Classic spaghetti carbonara is given a vegetarian twist in this mushroom carbonara that’s loaded with tender mushrooms, tangy sun-dried tomatoes, and a rich Parmesan sauce.
Your pasta life is about to be dramatically improved. Like night and day improved.
Not that any form of pasta really sucks, buuuut…this carbonara really just takes it all.
I’m talking rich, herby Parmesan sauce coating every inch of these noodles with plenty of garlicky mushrooms + sun-dried tomatoes in every bite.
Dreamy doesn’t even come close to properly justifying this carbonara.
Not only is is freaking DELICIOUS, but we’re doing a little spin on traditional carbonara today and replacing the classic pancetta with button mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes.
Thus, keeping this carbonara vegetarian and *somewhat* better for you. Quite a step up if you ask me.
This Mushroom Carbonara features…
- Tender spaghetti noodles coated in a creamy Parmesan egg sauce
- Garlicky tender button mushrooms
- Soft, tangy sun-dried tomato slices
- Lots of fresh parsley and Parmesan cheese
Making the Mushroom Carbonara
(scroll to the bottom of the post for the full recipe!)
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Eggs – eggs are the base to your sauce so make sure they’re fresh.
- Parmesan – you can’t beat the quality of grating your own Parmesan so definitely go for that if possible.
- Mushrooms – you will need about a pound of mushrooms (more on that below)
- Olive Oil – we love extra-virgin in this recipe, but any kind will work!
- Aromatics – lots of fresh garlic + shallot.
- Sun-Dried Tomatoes – go for oil-packed tomatoes if you can find them but otherwise, you can rehydrate regular sun-dried by soaking them in boiling water 5 minutes.
- Pasta – spaghetti is traditionally used in carbonara, however, any shape will definitely work here.
- Parsley – the fresh parsley adds a final little herby kick to cut that richness from the sauce.
Choosing Your Mushrooms
I recommend going for a simple, cheap mushroom in this recipe such as button or cremini mushrooms.
Any type of mushroom will work in this recipe though, so if you have access to a wider variety of mushrooms feel free to mix and match different kinds.
Tips for Mastering Carbonara
Carbonara pasta is a fairly time-sensitive pasta because we’re relying on the heat from the cooked pasta to cook the egg sauce.
My best advice is to have ALL your components for this recipe prepped and ready to go before you start cooking. Here’s your timeline –>
- Grate your Parm, make your egg sauce, saute your mushrooms + aromatics, and mince your parsley before you even put the water on to boil for the pasta.
- Cook the pasta and go for JUST below an al-dente cook. You will finish cooking the pasta in the mushroom mixture with a little pasta water.
- Allow the pasta to cool offheat for 2 minutes before adding the egg sauce. If you try to add the egg sauce when the pasta is too hot you will break the sauce and end up with scrambled eggs.
- Once pasta has cooled 2 minutes, drizzle in the egg sauce while rapidly stirring pasta with a wooden spoon until a creamy sauce forms.
- Thin the sauce as necessary with additional pasta water, fold in fresh parsley and it’s ready!
Note: carbonara does not keep very well so I recommend enjoying it immediately once it’s ready.
Don’t forget the extra Parm on top of your bowl! So very necessary.
Y’all, the richness of this carbonara paired with the earthiness from the mushrooms and the pleasant acidity from the tomatoes is almost unreal…it is SO freaking delicious!
Plus we’re making this whole pot of pasta in THIRTY minutes, start to finish! How’s that for an easy as heck date night??
I don’t know about you but I’m planning a date night for just myself and this pasta.
A few similar recipes where mushroom is the star!
- Balsamic Caramelized Onion Mushroom Mac ‘n’ Cheese
- Shiitake Mushroom Ragu
- Caramelized Onion Mushroom Crispy Smashed Potatoes
Sun-Dried Tomato Mushroom Carbonara
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- 3 large egg yolks
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup finely-grated Parmesan cheese
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 lb cremini or button mushrooms, stems removed and mushrooms torn into 1-in pieces
- 1 medium shallot, finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, removed from oil and roughly chopped
- 12 oz spaghetti (or any other pasta you like!)
- 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
- Additional grated Parmesan cheese for topping
- In a medium bowl, whisk egg yolks, egg, and Parmesan until completely smooth. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
- In a Dutch oven or large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat until pan is hot and olive oil is shimmery. Add mushrooms to pan and saute, stirring mushrooms occasionally until they are lightly-browned and tender (about 3-5 minutes)
- Add shallot, garlic, and tomatoes to mushrooms and saute an additional 1-2 minutes until fragrant and a light golden brown. Season mushrooms with salt and pepper to taste.
- Bring a pot of lightly-salted water to a boil and cook pasta until just barely al-dente. Reserve 1-1/2 cups pasta cooking water and drain pasta.
- Add pasta and 1/2 cup reserved pasta water to mushroom mixture. Cook over medium heat 2-3 minutes until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and allow to cool 2 minutes.
- Whisk remaining 1/4 cup pasta water into egg yolks until sauce is completely smooth. Fold egg sauce into pasta mixture, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until a creamy sauce forms and coats pasta. (drizzle in additional pasta water if needed to loosen sauce)
- Stir parsley into carbonara and season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Serve carbonara immediately while hot with additional Parmesan grated on top. Enjoy!