Spaghetti with Tomatoes, Basil, and Toasted Bread Crumbs

  • Author: Taming of the Spoon
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x



  • 12 ounces spaghetti
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound fresh cherry tomatoes, preferably in a variety of colors, cut in half
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 4 large eggs, for serving (optional)


  1. Heat a large pot of water for the pasta.
  2. While the water comes to a boil, prepare the bread crumbs. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large sauté pan or dutch oven over medium heat. Add bread crumbs and sauté until bread crumbs are crisp and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer bread crumbs to a small bowl. Set aside. Wipe out the sauté pan with a paper towel.
  3. When the water comes to a boil, salt the water generously and add the spaghetti. Cook spaghetti until very al dente, about 8 minutes. Turn off the heat under the spaghetti.
  4. In the same pan used for the bread crumbs, heat remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and sauté very briefly. Using tongs, transfer spaghetti from the saucepan to the skillet. Add 1 1/2 cups of the pasta cooking water. Bring to a low simmer, and simmer until the spaghetti is al dente, tossing often. Add another 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking liquid, then gradually add cheese, tossing until cheese is melted and sauce has emulsified. Remove from heat. Add basil and butter and continue tossing until pasta is evenly coated and butter is melted. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide pasta among four plates and sprinkle with the reserved bread crumbs. If desired, fry eggs to your liking and serve on top of pasta.