Quick Spanakopita Carbonara Pasta Recipe: Spinach & Feta Pasta Celebrates Two Cuisines by Donna John

Quick Spanakopita Carbonara Pasta Recipe: Spinach & Feta Pasta Celebrates Two Cuisines

Spanakopita is a Greek spinach pie that's made with feta cheese. Carbonara is a Roman pasta dish that's made with eggs, cheese, prosciutto or other meat, and black pepper. What happens when you combine the two, minus the meat? This vegetarian spanakopita carbonara pasta recipe that shines a light on both!

This vegetarian spinach and feta pasta is a tasty combination of Greek flavors with the creaminess of a carbonara. For this pasta recipe, you'll need spaghetti noodles, butter, green onions, frozen spinach, eggs, feta cheese, fresh dill, lemon zest and lemon juice. After cooking the onion and spinach in butter, cooked pasta and a combination of eggs, feta cheese, dill and lemon zest are added. The pasta water is an important part here (don't throw it out!) because it helps create the creaminess of the dish. Finish the dish with more crumbled feta, lemon juice and butter. Don't forget to season with black pepper.

You could use fresh spinach instead of frozen. Just add the fresh spinach and stir until it wilts. If you don't like spinach, try kale or arugula. If you're allergic to eggs, you can omit them. You will have a slightly less creamy finished product, but it will still be delicious. Not a fan of butter? Use olive oil instead. Because of the saltiness of the feta cheese, you really don't need any additional salt in this dish. Serve this spanakopita pasta with your favorite side dishes.

Cuisine: Greek / Italian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 8 ounces spaghetti noodles
  • 4 tablespoons butter (divided)
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • 12 ounces frozen spinach
  • 2 eggs
  • 6 ounces crumbled feta cheese (divided)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill, plus more for garnish
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested (divided)
  • black pepper, to taste

Here's how to make it: 

  1. Cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and save 2 cups of the pasta cooking water.
  2. In a small bowl, mix together the fresh dill, lemon zest, half of the crumbled feta and eggs. Season with black pepper. Set aside.
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet. Add the green onions and cook, stirring, about 2 minutes. Add the spinach and cook until any moisture from the spinach evaporates, about 3 minutes.
  4. Add the cooked pasta to the skillet.
  5. Add a little of the hot pasta water to the egg and feta mixture to temper the eggs. Pour the mixture into the skillet. Stir well to coat all the pasta, then add about 1/2 cup of the pasta water. Cook, stirring, until it thickens, adding more pasta water, if needed.
  6. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and the lemon juice. Stir until butter has melted. Taste and add black pepper, if needed. 
  7. Top with remaining feta cheese.
  8. Garnish with additional chopped fresh dill, if desired.

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Elisa Schmitz
Wow, Donna John , some of my absolute favorite flavors in this dish! So excited to try this with gluten-free pasta. YUM!
A tale of two cuisines makes for one classic recipe, nice.

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