Pasta is a classic weeknight dinner for those who are strapped for time, but we can do better than stir in some store-bought marinara sauce. This spaghetti with Chili Crisp Breadcrumbs is an awesome change in flavors and textures and also a good use of leftover, slightly stale bread!
Let’s dig into this spaghetti recipe and figure out what makes it SO worth your time, even though it’s really fast to make!
How to Make Fresh Breadcrumbs
This dish really works best with fresh breadcrumbs so you have some bread with different sizes and textures. You can just lay out a few pieces of bread on a baking sheet and bake them for 300˚F for a few minutes until they are crispy.
If you don’t have this, you CAN use store-bought breadcrumbs but you’ll lose some of the texture of fresh breadcrumbs.
What is Chili Crisp?
Chili Crisp is a delicious condiment that is popular and easily available at most Asian markets and is normally a mix of chili peppers, garlic, and peanuts cooked in oil until crunchy. It’s SO good on many dishes and has become one of my favorite condiments recently.
I like this review of chili crisps you can buy online or there are some homemade versions out there as well. If you have an Asian market near you, they will undoubtedly have a few versions to try.
Ultimately, if you can’t find it, you can add a teaspoon of dried red pepper flakes along with an extra tablespoon of oil to the breadcrumbs. It won’t be exactly the same, but you’ll end up with some spicy notes and crispy crumbs.
If you combine the fresh breadcrumbs with olive oil, chili crisp, parlsey, and garlic, you’ll end up with this wonderful crispy and savory topper.
This breadcrumb topper is good on spaghetti (obviously) but would also be great on macaroni and cheese or other pasta dishes.
How to Finish the Spaghetti Dish
When you’re spaghetti is cooked al dente, melt some butter in a large skillet over low heat. Then pull the spaghetti straight from the pot and add it to the skillet. Swirl the spaghetti around and add about half of the crispy breadcrumbs. Toss to combine.
At this point I like to divide the spaghetti between plates and then top with an extra handful of chili crisp breadcrumbs and a little parmesan cheese.
Ready to serve!
Leftovers and Storage
If you have leftover crispy breadcrumbs, you can keep them on the counter or a day or two without issue. The spaghetti can keep fine in the fridge for 4-5 days and can reheat easily in a skillet over low heat with a splash of oil.
If you reheat in the microwave the breadcrumbs will get very soggy.
If you are a chili crisp fan, leave a comment! I love this condiment so much and have been using it in so many ways and in many different recipes!
Spaghetti with Chili Crisp Breadcrumbs
- 8-10 ounces spaghetti, cooked al dente
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 ½ cups fresh breadcrumbs, about 3 pieces of bread
- 2 tablespoons chili crisp
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon parsley, minced
- 2 tablespoons butter
- Fresh parmesan, garnish
- To make breadcrumbs, place 3-4 pieces of stale bread on a baking sheet and bake for 300˚F until bread is crispy, maybe 7-8 minutes. Then let bread dry and crumble into crumbs. You can use storebought breadcrumbs, but fresh is best for this dish.
- Cook spaghetti in salted water until it’s al dente, 8-10 minutes.
- In a small skillet, add 2 tablespoons olive oil to a small skillet over medium heat. Add breadcrumbs, chili crisp, garlic, and parsley. Stir together and cook, stirring occasionally, until breadcrumbs are fragrant and crispy. Remove from heat.
- When spaghetti is done, melt butter in a large skillet. Remove spaghetti from the pot with tongs and add to skillet with melted butter. Toss together with half of the crispy breadcrumbs over low heat.
- Serve spaghetti immediately with extra crispy breadcrumbs and fresh parmesan on top of the spaghetti.