Recipes Main Courses Pasta Rice and Grains Penne with Vodka Sauce
Penne with Vodka Sauce

Penne with Vodka Sauce

Penne with Vodka Sauce is rated 4.4 out of 5 by 7.
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4
For a new spin on classic vodka sauce, add a splash of brandy or Cognac to the 1/3 cup vodka. Simply substitute 2 Tbs. brandy or Cognac for the 2 Tbs. vodka.

Ingredients:

  • 4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 Tbs. vodka
  • 2 Tbs. slivered fresh basil
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp. plus 2 Tbs. salt
  • 1 lb. penne or other tubular pasta
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Directions:

Make the sauce
Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. In a large fry pan over medium-low heat, melt the butter with the cream. In a small bowl, dissolve the tomato paste in the vodka. Stir into the cream mixture. Add the basil and red pepper flakes. Season with the 1 tsp. salt. Cook until most of the alcohol has evaporated and the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes.

Cook the pasta
Meanwhile, add the 2 Tbs. salt and the pasta to the boiling water. Cook, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until al dente, according to the package instructions. Drain, reserving about 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Add the pasta to the sauce and warm briefly over low heat to blend the flavors. Add the cheese and toss to combine. Add as much of the reserved cooking water as needed to loosen the sauce and serve. Serves 4.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Pasta, by Julia della Croce (Oxmoor House, 2006).
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Party Success This recipe is easy to make and produces a delicious classic. A total crowd pleaser. I include a few ounces of pancetta at the very beginning (saute until crisp before adding butter and cream) which adds some depth.
Date published: 2016-07-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from best vodka sauce I've made this about 7 times now my family lovessss it ...its hard to find a good recipe for vodka sauce but this one is the best I tried a couple others but no comparison to this ...
Date published: 2016-03-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Quick, Easy and Fantastic I've made this recipe about six times now, so I've had time to work with it. The first time I made it with substandard vodka, and I honestly just threw it out. It was bitter, overly boozy and had a bite that wasn't exactly what I wanted for a nice dinner. I decided to give it a second try and bought a better quality vodka (quality is everything and makes the biggest difference in this recipe, where the vodka is a prominent flavor anyways) and used red chile pepper flakes instead (which gives it a nice kick), and I added about four times the amount of basil (2 TBS was not nearly enough for me) and a splash more of the vodka. It's easy, quick, and my family requests it often.
Date published: 2014-05-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Favorite Penne Vodka This is the best penne vodka recipe I've tried. I don't add the extra TBS of vodka and I cook it a little longer to cook off the alcohol. It is nice and creamy and super easy.
Date published: 2014-04-29
Rated 1 out of 5 by from A Boozy Mess! This recipe is a boozy mess. It doesn't have the full depth of flavor but instead overpowers you with a hard alcohol bite. A much better version is the one from America's Test Kitchen. Yes, it requires a bit more time and effort than a Food Made Fast recipe...but the end result is worth it.
Date published: 2014-04-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome for a dinner party! You can use fat free half and half to cut down on the fat, but it's great either way. I've also added 2 ounces of low fat cream cheese to make it even richer.
Date published: 2012-07-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow! So yummy! I had never made my own penne with vodka sauce until I tried this recipe. My husband and I were really happy with how delicious it was. Absolutely not something a healthy diet should include more than once in a while, but a really yummy treat of a dinner! Adding a side of veggies and some salad would round it out nicely (and may help you eat a little less of the pasta if you're worried about calories!).
Date published: 2012-05-28
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