Celia’s Simply Irresistible Spaghetti

Celia's Spaghetti Recipe

Kids and kids-at-heart can’t resist this oh-so-simple yet ah-so-delicious spaghetti that our daughter, Celia, begs me to make for her. If by some miracle there are any leftovers, I pack them in her lunch. Given the chance, she’ll even have it for breakfast. I often serve it with roasted asparagus.–Aviva Goldfarb

LC Add a Little Oomph Note

We’re all for simplicity. But to lend a little more oomph to this pasta for not-so-picky palates, consider author Aviva Goldfarb’s suggestions to serve it with a pinch of black pepper, crushed red pepper flakes, toasted pine nuts, canned clams, or crumbled bacon. Um, one at a time, please.

Simply Irresistible Spaghetti Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 5 M
  • 20 M
  • Serves 8


  • 1 package (16 ounces) spaghetti
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons minced garlic (about 4 to 6 cloves), or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, for serving


  • 1. Cook the spaghetti according to the package directions.
  • 2. After the spaghetti has been cooking for about 5 minutes, heat the butter and olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. After the butter has melted, stir in the garlic and cook just until fragrant, 30 to 60 seconds. Reduce the heat to low and keep warm.
  • 3. Drain the spaghetti, return it to the pot, and stir in the garlic butter and the salt. Toss with the parsley, and serve with the Parmesan on the side.
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Recipe Testers Reviews

This is a good weeknight staple. Easy, quick, and made from pretty much what one has on hand in the pantry. It’s quite garlicky for my liking, so the next time I make it I’ll cut the garlic back by half. I added cracked black pepper to this instead of pepperoncino and a bit of the pasta cooking water to make it a bit saucier. I also added the cheese to the pasta prior to tossing and served extra alongside, as I’m a cheese fiend. I served some grilled garlic shrimp and rapini along with this and it made for a satisfying and quick meal.


  1. I did everything this recipe said and I don’t know I guess i just didn’t like it. After reading the first comment I put less garlic but it was still EXTREMELY garlicky. The pasta had NO flavor it was just like eating pasta with oil and Parmesan cheese so i did add cheese and that made it better. This is a good recipe but I think a lot more needs to be done to add flavor.

    1. Danielle, sorry to hear this wasn’t to your liking. Some recipes are intentionally quite simple in flavor so as to let the ingredients come through. Especially a recipe like this that was designed for a young, finicky palate. Hope you try some of our other pasta recipes, I think you’ll find several things more to your liking…

  2. This tastes great. I made it to compliment Parmesan chicken. I think it taste good if it’s accompanied by something else.

    1. Analuisa, so glad you like this! And yes, definitely it’s a lovely complement to something else, although we know lots of kids who like it straight up, natch.

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