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Pasta with Vodka Sauce

Pasta with Vodka Sauce

Comforting and easy to prepare, this Pasta with Vodka Sauce will surely please even the pickiest eaters. The tomato sauce is delicious, but adding vodka creates a wonderful flavor combination you won’t want to miss out on!

Vodka sauce goes well with most pasta noodles, but you will usually see a recipe using penne or rigatoni. This vodka sauce recipe is perfect for any occasion, whether you’re hosting a dinner party or just need something quick and easy to make after work. The vodka sauce can be made in minutes, so there’s no reason not to try this dish!

The sauce is made by simmering the tomato paste, tomato sauce, and heavy cream mixture with a unique and flavorful ingredient, the habanero pepper. It is true that the habanero is one of the hottest peppers, but don’t worry; we are not adding the whole pepper to the sauce.

Pasta with Vodka Sauce
Pasta with Vodka Sauce

The ingredients in the Pasta with Vodka Sauce

  • Pasta Noddles: you can use Penne, Rigatoni, Orecchiette, or the pasta noodle you choose.
  • Olive oil: helps cook the ingredient with added flavor
  • Butter: to help cook the ingredients, but also for flavor.
  • Red onion: I prefer red or shallots because of their deep flavor; you can also use white onion.
  • Habanero pepper: adds a nice subtle kick that is palatable. Only use a small hot pepper and only 1/4 of it. The seeds must be removed and the piece finely minced.
  • Garlic cloves: you can also use ground cloves, but fresh is better.
  • Tomato paste: this ingredient is mainly for color and flavor.
  • Tomato and basil sauce (store-bought): this sauce can add flavor to the sauce. Make sure you buy a good brand and one that you like.
  • Vodka: the star of the show! Choose your preferred brand of vodka.
  • Heavy Cream: to create a creamy smooth sauce.
  • Pasta water: this help binds all the ingredients together.
  • Parmesan cheese: a word of advice! Don’t be cheap with this ingredient. Pasta always needs good cheese. The Parmesan cheese adds tons of flavor to the sauce.
  • Salt to taste: don’t overdo it with the salt.

How to make the Pasta with Vodka Sauce

The Vodka sauce is very simple to make and has a little kick you might not expect, but the flavors are so amazing you will want to make it again and again.

  1. The first step is to prepare the pasta noodles because the sauce does not take long to prepare.
  2. Heat a pan over medium heat and add the olive oil and butter. Add the onion and habanero pepper and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5 minutes and occasionally stir until translucent.
  3. Add the tomato paste and mix with the onion to combine. Cook the tomato paste for about 5 – 7 minutes, letting it settle and turn darker on the bottom of the pan. Add a little bit of olive if necessary. 
  4. Slowly pour the vodka into the tomato paste, stir, and scrape up if needed. 
  5. Lower the heat and add the heavy cream. Combine all the ingredients and let the sauce simmer for about 1 minute; add the pasta water and parmesan cheese, then bring to a simmer for about 2 minutes. 
  6. Add the pasta and stir until the noodles are coated with the sauce. 
  7. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If you want the sauce to be saucier, add more pasta water.
  8. Serve immediately with your favorite salad and meat or seafood entree.  
Pasta with Vodka Sauce
Pasta with Vodka Sauce

Notes and Tips Pasta with Vodka Sauce

  • Is the sauce spicy? It could be! If you add a lot of pepper, it will be spicy. The goal is to add enough pepper to the sauce for a nice and aromatic flavor.
  • Use any other chili pepper you want if you can’t find Habanero peppers. Remember to remove the seeds and use only a few at a time when using fresh chili peppers. You can also use crushed red pepper, and add 1 teaspoon or more, depending on your taste. 
  • You can use penne, rigatoni, bowtie, and even linguine, spaghetti, or fettuccine for pasta noodle.
  • If you want a smoother consistency for the sauce, blend the sauce in a blender or use an immersion blender.
  • Add shrimp, chicken breast, or leftover meat for a one-pot meal.
  • If you don’t have vodka on hand, you can use a combination of white wine and chicken broth instead.
  • The cream in this sauce helps to keep it from being too acidic and gives the dish a rich, creamy texture.
  • Don’t worry if the sauce is not bright or dark red. The mixture of tomato paste, tomato sauce, and heavy cream will give the sauce its color. Don’t add too much tomato paste, or the sauce will be too acidic. The color and richness will also differ if you use crushed or fresh tomatoes.
  • Using a large nonstick pan to make the dish is also a good idea. 

Pasta with vodka sauce goes great with meatballs or hearty meat dishes like steak or roasted chicken breast.

Pasta with Vodka Sauce

Pasta with Vodka Sauce

Pasta with vodka sauce is a simple and delicious recipe that can be prepared in less than 30 minutes and served with grilled or roasted chicken.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Course Main Course, Main Dishes
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 6
Calories 573 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb Pasta Noodles boil and drained (use Penne, Rigatoni, Orecchiette, or your preferred choice)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • ½ red onion diced
  • 1/4 Habanero pepper seeds removed and finely minced
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup tomato and basil sauce store-bought
  • ¼ cup vodka
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup reserved pasta water
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
  • salt to taste

Instructions
 

  • The first step is to prepare the pasta noodles because the sauce takes a little time.
  • Heat a pan over medium heat and add the olive oil and butter. Add the onion and habanero pepper and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5 minutes and occasionally stir until translucent.
  • Add the tomato paste and mix with the onion to combine. Cook the tomato paste for about 5 – 7 minutes, letting it settle and turn darker on the bottom of the pan. Add a little bit of olive if necessary.
  • Slowly pour the vodka into the tomato paste, stir, and scrape up if needed.
  • Lower the heat and add the heavy cream. Combine all the ingredients and let the sauce simmer for about 1 minute; add the pasta water and parmesan cheese, then bring to a simmer for about 2 minutes.
  • Add the pasta and stir until the noodles are coated with the sauce.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper. If you want the sauce to be saucier, add more pasta water.
  • Serve immediately with your favorite salad and meat or seafood entree.

Notes

  • Is the sauce spicy? It could be! If you add a lot of pepper, it will be spicy. The goal is to add enough pepper to the sauce for a nice and aromatic flavor.
  • Use any other chili pepper you want if you can’t find Habanero peppers. Remember to remove the seeds and use only a few at a time when using fresh chili peppers. You can also use crushed red pepper, and add 1 teaspoon or more, depending on your taste.
  • You can use penne, rigatoni, bowtie, and even linguine, spaghetti, or fettuccine for pasta noodle.
  • If you want a smoother consistency for the sauce, blend the sauce in a blender or use an immersion blender.
  • Add shrimp, chicken breast, or leftover meat for a one-pot meal.
  • If you don’t have vodka on hand, you can use a combination of white wine and chicken broth instead.
  • The cream in this sauce helps to keep it from being too acidic and gives the dish a rich, creamy texture. Don’t worry if the sauce is not bright or dark red. The mixture of tomato paste, tomato sauce, and heavy cream will give the sauce its color.
  • Only add a little tomato paste or the recommended amount, or the sauce will be too acidic. The color and richness will also differ if you use crushed or fresh tomatoes.
  • Using a large nonstick pan to make the dish is also a good idea.

Nutrition

Calories: 573kcalCarbohydrates: 62gProtein: 13gFat: 28gSaturated Fat: 13gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 58mgSodium: 238mgPotassium: 378mgFiber: 3gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 966IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 106mgIron: 2mg

Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary greatly based on the products used.

Keyword 30 minutes meals, pasta dinner, pasta dish, pasta noodles, penne a la vodka
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Nutrition info is automatically generated and provided as a courtesy and as an estimate only.

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