Add the onions, garlic, and crushed red pepper and cook them for a minute or so, just until the garlic is fragrant.
  3. Add the tomato puree and water and stir to combine. Increase the heat to bring the sauce to a simmer. Simmer the sauce while you wait for the pasta to finish cooking.
  4. Add the balsamic vinegar to the sauce and stir to combine. Add the cooked pasta and toss it in the sauce until the pasta is evenly coated. To serve, top each serving with the grated cheese and chopped parsley.


A 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes add a nice kick of heat. Start with less if you’re worried about the amount of heat – you can always add more after you give the sauce a taste before serving.

If you want to use jarred marinara sauce, just cook the pancetta in the oil, add the sauce, simmer, and then continue with the recipe as written.

Recipe adapted from Food Network