Italian, The Weekly Menus and Recipes, Vegetarian

Recipe 15.4: Pasta with Vodka Cream Sauce

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Mr. Blackboard Kitchen made a fine showing of his kitchen skills the other night with his vodka cream sauce. So fine, in fact, that I’m including the recipe here for your pleasure. As I’m sure you’ve already noticed, we eat a lot of pasta. Two reasons for that, really: it’s super budget-friendly and it’s always tasty! Sometimes we like to mix it up a bit, whether by adding in some mascarpone cheese for a soft creamy flavor, or by adding in a shot or two (or three or four, depending on the day…) of vodka and some cream to add a uniquely different flavor to the basic tomato sauce.


1 large can crushed tomatoes

1 medium can diced tomatoes

1 lb. pasta, your choice

1/4 cup cream

2 shots vodka (we like Tito’s vodka)

5 cloves garlic

3 tbs. olive oil

2 tbs. dried basil

1 1/2  tbs. dried oregano

1 tbs. dried parsley

1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes (adjust for less spice)

2 tbs. salt

1 tsp. black pepper

1/4 cup parmesan cheese


Fill large pot 2/3 of the way with water, then bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, add 1 tbs. salt to water, then add pasta. Stir, then let boil until al dente, according to package directions. (5-7 minutes for whole wheat spaghetti.)

While pasta water comes to a boil, heat olive oil in large saucepan, over medium heat. Add garlic and cook 2-3 minutes, until fragrant. Add both cans of tomatoes, then season with spices. Stir well. Add vodka and cream. Stir, then let come to a slow boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for at least 10 minutes.

Once pasta is cooked, drain, then toss with parmesan cheese. Pour sauce over the pasta and stir to cover. Ladle into large bowls and spoon extra sauce over each pile of pasta. Top with additional parmesan cheese, if you like.