Luxurious Pasta With Vodka Cream Sauce

pasta and vodka cream sauce

If you want mid week rave reviews on a dinner served or if you just want to wow your guests with something special, this is the dish for you! Serve them this luxurious pasta with vodka cream sauce.

This sauce tastes like you spent hours cooking it on the stove, but you really didn’t. It has a deep, rich flavor with a silky and luxurious texture that coats the pasta inside and out in every groove.

Speaking of pasta I recommend using mezzi rigatoni, it’s the shorter version of traditional rigatoni, go for the one with the ridges.

Don’t get me wrong you can use other shapes, I’ve made it with penne pasta before, but my heart belongs to mezzi!

vodka sauce ingredients

Get yourself a bottle of vodka that has a nice smooth character to it, you don’t want to use anything too harsh. Right now I’m enjoying Trader Joe’s TX vodka it’s 6 times distilled and it really pairs well with this sauce. (not sponsored).

Have your ingredients ready to go and your salted water boiling and you’re on your way to a fantastic meal!

saute onions and garlic

Onions and garlic are the foundation to this sauce but the star of the show is tubed tomato paste!

tomato paste

Triple concentrated tomato paste to be exact, this is the game changer to this recipe! No more cans of tomatoes, no more doctoring up a marinara sauce with cream, no chopped tomatoes added, nothing!

Triple concentrated tomato paste is the secret ingredient!


Let the tomato paste cook down a bit, then you’ll deglaze it with the vodka. Now is the time to start cooking your pasta.

heavy cream

You’ll be adding pasta water and heavy cream together stirring and stirring until it reaches a vibrant pink color.


creamy sauce

Like this!


Now add in your pasta (al dente) and incorporate all that sauce with the pasta really well.
sprinkling cheese

Shut the burner off and sprinkle in the cheese and toss gently.

pasta and vodka sauce

Now get a big scoop so you can fill your plate!


Add more cheese of course and a sprinkling of parsley, after you take one bite you’ll know exactly what I mean.  This sauce is to die for!

You’ll want to make it often and the best part is that it comes together so quickly, so make sure you have a full bottle of vodka and tubes of tomato paste on hand.

If you want to go all out and show off a little, you can sear up a few scallops to have on the side, but honestly a little green salad would be perfect!

pasta and sauce

You need this in your life!

eaten pasta


5.0 from 1 reviews
Luxurious Pasta With Vodka Cream Sauce
Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit
  • ½ lb. mezzi rigatoni with ridges, or penne with ridges
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 3 oz. triple - concentrated tomato paste in a squeeze tube
  • ¾ cup of grated parmesan cheese, more for plated garnish
  • 2 oz. vodka ( smooth character )
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup or so of reserved pasta water
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • olive oil
  • parsley for garnish
  1. Start your water boiling for the pasta, make sure it's salted
  2. Have all your ingredients ready to go.
  3. Drizzle olive oil into a heavy bottomed pan.
  4. Saute the onion and garlic until the onion starts to brown around the edges, could take 5 or so minutes.
  5. Squeeze tomato paste in along with red pepper flakes.Sir well until the paste coats the onion.
  6. Continue stirring until the paste reaches a deep red color and starts to brown on the bottom of the pan, around 5 or so minutes.
  7. Add the vodka and deglaze the pan, stirring to incorporate, reduce heat to low.
  8. Using a heatproof measuring cup scoop ¼ cup of the boiling water from the pot, then add all the cream to the hot water, this will temper the cream so it doesn't break when added into the sauce.
  9. Slowly add the warm cream into the pot, stirring to incorporate.
  10. Remove from heat for a few minutes.
  11. Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water and cook it al dente according to box instructions.While pasta is boiling, add a little pasta water so it's not so thick.
  12. Reserve a good cup of the pasta water to add to sauce to thin out later if needed.
  13. When cooked, transfer the pasta into the sauce pot using a spider (as pictured in post).
  14. Toss everything together, adding pasta, then the grated cheese, plus enough of the pasta water to have the right consistency.
  15. Sauce should be smooth, glossy and coating each piece of the pasta, not runny.
  16. Toss in some chopped parsley.
  17. Garnishing each plate with a drizzle of olive oil, cheese and more parsley.
  18. Enjoy!



Mushroom Marsala with Cipollini and Thyme

mushroom marsalaMy husband is the official taste tester around here so when I see him take a bite, close his eyes, move his head from side to side I know I’ve made something really good, that’s exactly what he did when he tasted this dish! We’re all familiar with Chicken Marsala, Veal Marsala and I even make Pork Chop Marsala, but in this dish there is no meat and you won’t miss it one bit because the star of the show that gets to soak up the creamy Marsala sauce is the pasta, along with some wonderful earthy mushrooms and those adorable saucer shaped cipollini!

DelverdeRecently I was asked to be a part of the La Cucina Italiana Blogger Ambassador panel which was very exciting for me since I have been an avid reader of their magazine for years, and I have the stacks of them to prove it! They also invited me to participate in The Dish your Blog with Delverde Recipe ChallengeThey sent me a sample of three different cuts of pasta and I was to choose one, then create a recipe with the cut of my choice. If I win I get to go to New York City and share my pasta recipe with the world! If I don’t win, guess what, you’re getting the recipe here anyway.

marsala sauceYou can use any mushrooms you so desire for this dish, the more of a variety the better, I hand picked some shitake and crimini so they would all be about the same size but if I would have found some good looking oyster mushrooms I would have added those too. The sauce consists of Marsala wine, garlic and thyme with mascarpone cheese to thicken it up. I also added cipollini, which are small saucer shaped onions, the Italian version of a pearl onion.

mushroom marsala The pasta shape I chose was Delverde’s Mezzi Rigatoni, handmade flavor artisinal pasta half the size of traditional rigatoni. Short and stocky with a nice bite, it was the perfect match for the other bite size ingredients.

mushroom marsalaAll drenched in creamy Marsala sauce, who needs meat?
mushroom marsala 

Mushroom Marsala with Cipollini and Thyme
  • Assorted mushrooms, a dozen of each kind, hand picked to keep them on the smaller size
  • 8 cipollini, small
  • 1¾ cup Marsala wine
  • 1 heaping ¼ cup, mascarpone cheese
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • fresh thyme and parsley
  • ½ lb. cooked Delverde Mezzi Rigatoni
  1. Pre boil cipollini for 2 minutes with skins on then submerge in ice bath for easy peeling.
  2. Heat oven to 400 degrees, then place all mushrooms and cipollini on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive, oil salt and pepper. Cook until caramelized around 10 minutes or so. Set aside.
  3. In the meantime make your sauce by placing the garlic, butter and a drizzle of olive oil in a sauce pan, saute until garlic turns golden then pour in the Marsala and the thyme from one or two branches, let the alcohol cook down for a few minutes then whisk in the mascarpone cheese, reduce heat and slowly let the sauce thicken.
  4. When the sauce thickens then add in your roasted and caramelized cipollini and mushrooms then toss in the cooked pasta, gently stirring to coat everything with the sauce.
  5. Garnish with parsley and more thyme.
  6. DISCLOSURE: This recipe is posted as an entry in the Delverde Dish Your Blog recipe contest to try to win a trip to NYC. Some entrants may have received free sample products in addition to the opportunity to compete for the prize.
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