Garlic Chicken Fried Brown Rice Recipe

Background and History

Spaghetti Carbonara is a classic Italian pasta dish originating from Rome. It is traditionally made with eggs, hard cheese, pancetta, and pepper. The dish has a rich history, with its name possibly derived from “carbonari,” the Italian word for charcoal burners, as it was supposedly a hearty meal for Italian coal miners. Another theory suggests it was created during World War II when American soldiers stationed in Italy added bacon and eggs to pasta. Regardless of its exact origins, Spaghetti Carbonara has become a beloved staple of Italian cuisine.


4 people


Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Cooking Time

20 minutes


  • 400g (14 oz) spaghetti
  • 150g (5.3 oz) pancetta or guanciale, diced
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 100g (3.5 oz) Pecorino Romano cheese, finely grated
  • 50g (1.7 oz) Parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil


Cook the Pasta

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  • Add the spaghetti and cook until al dente according to the package instructions.

Prepare the Pancetta

  • While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.
  • Add the garlic cloves and cook until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. Remove the garlic and discard.
  • Add the diced pancetta to the pan and cook until crispy, about 5-7 minutes. Remove the pan from heat.

Make the Sauce

  • In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, egg yolk, Pecorino Romano, and Parmesan cheese. Add a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper.

Combine Pasta and Sauce

  • Drain the spaghetti, reserving about 1 cup of the pasta water.
  • Add the hot pasta to the pan with the pancetta and toss to coat.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and quickly pour in the egg and cheese mixture, tossing everything together. The residual heat from the pasta will cook the eggs, creating a creamy sauce.
  • Add reserved pasta water a little at a time if the sauce needs to be thinned out.


  • Divide the Spaghetti Carbonara among plates.
  • Garnish with extra grated Pecorino Romano and a sprinkle of black pepper.
  • Serve immediately.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

  • Calories: 650
  • Protein: 27g
  • Carbohydrates: 74g
  • Fat: 27g
  • Fiber: 3g
  • Sodium: 850mg


  • For an authentic taste, use guanciale (cured pork cheek) instead of pancetta if available.
  • Freshly ground black pepper is essential for the traditional flavor of Carbonara.
  • Avoid adding cream; the creaminess of Carbonara comes from the eggs and cheese.

Allergy Warning

  • Contains eggs, dairy, and gluten.
  • Ensure all ingredients are free from cross-contamination if cooking for someone with severe allergies.

Is brown rice better for fried rice?

Brown rice can be a healthier option for fried rice due to its higher fiber content and nutritional benefits. Its slightly chewy texture and nutty flavor add an interesting dimension to the dish. However, it takes longer to cook and can be a bit firmer than white rice, so it depends on personal preference.

What is the secret ingredient in fried rice?

The secret ingredient in many delicious fried rice recipes is sesame oil. It adds a rich, nutty flavor that enhances the overall taste of the dish. Another key ingredient is a splash of soy sauce for umami depth.

What gives fried rice its brown color?

Fried rice gets its brown color primarily from soy sauce. When the soy sauce is added and mixed with the rice, it imparts a rich, savory brown hue. Additionally, the browning occurs due to the Maillard reaction as the rice cooks in a hot pan.

How to flavor plain brown rice?

To flavor plain brown rice, cook it in chicken or vegetable broth instead of water. You can also add aromatics like garlic, onions, or bay leaves during cooking. After cooking, mix in herbs, a squeeze of lemon juice, or a drizzle of soy sauce or sesame oil for added flavor.

Should I soak brown rice before cooking?

Soaking brown rice before cooking is optional but recommended. Soaking for 30 minutes to an hour can reduce cooking time and result in a softer texture. It can also help remove some of the phytic acid, improving the rice’s digestibility.

Is brown rice healthy?

Yes, brown rice is considered healthy. It retains the bran and germ layers, making it higher in fiber, vitamins, and minerals compared to white rice. Brown rice is also a good source of magnesium, phosphorus, and antioxidants.

What sauce goes with brown rice?

Brown rice pairs well with a variety of sauces. Soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, and tamari are classic options. You can also try sriracha, tahini, or a homemade vinaigrette made with olive oil, lemon juice, and herbs.

What is the best way to eat brown rice?

The best way to eat brown rice is as a base for stir-fries, curries, or grain bowls. It also works well in salads, soups, and casseroles. Pairing brown rice with a variety of vegetables, proteins, and flavorful sauces can create a balanced and tasty meal.

How do you make brown rice not taste bland?

To make brown rice more flavorful, cook it in broth instead of water and add seasonings like garlic, onion, bay leaves, or a pinch of salt. After cooking, mix in fresh herbs, a splash of soy sauce, a bit of butter, or a drizzle of olive oil to enhance its taste.

Does brown rice taste better than white rice?

Taste is subjective and depends on personal preference. Brown rice has a nuttier flavor and chewier texture compared to the milder taste and softer texture of white rice. Some people prefer the heartiness of brown rice, while others favor the more neutral profile of white rice.

Lysander Rothwell
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Lysander Rothwell, a passionate Food Enthusiast, shares his culinary adventures and expertise on his website. With a flair for exploring diverse cuisines and flavors, Lysander offers insights, recipes, and tips to inspire fellow food lovers. Through his engaging content, he aims to celebrate the joy of cooking and eating, inviting readers to embark on delightful culinary journeys with him.