Spring Pasta With Peas & Pancetta

Cartwheel Pasta with Peas & Pancetta

This Spring Pasta with Peas & Pancetta is the ultimate spring dinner.  Just look at the colors, aren’t the purdy?  The dish just screams out “FRESH”.  When I hear “Spring Pasta”, this Pasta with Peas is the sort of dish that comes up in my mind.  As a child I never was a big fan of peas, I have to admit it.  And even now, a side heap of peas still doesn’t do it for me.  However, peas as an element to add texture, flavor and color to a dish by incorporating them in it, that is a different story.

This dish incorporates peas, sugar snap peas, mint to give the pasta flavor and freshness.  The pancetta adds a bit of salt and just a little kick to it, perfectly complemented by the nuttiness of the Parmesan.  The original recipe asked for 1 1/2 cups shelled edamame peas, but those I didn’t happen to have.  Also, instead of fresh, it suggested frozen peas.  I had fresh, so I used those instead.  I mean, see for yourself, don’t they look amazing?

Spring Pasta with Peas & Pancetta


  • 1 lb. wagon wheel-shaped pasta (rotelle)
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil, plus 1/4 cup
  • 8 oz. pancetta, finely diced
  • 1 large or 2 small shallots, finely diced.
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 cups (5 oz.) sugar snap peas, cut into 1-inch pieces
  •  1 cup (or a little more) fresh peas
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmesan
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves



  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.  Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, 8-10 minutes.
  • Drain and reserve 1 cup of the pasta water.
  • In a large skillet, heat 1 tbsp. oil over medium-high heat.  Add the pancetta and cook, stirring frequently, until golden and crisp, 6-8 minutes.
  • Using a slotted spoon, remove the pancetta and drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
  • Add the shallots to the pan and cook until soft, 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the broth and scrape up the brown bits that cling to the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon.
  • Stir in the snap peas and simmer until tender, about 2 minutes.
  • Add the pasta, cooked pancetta, peas, Parmesan, the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil, salt, and mint leaves.
  • Toss until coated, adding the reserved pasta water, 1 tbsp. at a time, to loosen the sauce.
  • Transfer to a large bowl and serve.

Serves: 4-6


(Recipe by: Giada De Laurentiis, adapted by Marieke, aka HRH Mommy)


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One Response to Spring Pasta With Peas & Pancetta

  1. Pamela S says:

    This sounds so delicious.There’s nothing like fresh!

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