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Vodka Pink Sauce
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5 from 1 vote

Penne Alla Vodka (Vodka Pink Sauce Recipe)

Penne alla vodka is a decadent pink vodka sauce, cooked low and slow with fresh oregano, sweet San Marzano tomatoes and a healthy amount of Parmigiano.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: penne alla vodka, penne vodka sauce, pink vodka sauce
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 503kcal
Author: Samantha Ferraro
Cost: $8


  • Olive oil for drizzling
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic chopped
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 cup vodka
  • 1 28-ounce can whole San Marzano tomatoes
  • 1 pound penne or rigatoni pasta
  • Few sprigs of fresh oregano plus more for garnish
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and heat a pan over medium heat and drizzle with olive oil. Add chopped onions, dried oregano and red pepper. Cook until onions caramelize, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes.
  • When onions cook down, carefully add vodka. Turn the heat up and allow vodka to reduce, while stirring with a spatula.
  • Next, gently crush the whole San marzano tomato with your hands and add them to the pan with all its juices. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Place oven-proof lid on and place the oven for 1 hour.
  • While your sauce is cooking in the oven, get your pasta water boiling and cook your pasta.
  • After an hour, remove tomato sauce from oven and blend sauce in blender or food processor. Pulse a few times until everything is blended.
  • Place the blended mixture back in your used pan on very low heat. Stir in heavy cream, fresh oregano and freshly grated Parmigiano. Add cooked pasta to sauce and 1/2 cup of pasta water if it is too thick.
  • To serve, spoon in bowl and top with more Parmigiano, fresh oregano and a drizzle of olive oil.


Any type of canned tomatoes will work here, including whole or chopped tomatoes, since it will all be blended together anyway.
Save some starchy pasta cooking water, to add to the sauce if it's a bit thick.
Recipe adapted from Ina Garten


Calories: 503kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 61mg | Sodium: 175mg | Potassium: 331mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 946IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 96mg | Iron: 3mg