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Cacio e Pepe is one of the simple pleasures in life that is oh-so-satisfying and delicious. It also just happens to be one of my favorite foods on planet earth.  Literally meaning “cheese and pepper” the dish tastes like it’s loaded with butter and cream and it’s simply not. This One Pot Cacio e Pepe Israeli Couscous focuses all on technique and getting it just right is actually quite an art, even though the ingredient list might be deceiving. It takes pan sauce making precision to get it just right. 

One Pot Cacio e Pepe Israeli Couscous

So yeah, even though I’ve mastered my own Cacio e Pepe at home, it’s just really hard to write out a recipe and ensure it turns out perfect in everyone’s kitchen… which makes this recipe developer very frustrated. So while I still work on writing the perfect, foolproof recipe I thought of a rather genius idea… this One Pot Cacio e Pepe Israeli Couscous. It’s pretty epic, too.

I really enjoy Israeli couscous, or pearl couscous, for its soft slightly chewy texture. Because it is made from wheat flour, it is not a gluten-free food; however, it is vegetarian and vegan. Israeli couscous also has a low glycemic index, making it a wholesome and high-fiber food. When it is cooked down in water, the starch from the couscous really adds a nice, creamy texture to the pot– making it the perfect candidate for a faux cacio e pepe, and this is the exact inspiration for this dish. 

One Pot Cacio e Pepe Israeli Couscous

By simply stirring in the cheese and pepper with this starchy water combination, the end result mimics the flavors of a classic cacio e pepe and makes it foolproof! 

So here, you can either keep it simple — like cacio e pepe is designed to be — and serve it alone or hey, you do you! Serve alongside grilled steaks for a fancy date night or even top with some seared shrimp or scallops for a nice touch of seafood. You really can’t go wrong!

One Pot Cacio e Pepe Israeli Couscous

5 from 10 votes

One Pot Cacio e Pepe Isreali Couscous

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Servings: 2


  • 1.5 cups Israeli couscous, uncooked
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper plus more for serving
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated pecorino, plus more for serving parmesiano reggiano is fine
  • 1 tsp parsley, finely chopped


For the Israeli Couscous

  • In a medium pot over high heat, add the Israeli couscous and water. Bring to boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to a light simmer. Let cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until liquid has absorbed and couscous is tender, about 10 minutes. 
  • Once the liquid is absorbed and couscous is tender, remove from heat. Season with salt and black pepper. Stir in the pecorino and mix until combined.
  • Top with 3 turns of freshly cracked black pepper,  a sprinkle of freshly grated pecorino and parsley.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Servings: 2

Welcome! I’m Alex.

I’m a food lover sharing healthy, simple, delicious, recipes from my kitchen to yours. Here you’ll find lots of Whole30, lots of healthy, and a little indulgence here and there because…it’s all about balance y’all!

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I’ve had this recipe on my list to make forever, and I finally had the time and ingredients to make it today. WOW! So simple and so good. I served it with some shrimp and summer vegetables. Thanks for al the great recipes!

  2. 5 stars
    I don’t normally leave comments but just had to come back and say how stellar this was. Great directions. So tasty.

    1. why thank you so much for taking the time to rate and comment!! Means a lot to me and I am so glad you love the recipe!

      1. You can either serve alone, I love adding some loosely chopped arugula. OR this pairs well with a pan-seared white flakey fish (halibut is my fave) or some seared scallops! It’s also great with a steak!