Bacon Asparagus Pasta is a very simple pasta recipe with great flavors!
This amazing pasta dish comes together in quickly making it a perfect mid week meal. With only 6 ingredients, you’ll have dinner on the table in less than 30 minutes!
This dish pairs really well with my amazing tortellini alla panna, mix and match and serve a feast next meal time!
Table of Contents
Why you will love this recipe
This sauce is simple and fast but it’s also very tasty! Make this during spring when asparagus is at it’s peak and well priced and you will have a meal that everyone will enjoy.
When I need a quick but tasty meal, I often turn to pasta recipes like my Pasta and Peas. This Bacon Asparagus Pasta also ticks all the boxes. Plus you get a great, big serve of wonderful, nutritious asparagus. Portions can be adjusted however I always like to have as much asparagus as pasta. What I mean by that, is one pound (500 grams) asparagus for one pound (500 grams) pasta.
This is a really easy pasta recipe that can be used for entertaining as well. Tagliatelle are delicious but you can impress your guests by substituting more unusual homemade pasta. Try garganelli or busiate for something different.
Asparagus is the main ingredient in this pasta recipe so when asparagus comes on sale, it’s the perfect time to make this delicious Bacon Asparagus Pasta.
Asparagus can be tricky if you have never cooked with this vegetable before. Then end of the asparagus is quite woody and you could just cut it off with a knife. But how much do you cut off?
Luckily, asparagus are a very clever vegetable. If you bend an asparagus spear at the woody end it will snap exactly where the woody part ends and the juicy part begins. Clever, isn’t it?
This recipe uses bacon however you can easily substitute pancetta which is available readily in most supermarkets.
And while Parmigiano Reggiano is delicious on many pastas, don’t overlook the amazing flavor of Pecorino Romano. Pecorino Romano would be an excellent substitute for Parmigiano Reggiano in this recipe.
Tips for Success
How many times I’ve heard it said that asparagus is bland. Everything is bland if you don’t season it properly.
- Don’t be afraid of salt if you have no medical reason to avoid it.
- Salt brings out the natural flavors in food.
- Adding a little sprinkle of salt when cooking the asparagus draws out the moisture and which assists in softening the asparagus
- Also adding a little salt when cooking the asparagus results in a more flavorsome sauce
- Offer a bowl of crispy pangrattato and extra Parmigiano Reggiano at the table so that diners can add whatever they enjoy.
Hint: It is important when cooking Bacon Asparagus Pasta that you taste it and adjust the salt and pepper. Because this recipe uses bacon which is naturally salty, you won’t need quite as much salt. This is why you need to taste everything you cook.
More recipes like this
In spring when asparagus is plentiful and inexpensive, I make this pasta at least once a week. And if you are an asparagus aficionado as much as I am you will also love this Prosciutto wrapped Asparagus. Once you know how to prepare asparagus, you’ll be stocking up on lots of asparagus. I prefer to store my asparagus wrapped in paper towel and then slipped into a plastic bag. I find the paper towel keeps the asparagus fresh for longer.
In summer, I turn to Spaghetti alla Nerano which makes great use of zucchini. Or these delicious Giant Cheese Stuffed Shells which are always popular. Be sure to also try my tagliatelle bolognese pasta and pasta al forno, these dishes are always winners in my house!
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Bacon Asparagus Pasta
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 garlic clove sliced
- 7 ounces bacon (170 grams) sliced into fine strips
- 1 pound asparagus (500 grams)
- ⅓ cup Parmigiano Reggiano plus extra for serving
- 1 pound linguine pasta (500 grams)
- In a cold frying pan or skillet add oil and garlic. Let it heat up gently over medium heat. When aromatic which won’t be long, add bacon.
- Fry for a few minutes until the bacon is starting to brown and there is a few browned bits stuck to the bottom of the pan – this is flavor!
- While the bacon is cooking, snap the woody ends of the asparagus and throw away. Wash asparagus under running water. Chop off the tender tops (about 3 or 4 cm) and reserve for later. Finley slice up the rest.
- Add finely chopped asparagus stalks and a pinch of salt to the garlic and bacon. The salt will draw out the moisture and help the asparagus cook.
- While the asparagus is cooking bring a large pot of salted water to the boil.
- When water is boiling add pasta
While pasta is cooking, attend to Asparagus sauce
- As the asparagus becomes tender, crush with the back of a fork. If the asparagus dries out add a little of the pasta cooking water.
Back to the pasta
- Two minutes before the pasta is done add the asparagus tips.
Finish Asparagus sauce
- Into the softened asparagus stir Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and 2 tablespoons of pasta cooking water to create a light but creamy sauce to coat the pasta.
- Taste the sauce. Add freshly ground pepper and salt, if needed.
Drain pasta and finish dish
- Drain the pasta and the asparagus tips.
- Return pasta and asparagus tips to the cooking saucepan. Add asparagus sauce and stir gently to coat pasta.
- Serve immediately with extra grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
- If you can find pancetta, use that instead of the bacon – it will be delicious
- Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese can be substituted for Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.
Nutritional Estimate Per Serving
Nutritional information is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. For accurate results, it is recommended that the nutritional information be calculated based on the ingredients and brands you use.
This updated recipe was first published on October 18, 2016