Giada De Laurentiis’ ‘Italian Spin’ on a BLT Uses This Carbonara Must-Have Instead of Bacon

A BLT is one of those sandwiches that you can’t really make wrong. It’s such a classic blend of flavors and textures that it will always taste good, no matter what kind of spin you put on it. So when Giada De Laurentiis shared that she swaps bacon for the go-to Italian meat for tasty carbonara, we already knew it was going to be a winning recipe.

“There’s nothing like a BLT with fresh tomatoes in summer, and this zesty Italian spin is a delicious switch-up from the norm!” a caption on a recent Giadzy post reads. “(PS — the spicy mayo is equally delicious on burgers, with fries, and anything else you can dream up.)”

Rather than bacon, De Laurentiis uses thinly sliced pieces of pancetta she fries up until golden and crispy. And the extra saltiness and brininess really packs a punch, especially when paired with her Calabrian chili mayo.

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Pancetta and bacon are both cured pork belly, but the curing process of each differs. They’re both cured using salt or other aromatic spices, but bacon is smoked afterward whereas pancetta is not.

Dubbed a PLAT (Panchetta, Lettuce, Avocado and Tomato), the sandwich is built on two pieces of toasted sourdough bread. Each one is topped with spicy mayo made with Calabrian chili paste, lemon zest, and salt.

Then, thick slices of garden-fresh tomato are layered on top of one piece of toast, followed by peppery arugula, the hot and crispy pancetta, and finally, slices of refreshing avocado. Sandwich the entire thing between the second slice of bread and you’re ready to eat.

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