Monday, January 16, 2012

Penne Vodka

I go through phases when it comes to Italian food. As a child I always ordered stuffed pastas (stuffed shells, manicotti, etc.).  I then got older and started to order baked ziti everywhere we went (which is quite different from stuffed shells, no?) After that phase came penne vodka. I'm happy to report that my eating has drastically improved with age and I rarely order any of these dishes out because, quite frankly, I can make them just as well at home! I like to order something more interesting when I go out, something I might not make, or something that takes more talent on the chef's part. With that said, time to time I still do order penne vodka because it's just so stinking good. I find there to be two types of penne vodka: a deeper colored vodka sauce that tends to be rich in flavors, and a lighter pink vodka sauce then tends to be creamier and silkier. This is definitely an example of the latter. 

This recipe comes with extremely high praise from many people I know. After hearing about it over and over I decided I needed to finally try it. For awhile I was scared to try this recipe because of the amount of fat/calories in it... but really, it's vodka sauce. If you're looking for a diet food move on. This was super easy to make and came out quite delicious. I tend to prefer my vodka sauces to be a bit smokier/richer in flavor, while this one is definitely more of a creamy tomato taste. With that said, it was still excellent and I'm glad I have several bags of it in the freezer for later meals! If you love a creamy vodka sauce this is for you.

Source: My friend Amy

1/2 cup vodka
1 tbsp. red pepper flakes
2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
4 slices prosciutto, finely chopped
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes, San Marzano preferred
1 cup Romano cheese
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 stick butter

1- Soak the red pepper flakes in the vodka for 10 minutes. Strain the pepper flakes out. 
2- Heat the oil in a large sauce pot. Add the onion and prosciutto, cooking for about 8 minutes.
3- Add the tomatoes and vodka, cooking on low for 30 minutes.
4- Add the cheese, heavy cream, and butter. Cook 20 minutes.
5- Toss with pasta and serve.


  1. What a delish & simple dish! Love it.

  2.! This recipe looks delish! I have one of my own I use but I'm always ready to try something new! Looking forward to cooking this up:)

  3. This sounds (and looks) delicious! I've been wanting to try vodka sauce at home - I'd love to try this recipe!

  4. Yum!! Going in my arsenal for sure! Love penne vodka, but only ever order it in restaurants.

  5. One of my favorites to order at restaurants. However, your cooking always come out on top for me

  6. Tried Thai recipe and love it! Thank u

  7. I tried this recipe for a get together, loved it! Tnx

  8. So how much pasta do you use??

    1. That's up to you! This would make anywhere from 1-2 pounds of pasta depending on how much sauce you like.

  9. my 17 year old daughter found this recipe made it and it is outstanding.