Healthier veggie carbonara served in 3 bowls

Healthier veggie carbonara

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
(14 ratings)

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 10 mins


Serves 4

Enjoy this healthier veggie carbonara with mushrooms and courgettes for an easy family meal. It takes just 30 minutes, so is ideal on busy weeknights

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: Per serving

  • kcal552
  • fat20g
  • saturates9g
  • carbs59g
  • sugars4g
  • fibre8g
  • protein29g
  • salt0.8g
Save to My Good Food
Please sign in or register to save recipes.


  • 4 medium courgettes (use a mix of yellow and green if you can get them)



    The courgette is a variety of cucurbit, which means it's from the same family as cucumber,…

  • 300g spaghetti
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 160g vegetarian parmesan-style cheese
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • small bunch fresh lemon thyme or thyme, leaves picked
  • 200g chestnut mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • small bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped (optional)
  • ½ lemon, zested and juiced



    Oval in shape with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile…


  1. Put a large pan of salted water on to boil. Halve the courgettes lengthways and scoop out and discard the core, then slice the courgettes at an angle into small diagonal pieces. Put the spaghetti in the pan of boiling water and cook following pack instructions.

  2. To make the creamy carbonara sauce, put the egg yolks in a bowl, add half of the grated cheese, and mix with a fork. Add up to 3 tbsp water to make the sauce less thick. Season and set aside.

  3. Heat a large frying pan on a medium to high heat and pour in a little olive oil. Fry the courgette slices and thyme leaves with a good grinding of black pepper for a minute or two until the courgette starts to soften, then add the mushrooms. Fry for 2-3 mins until golden and slightly softened. For the last minute of the cooking, add the garlic.

  4. Working quickly, drain the pasta, reserving a little of the cooking water. Toss the pasta in the pan with the courgettes and mushrooms, then remove from the heat and add a ladleful of the reserved cooking water and the egg and cheese sauce. Add the fresh parsley, if using, and the lemon zest and juice, then sprinkle over most of the remaining cheese. Stir everything together quickly to coat the pasta. The egg will cook if the pasta is still hot. If you’re worried about it, put back on the heat for 1 min.

  5. Pour in a little more of the cooking water, if needed. You should have a silky and shiny sauce. Season to taste, then sprinkle with a little more cheese to serve. Eat straight away, as the sauce can become thick and stodgy if left for too long.

You may also like

Comments, questions and tips

Sign in or create your My Good Food account to join the discussion.
Crimson Fury
8th Jun, 2020
Why would you scoop out and discard the core of the courgette?! It's a tasty treat for you and the family!
Lois Cooper's picture
Lois Cooper
2nd Jun, 2020
Really nice meal!!! Made a few adjustments, I added chilli in at the same time as the garlic and also put chilli oil on at the end when serving. Used pepper as well and it tasted really good!!
Frantic Flapjack
29th Jul, 2019
The sauce was good but the vegetables weren't anything special. Working hard to eat the courgette glut but won't be making this again.
17th May, 2018
Delicious recipe! I added half a purple onion, frying it as the first step which added a bit more flavour. Had no chestnut mushrooms so just used button mushrooms, which were still tasty. I also think the recipe would benefit from a hint of chilli. I added baby frozen peas to boost the vegetable content and only used one egg yolk and it was still a great dish!
19th Feb, 2018
Not bad and will be good for the inevitable glut we get every year from our veg patch. I've made this a couple of times, as is written here and once with the addition of bacon which obviously won't appeal to vegetarians but was nice
1st Feb, 2018
Amazing result from this recipe first time round, so easy. Even used the left overs for lunch the next day and still just as good.
30th Jan, 2018
Zoe ML
18th Jul, 2019
It is not obvious or detailed out in the recipe what you do with the garlic. On the ingredients list it seems that they remain whole - in a traditional carbonara you use the garlics to flavour the dish but scoop them out at the last minute, before combining whats been fried / boiled and mixed together. Needs refining to be more clear please!
goodfoodteam's picture
22nd Jul, 2019
Thanks for pointing this out Zoe. The garlic should be crushed and we have amended the recipe accordingly.
Be the first to suggest a tip for this recipe...Got your own twist on this recipe? Or do you have suggestions for possible swaps and additions? We’d love to hear your ideas.
Want to receive regular food and recipe web notifications from us?