I had my first dish of Amatriciana at Salumeria Rosi on the upper west side of NYC while there with my wife for my birthday. It was a fantastic riff on the traditional Roman version which is, a tomato based sauce with, red onion, guanciale, red pepper flakes, pecorino romano cheese, served with bucatini pasta. At Samumeria Rosi they serve this dish with ziti and there are several different types of meat in the sauce. Traditional or not, the dish was delicious and inspired my wife and I to make our own version of it at home.


  • Olive oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic sliced thin.
  • 1 small to medium red onion halved and sliced thin
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup of diced guanciale (substitute with soppressatta or other similar cured meats if you cant get guanciale)
  • 4oz pancetta
  • 2 cups crushed san marzano tomatoes, or any canned crushed tomatoes will do


Before starting the sauce, boil some water and begin cooking the bucatini or ziti, this is a very quick sauce recipe to make. In a pan on medium high heat, sauté and stir garlic, onions, and red pepper flakes in olive oil until the onions are softened. Then add your meat and mix until the fat has rendered out, and the meat is slightly crispy. Add crushed tomatoes to the pan with a pinch of salt and black pepper then stir. When the pasta is almost done finish the pasta in the pan by mixing it into the sauce until  the pasta is ‘al dente’. If the sauce is very thick stir some pasta water into the sauce to loosen it up a bit. Plate the pasta and finish with pecorino romano cheese.


  • This sauce does not take very long to make, that is why you should begin cooking pasta at the beginning so you don’t risk burning your sauce.
  • Finishing the pasta in the pan with the sauce helps the pasta absorb some sauce, as well as keeping an even temperature so you don’t have cold pasta with hot sauce.
  • Adding some starchy pasta water to the sauce will bind everything together, so that the sauce will stick to your pasta and not be watery mess.