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spicy tagliatelle with crab, lemon, and capers!
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5 from 2 votes

Spicy Tagliatelle with Crab, Lemon, and Capers

Spicy crab pasta with lemon and capers is perfect for an easy weeknight meal or as the star of your next date night in. Ready in 20 minutes, start to finish, this pasta is sweet and delicate from lump crab meat, but a little spicy. Lemon juice, fresh herbs, and capers brighten and round out the flavor, while a touch of cream turns the whole dish luxurious.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: crab pasta, jumbo lump crab meat, lemon caper pasta
Servings: 6 -8 servings
Calories: 497kcal
Author: Ari Laing


  • 1 lb tagliatelle or other long pasta
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 3 medium cloves garlic minced
  • 2 anchovy filets drained
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 lb lump crab meat picked through for shells
  • cup dry white wine
  • 1 tsp Kosher salt
  • lemon juice and zest from 1 lemon
  • ¼ cup parsley chopped, plus more for serving
  • ¼ cup dill chopped
  • 1 heaping Tbsp capers drained
  • ¼ cup Parmesan grated, plus more for serving
  • ¼ - ½ cup heavy cream
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  • Cook the pasta. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add about 1 Tbsp kosher salt. Add tagliatelle, then cook according to package directions, or until al dente. Reserve about ½ cup of pasta water, then drain pasta and set aside.
  • Begin making the sauce. Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil and 2 Tbsp butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add 3 cloves chopped garlic, 2 anchovies, and 1 tsp red pepper flakes, then use a wooden spoon to break down the anchovies (they should melt into the sauce), cooking for about 2-3 minutes.
  • Finish the pasta. Add crab and cook until just heated through, about 1 minute, then deglaze with ⅓ cup white wine. Season with 1 tsp Kosher salt, then cook 1 minute more. Add drained pasta, lemon juice, lemon zest, ¼ cup chopped parsley, ¼ cup chopped dill, 1 Tbsp drained capers, and and ¼ cup parmesan. Stir to combine.
  • Add cream, then season. Pour in about ¼ cup of reserved pasta water and ¼ cup of heavy cream, then toss gently. If you want more of a sauce, add more reserved water and/or cream, otherwise taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Garnish with additional black pepper, Parmesan, and chopped parsley, then serve immediately.



Calories: 497kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 27g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 123mg | Sodium: 1122mg | Potassium: 396mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 822IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 129mg | Iron: 2mg
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