When it comes to comfort food, a nicely done pasta bake may just be one of the best. The satiating carb-y pasta blends perfectly with whatever cheese, meats, or veggies you have on hand. And to bring it all together, everything is baked to crispy perfection. But when you add in the savory umami bomb that you get with carbonara, it somehow becomes more perfect, if such a thing is possible.
Most pasta bakes are pretty easy to put together, even with the few added steps required for carbonara. Now we’re bringing you a list of the best carbonara pasta bakes that are sure to ‘wow’ your family and friends.
1. Carbonara Pasta Bake
Our list starts out with a pretty straightforward carbonara bake that takes all the basics of spaghetti carbonara and transforms them into a gooey, cheesy, sumptuous bake. With eggs, cheddar, and parmesan, your creamy sauce is completed.
Ham adds a salty, meaty component while tomatoes provide a fresh bit of sweetness. You can substitute the ham out for bacon, and standard penne would work in place of Campanelle egg noodles. But no matter what changes you make, this is an easy dish with plenty of flavor.
If you prefer a browner, crispier top, throw this under the under the broiler for a few minutes at the end.
Get the full recipe and directions from Good To
2. Chicken Carbonara Pasta Bake
Don’t mistake this for a lighter, healthier version just because it has chicken. This recipe adds chicken while still using bacon to provide that salty, cured flavor that you just can’t get enough of. By using penne, you get a thicker, toothier bite than you would with a traditional spaghetti carbonara.
This recipe calls for jarred Alfredo sauce, so you can save quite a bit of time – just make sure you get something rich, creamy, and delicious. Most of the prep work involves slicing the meat and grating some parmesan, so your active work should only take about 20 minutes. After that, just pop it in the oven and let the heat do the work and you’re good to go.
If you’re feeling adventurous, you can make the Alfredo sauce from scratch; just know that it will add to the overall cook time (but may be even more delicious!)
Get the full recipe and directions from Pillsbury
3. Chicken Carbonara Spaghetti Pie
You may be wondering just what in the world a spaghetti pie is, and we don’t blame you. No, this isn’t a sweet dessert with spaghetti added in – it’s actually a savory pie with a crust made out of spaghetti noodles. So, as far as crust substitutes go, this isn’t exactly a low carb offering. That doesn’t make it any less delicious though (it probably makes it more delicious, as far as we’re concerned).
The spaghetti crust gets nice and crispy around the edges but maintains its softer structure along the bottom. It is then topped with a delectable mix of sauce, bacon, chicken, vegetables, and multiple cheeses. Like we said, don’t expect to run a marathon after this. But do expect to be amazed by a beautiful array of flavors and textures that complement each other perfectly!
Get the full recipe and directions from A Family Feast
4. Creamy Baked Carbonara Mac and Cheese
Even as adults, we often find ourselves craving macaroni and cheese. This dish proves that it isn’t just a kids’ meal and that it can be done in seemingly gourmet fashion. Another easy recipe that can be thrown together in under an hour, you’ll be dreaming about this flavorful treat long after the casserole dish has been emptied.
White cheddar and parmesan melt perfectly into the roux, making a simple but delicious sauce. Eggs, bacon, and peas are added to the sauce for the perfect balance of flavors – salty, savory, and sweet.
If you prefer a little kick to your mac and cheese, you can always add some crushed red pepper, but we really think this is a wonderful dish as-is.
Get the full recipe and directions from Spoon Fork Bacon
5. Spaghetti Carbonara Frittata
This dish strays from the standard pasta bake structure to bring you spaghetti carbonara in the form of a nice, fluffy frittata. The eggs do a wonderful job of holding all the ingredients together – which include spaghetti, diced pancetta, and pecorino cheese.
While you can use parmesan instead, we find that the pecorino gives a nutty flavor profile that goes well with simple but delicious nature of the dish. If you can’t find pancetta, bacon or ham would work, or you could look for guanciale if you want something a little fancier and even more traditional.
Get the full recipe and directions from Food 52
6. Spaghetti Squash Carbonara
If you’ve ever used spaghetti squash as a low carb substitute for the regular noodle, you know just how good (and versatile) it can be. That continues with this spaghetti squash carbonara, giving you all the flavor and satisfaction of a traditional one without all of the guilt.
This recipe sticks close to the traditional method but uses sour cream and onion to bring a little bit more flavor to the squash. By the time you take this out of the oven, you’ll be ready to dig in based on the smell alone. It really is a dish that will have everyone in the house drooling.
A quick trip under the broiler is optional, but we like the bubbly yet crispy texture it brings to the surface.
Get the full recipe and directions from The Kitchn
7. Tagliatelle Carbonara Gluten-Free Pasta Bake
Those who follow a gluten-free diet often have to read through these lists in despair or have to watch others eat amazing pasta dishes with jealousy. Fortunately, this gluten-free tagliatelle version can more than make up for all of the missing out you’ve had to do.
Other than buying a special brand of tagliatelle, this is a pretty straightforward interpretation of the dish, allowing you to enjoy each of the flavors without being overpowered by any single one. Sweet peas, salty ham, and nutty cheese make for a combination that you will not soon forget. You can have this ready to go in just over an hour, with very little active time, so it’s a perfect weeknight recipe!
Get the full recipe and directions from Jovial Foods
We love how quick and easy pasta bakes are to whip up for dinner, but a carbonara pasta bake feels like such an amazing indulgence. We hope you liked this list of our favorite recipes, and a curious to know which one you’re going to try first!
If you like this post, we also recommend checking out our favorite Pasta Cakes post.