This penne alla vodka is tender penne pasta tossed in a rich and delicious tomato, vodka, and cream sauce. Add a sprinkling of parmesan cheese and you’ll have an Italian restaurant-quality meal in the comfort of your own home in under 30 minutes.
I always order penne alla vodka (or penne with vodka sauce) at the Italian restaurant in New Jersey. That creamy and flavorful sauce just can’t be beat! Luckily it’s super easy to make penne alla vodka – in 30 minutes you’ll have an amazing dinner on the table. Try this dish with some grilled chicken or grilled shrimp for added protein and you will have yourself a well-balanced dish!
Does the Vodka sauce have Vodka in it?
Yes, vodka sauce does in fact contain vodka which is how it gets its name! The vodka adds a unique flavor to this dish, but it simmers for long enough that the alcohol boils off so there’s no danger of getting intoxicated from eating pasta!
Vodka sauce is enhanced with some heavy cream and plenty of parmesan cheese.
What Goes with Penne alla Vodka?
Some of the best side dishes to compliment penne alla vodka would be a fresh homemade side salad with garlic bread or sauteed vegetables
Tips for Penne alla Vodka:
- Do not use the green can of parmesan cheese for this dish. Look for a high-quality grated or shaved parmesan, or buy a block of it and grate it yourself.
- Make sure you let the sauce simmer for long enough so that the alcohol will cook-off. If you don’t cook the sauce for long enough, you may end up with a harsh aftertaste from the alcohol.
- This dish is great as is, but you can add in other ingredients to make it your own such as Italian sausage, meatballs, zucchini, mushrooms, or olives.
- You can make this sauce a day before you plan to use it. Simply reheat it on the stove while your pasta cooks, then toss everything together and serve.
Other Recipes You Might Like:
Penne alla Vodka
- 3 ½ c penne noodles dry
- 1 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 small onion minced
- ⅓ c vodka
- 28 oz canned crushed tomatoes
- ⅔ c heavy whipping cream 35%
- 1 tbsp italian seasoning
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain but do not rinse pasta.
- Meanwhile, place butter and olive oil in a large skillet or stockpot over medium heat.
- Once butter is melted and hot, add garlic and onion and cook until onion is translucent, about 2-3 minutes.
- Add the vodka and simmer until reduced by half, about 4 minutes.
- Add the crushed tomatoes, heavy whipping cream and Italian seasoning to the stockpot. Simmer for 10-12 minutes, crushing the tomatoes as you cook with the back of your spoon.
- When the sauce appears thick and smooth, stir in the penne noodles.
- Garnish with optional Parmesan cheese and red chili flakes when ready to serve.