Spaghetti with Anchovies & Breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs on pasta are known in Italy as the poor man's cheese and they are often used instead for lactose-sensitive individuals. This treatment is quite popular in the southern regions of Italy, such as Sicily, Calabria and Basilicata.

Spaghetti with Anchovies & Breadcrumbs
Photo: Eva Kolenko
Active Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
25 mins


  • 8 cups water

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

  • cup coarse fresh whole-wheat breadcrumbs

  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt

  • 8 ounces whole-wheat spaghetti

  • 6 good-quality oil-packed anchovy fillets, drained

  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

  • ⅛-¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper or 1 dried Calabrian chile, crumbled

  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley


  1. Bring water to a boil in a large pot.

  2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a small skillet over medium-low heat. Add breadcrumbs and cook, stirring frequently, until light golden and crisp, about 5 minutes. Set aside.

  3. Add salt, then spaghetti to the boiling water. Cook according to package directions until al dente.

  4. Meanwhile, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add anchovies and garlic and cook until the anchovies dissolve into the oil and the garlic is golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Add crushed red pepper (or dried chile). Ladle in 1 cup pasta-cooking water and let simmer rapidly. Cook until reduced to about ½ cup, about 5 minutes.

  5. Use tongs to transfer the pasta to the sauce. Add parsley and toss to coat the pasta with the sauce, adding a little more pasta water if it seems dry. Add the reserved breadcrumbs and toss to mix.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

329 Calories
13g Fat
46g Carbs
10g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Serving Size 1 cup
Calories 329
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 46g 17%
Dietary Fiber 6g 21%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 10g 20%
Total Fat 13g 17%
Saturated Fat 2g 10%
Cholesterol 5mg 2%
Vitamin A 182IU 4%
Sodium 467mg 20%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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