Pasta Aglio e Olio with Asparagus and Fried Onion Topping

Aglio e olio is a traditional italian pasta dish from Naples that simply means garlic and oil. With asparagus readily available due to the Spring season I knew I wanted to incorporate it in this dish. However, the real surprise was the fried onion topping and how well it worked finishing off this dish. Enjoy friends!


1 (8oz) box of Spaghetti

1/3 Cup olive oil

1 Cup fried onions

3 large garlic cloves, minced

1/4 Teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 Cup Parmesan, shredded

1 Bunch of asparagus, cut into 1 inch pieces


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Drop in cut asparagus and cook for 3 minutes. Remove asparagus from water with slotted spoon and set aside.
  2. While the water is still boiling add a generous amount of salt to season the pasta. Drop in the spaghetti and follow the boxed directions to cook al dente.
  3. In a separate saucepan add the oil, garlic and chili flakes. Saute for 3-5 minutes on medium low heat until the garlic just turns golden but not brown.
  4. Add 1/2 Cup pasta water to the saucepan with oil and stir. Turn down heat to low and add the spaghetti and asparagus. Toss.
  5. Remove from heat and add the Parmesan. Toss again.
  6. Serve the pasta on a shallow bowl or plate and top with 1 Cup fried onions. *optional: sprinkle additional red pepper flakes and/or shredded Parmesan.
  7. Serve immediately.

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