Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka is a lusciously creamy and cheesy tomato sauce spiked with vodka and with a delicious spicy kick. This recipe serves 2 generous portions or 4 smaller servings.

Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka

I waited 40 years to try pasta alla vodka.

And it just so happens to be the most incredible pasta dish I’ve ever tasted. I know, bold statement. But ohmygoodness it is so so delicious. I think I always thought it would be boring, but it is anything but! The sauce is so lusciously creamy and cheesy with the most addictive back of the throat heat. I’m obsessed.

Recently, Malloree and I have been making quite a few recipes. You may remember the tomato feta pasta? Well this was the next one on the list. Since Gigi Hadid’s spicy vodka pasta went viral, it’s been on our list to try. So when Pat was up north, we had a girls night and made pasta. Now, if you know me, you know that I can’t follow a recipe to a T. Especially when I find odd ingredients or if I can make it even easier than written…

Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka

Or dare I say better than the original? 

Ingredients for Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka

To Make This Spicy Pasta alla Vodka You Will Need:

  • pasta
  • fine sea salt (for pasta water)
  • olive oil
  • shallot
  • garlic
  • tomato paste
  • heavy cream
  • vodka
  • red pepper flakes
  • unsalted butter
  • parmesan cheese
  • kosher salt
  • fresh basil

dried pasta in white bowl

For this recipe, you will need 8 ounces dried pasta. I love using mezzi rigatoni, but any short pasta will work.

filling pot with water

Fill a pot with water, cover and bring to a boil over high heat. This will take a bit so I start the sauce at the same time.

Remember, the sauce can wait for the pasta. The pasta cannot wait for the sauce.

skillet with olive oil, shallot and garlic

Pour 1/4 cup of oil into a 12-inch pan. Add 1 finely diced (small) shallot, 4 large cloves that have been finely chopped to the pan with a pinch of kosher salt.

sauteed shallots and garlic

Heat over medium to medium-low, stir and cook until softened, about 4 minutes.

add in tomato paste

Once soft, stir in 1/4 cup tomato paste and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.

stir and cook

It’s a little difficult to stir with a spatula so switching to a whisk may help.

pour in heavy cream

Pour in 1/2 cup heavy cream.

add in vodka

And 2 tablespoons vodka.

season with chile flakes

Season with 3/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes (more if you want it extra spicy).

stir and melt in butter

Lastly, melt in 2 tablespoons of butter.

lastly add parmesan cheese

Remove off of the heat and stir in 1/3 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese.

By now the water should be boiling. Add a palmful of fine sea salt, stir and drop in the 8 ounces of pasta. Cook according to the package directions, stirring occasionally.

thin sauce with pasta water

When the pasta is almost finished, remove 1/2 cup pasta water (we like it saucy) and pour it into the sauce. The sauce should still be off of the burner.

drain pasta

Drain the pasta into a colander.

add cooked pasta to sauce

And immediately transfer the cooked pasta to the sauce. Place it back on the burner, over low heat, and toss until coated and heated. This should only take a minute since the pasta will be hot.

toss past in sauce to coat

Gorgeous!

Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka

Immediately serve with thinly sliced (chiffonade) fresh basil leaves, grated fresh parmesan cheese and a pinch or two of red pepper flakes.

Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka

It’s the bright orange, deep green and spicy kick for me.

Make this a meal with a simple salad and homemade garlic herb knots.

Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka

Enjoy! And if you give this Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka recipe a try, let me know! Snap a photo and tag me on twitter or instagram!

Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka

Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka
Yield: 2 to 4

Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka

Spicy Garlic Pasta alla Vodka is a lusciously creamy and cheesy tomato sauce spiked with vodka and with a delicious spicy kick. This recipe serves 2 generous portions or 4 smaller servings.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces short pasta (plus sea salt for pasta water)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 small shallot
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 pinch kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons vodka
  • 3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, more or less to taste
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
  • 1/2 cup reserved pasta water
  • fresh basil, chiffonade (thinly sliced) for serving

Instructions

  1. Fill a pot with water, cover and bring to a boil over high heat. This will take a bit so I start the sauce at the same time.
  2. Pour the oil into a 12-inch pan. Add the shallot, garlic with a pinch of kosher salt. Heat over medium to medium-low, stir and cook until softened, about 4 minutes.
  3. Once soft, stir in tomato paste and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour in heavy cream and vodka. Season with red pepper flakes (more if you want it extra spicy). Lastly, melt in the butter.
  4. Remove off of the heat and stir in 1/3 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese.
  5. By now the water should be boiling. Add a palmful of fine sea salt, stir and drop in the pasta. Cook according to the package directions, stirring occasionally.
  6. When the pasta is almost finished, remove 1/2 cup pasta water and pour it into the sauce. The sauce should still be off of the burner.
  7. Drain the pasta into a colander and immediately transfer the cooked pasta to the sauce. Place it back on the burner, over low heat, and toss until coated and heated. This should only take a minute since the pasta will be hot.
  8. Immediately serve with thinly sliced (chiffonade) fresh basil leaves, grated fresh parmesan cheese and a pinch or two of red pepper flakes.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 877Total Fat: 66gSaturated Fat: 27gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 35gCholesterol: 112mgSodium: 406mgCarbohydrates: 51gFiber: 4gSugar: 8gProtein: 16g