Spaghetti Frittata: the No-Waste Recipe For a Main Dish Made With Leftover Pasta

Total time: 30 mins.
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 4 people
By Cookist

What can you do with leftover pasta? Do what an Italian grandmother would do—make Spaghetti Frittata! This beloved dish is a staple in Naples, transforming leftover pasta into a delicious meal that avoids waste. Ideal for a satisfying beach lunch or a handy snack on school trips, Spaghetti Frittata will be a hit with anyone who loves a hearty, flavorful dish. Easy to prepare and incredibly versatile, it’s perfect for any occasion, whether you’re enjoying it fresh off the stove or packing it for an on-the-go meal. Let’s make it!

What is Spaghetti Frittata?

Spaghetti Frittata, or "Frittata di Pasta," has its roots in the culinary traditions of Naples, Italy. This ingenious dish originated as a practical solution to avoid wasting leftover pasta, embodying the Italian ethos of resourcefulness and respect for food. Traditionally made with simple ingredients like eggs, cheese, and leftover pasta, Spaghetti Frittata became a staple in Neapolitan households. It was often prepared for beach outings or as a convenient snack for school trips, reflecting its versatility and ease of transport. Over time, this humble dish has gained popularity beyond Naples, celebrated for its delightful combination of flavors and textures, and its ability to transform ordinary leftovers into a culinary delight.

Tips for The Best Spaghetti Frittata

  • Day-old pasta works best as it absorbs the egg mixture better and holds together nicely.
  • Parmigiano Reggiano adds a rich flavor, but you can mix in other cheeses like mozzarella or pecorino for a more complex taste.
  • Cook on medium heat to ensure the frittata cooks evenly without burning. Cover the pan with a lid to help cook the top side before flipping.
  • Use a large plate or a flat lid to flip the frittata. Slide it onto the plate, then invert it back into the pan to cook the other side.

Can I Use Other Types of Pasta for This Recipe?

Yes! While spaghetti is traditional, other pasta shapes like penne, fusilli, or linguine work well too. Just ensure the pasta is well-coated with the egg mixture for a cohesive frittata.

Why Should I Add Milk to My Frittata?

Adding milk to the Spaghetti Frittata helps to create a richer, creamier texture. It makes the egg mixture more cohesive and adds a touch of moisture, preventing the frittata from becoming too dry or dense.

Why is My Frittata Watery or Soggy?

The frittata might be soggy or watery if the pasta wasn’t drained properly, the egg mixture had too much liquid, or if it wasn’t cooked long enough. Ensure to drain the pasta well, use the correct amount of milk, and cook the frittata thoroughly to avoid these issues.

Can I Cook This in The Oven Instead?

Yes, you can bake Spaghetti Frittata in the oven. Pour the mixture into a greased oven-safe dish and bake at 350°F (175°C) for about 20-25 minutes, or until the frittata is set and golden brown. This method ensures even cooking and a firm texture.

How Can I Enrich This Spaghetti Frittata?

To enrich Spaghetti Frittata, add ingredients like sautéed vegetables (bell peppers, spinach, onions), cooked meats (ham, bacon, sausage), or additional cheeses (mozzarella, cheddar).

When Do You Know it's Time to Flip the Frittata and How Do You Do It?

You'll know the frittata needs to be flipped when the edges are set and the bottom is golden brown, usually after about 10 minutes of cooking. To flip it, slide the frittata onto a large plate, cover it with the pan, and quickly invert both to return the frittata to the pan, uncooked side down. Cook for another 10 minutes until fully set.

Can I Make This in Advance?

Yes, absolutely! Prepare and cook the frittata, then let it cool completely. Store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat slices in a pan or microwave before serving.

Can I Freeze Spaghetti Frittata?

Yes, you can freeze Spaghetti Frittata. Let it cool completely, then wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and foil or place it in an airtight container. Freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating and serving.

More Traditional Italian Recipes You Will Love

Spaghetti Alle Vongole

Creamy Lemon Pasta

Caprese Salad

Zingara Sandwich

Authentic Pasta Puttanesca

How to Store Spaghetti Frittata

Store leftover Spaghetti Frittata in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will keep for up to 3 days. Reheat slices in a pan or microwave before serving.


Cooked spaghetti
250 grams
Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
60 grams
Whole Milk
60 ml
to taste
Black pepper
to taste
Extra virgin olive oil
to taste

How to Prepare Spaghetti Frittata

Start by heating up a generous drizzle of olive oil in the pan. Break the eggs and plunge them into a bowl, the add the milk to them.

Season the eggs and milk with Parmesan, salt and pepper and stir them well to combine and melt all the ingredients together.

Finally, pour the eggs mixture onto the leftover pasta and stir it together so that all the spaghetti are coated with the mixture. Pour the mixture into the hot pan.

Cover it with the lid and let it cook on one side for about 10 minutes, before flipping it helping yourself with a plate and cooking on the other side for another 10 minutes.

The Spaghetti Frittata is ready. Enjoy!

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