Penne alla Vodka with Sausage

Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen

Serves 4 to 6


  • 1 lb penne
  • 12 - 16 oz cased hot Italian sausage (cooked and drained)
  • 1 28 oz crushed tomatoes
  • 2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ c minced onion
  • 1 large shallot minced
  • 1 Tbs tomato paste (we often omit if we don’t have any on hand)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ to ¾ tsp red pepper flakes
  • salt
  • ⅓ c vodka
  • ½ c heavy cream
  • 2 Tbs fresh basil, minced
  • grated Parmesan

Heat the olive oil in a pan and saute the onion and shallot until soft, about 4 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook another minute or two. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and saute for another 30 seconds. Stir in the crusted tomatoes and vodka and simmer vigorously for 8 to 10 minutes to cook off the alcohol. Stir in the sausage, cream and basil and season with salt and pepper. Serve over hot penne and top with parmesan.

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