A must-make recipe before the winter ends: rosemary honey butter pasta! It’s a really simple pasta dish with minimal ingredients and lots of sweet + savory flavor, full of crispy mushrooms and a very generous amount of parmesan cheese. Quick enough for a weeknight, but special enough for a winter dinner party!
It’s very likely that on any given week of winter, I’m making pasta. It’s warming, comforting, and always delicious…and this rosemary honey butter pasta with crispy mushrooms is no exception.
I first made this dish right around the holidays. All of the baking was inspiring me to add a little bit of sweetness into my savory dishes. And being one who absolutely loves anything sweet and savory (especially the combo of honey + butter), creating this recipe was a no-brainer. A simple pasta dish made of spaghetti tossed in a silky sweet honey butter sauce that’s been infused with rosemary – what’s not to love?
Add some crispy mushrooms into the mix and you’ve got yourself a perfect amount of earthiness to balance out the slightly sweet sauce. I add lots of freshly grated parmesan cheese for a salty bite and a little black pepper for a peppery finish. Nothing crazy here, but I find the combination to be so, so dreamy.
a few honey butter pasta tips…
- Cook the pasta in *heavily* salted water – this pasta is simple, so the spaghetti itself needs lots of seasoning from the cooking water.
- Allow the mushrooms to fully crisp – the contrast of smooth sauce to crispy mushrooms really makes for a lovely texture; use a large skillet, working in two batches if needed so the mushrooms have enough space, and make sure your oil is sizzling hot before adding them in.
- Don’t forget to reserve some pasta water before draining – starchy pasta water is added to the honey butter mixture to create the sauce.
- Use high-quality parmesan cheese – the ingredients to this honey butter pasta are really minimal, so you want to use good parm here; buy a small chunk of real parmesan with the rind on it and use a grater to grate it yourself…trust me, it’s worth it!
Rosemary Honey Butter Pasta with Crispy Mushrooms
a sweet and savory rosemary honey butter pasta with crispy mushrooms and lots of parmesan
- olive oil
- ½ lb shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
- kosher salt
- ½ lb spaghetti (or other long pasta)
- 4 tbsp butter
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 large rosemary sprig
- 2 oz freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
- freshly cracked black pepper
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add a heaping palmful of salt.
- Heat a large 12” skillet over medium-high heat. Add a generous amount of olive oil to the bottom so that it comes about ⅛” up the sides. Once the oil is hot, add the sliced mushrooms in one even layer (work in two batches if needed). Allow the mushrooms to cook until golden and crisp, stirring often. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the mushrooms to paper towels. Season with a pinch of salt.
- Meanwhile, drop the spaghetti in the boiling water. Cook for 1 minute less than the package’s instructions.
- Wipe out the oil in the skillet and return to medium heat. Add the butter, honey, and rosemary. Allow the mixture to melt and come to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for about 2 minutes.
- Retrieve 1 cup of pasta water from the pot and add it to the honey mixture, whisking until combined. Bring to a simmer and cook for 2-3 minutes until the sauce has slightly reduced. Retrieve 1 more cup of pasta water and set aside.
- Drain the pasta and add it to the skillet. Stir well. Add in the parmesan cheese, stirring until it melts into the sauce. As you stir, add splashes of pasta water if needed to keep the sauce silky smooth. Stir in the mushrooms and allow to heat through. Season the pasta with salt to taste.
- Serve immediately with lots of parmesan cheese and freshly cracked black pepper over top.