Lemon Spaghetti

I adore this Lemon Spaghetti recipe, not only because it’s really good, but also because it comes together in a snap. It’s perfect for a quick weeknight dinner. Serve it up with a green salad and some nice crusty bread and your world is complete – for at least an hour or so.

Lemon Spaghetti is a gorgeously simple dish. It’s spaghetti noodles tossed in a creamy sauce flavored with lemon juice, lemon zest, Parmesan, garlic, and a hit of crushed red pepper.

Lemon Spaghetti

Yes, it is unmistakenly lemony – so if you’re not a fan of lemon, I’d steer clear – but the salt, garlic, and crushed red pepper really round it out.

I love this dish as a main (my resident carnivore even enjoys it) for lunch or dinner, but it would work equally well as a side, too. I think it’s perfect topped with parsley, but some strips of fresh basil instead (or in addition) would be terrific.

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Lemon Spaghetti

Spaghetti noodles tossed in a creamy sauce flavored with lemon juice, lemon zest, Parmesan cheese, garlic, and a little hit of crushed red pepper. The result is fresh, bright, and satisfying.


  • 1/2 pound spaghetti (usually half a box)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 large lemon, zested and juiced (approx. 1 tablespoon zest and 2 teaspoons juice)
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Small handful of parsley, chopped


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the spaghetti. Add salt to the water if desired.
  2. Heat a large deep skillet over low heat and add the olive oil, garlic, and crushed red pepper flakes. Cook for about five minutes, then add 3/4 cup of the water the pasta has been boiling in, along with the lemon juice and the heavy cream, to the skillet. Increase the heat to medium and bring to a boil, stirring frequently, until the sauce begins to thicken a bit. Add the lemon zest and half of the grated Parmesan cheese to the sauce. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Drain the pasta and add it to the skillet with the sauce. Remove the skillet from the heat and, using tongs, toss the pasta with the sauce for a minute or two until the pasta begins to soak the sauce.
  4. Top with the remaining cheese and parsley. Serve.

Adapted from The Food Network

// All images and text © for Kitchen Treaty.

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Kare is a vegetarian home cook living among carnivores. She loves creating irresistible and flexible recipes that help multi-vore families like hers keep the peace - deliciously.