Dairy Free, Mains, Pasta and Noodles, Recipes

Pasta with Spicy Vodka Tomato Sauce Recipe

March 25, 2010
 In mindless cooking mode I decided to make this before checking if I had enough vodka. I knew we had a ridiculously large bottle in the pantry, I was sure there would be plenty there, only to pick it up and realize we had been lugging around this tremendously huge bottle of vodka with a little more than a splash inside. Luckily next to the super-sized bottle was some airplane-sized bottles of vodka that came from who-knows-where, which I quickly emptied into my rapidly cooking frying pan, rinsed out with water and tossed in the sink to recycle later.

My lil’ jalapeno’s new favorite game is to “help” me wash dishes. This is where she pushes a chair twice her size from the other side of the room up to the sink and waits for me to turn the water on so she can fill whatever is in the sink with water and then dump all over the floor. It’s a win-win because my floor could always use a mopping and she stays distracted so I can cook.

I see her chair-pushing maneuver in action so I distractedly turn the water to a low trickle and get back to my cooking. You can imagine the professor’s surprise to walk into the kitchen and see his one-year-old with what seems to be a mini bottle of vodka up to her lips. Oops, it’s just water, I swear.

Pasta with Spicy Vodka Tomato Sauce Recipe

Yield: 4

5 main ingredients along with some spices makes for a delicious, easy weeknight meal. Dairy free!


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 3 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup vodka
  • 1 (24-ounce) can whole tomatoes, chopped with juice
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 small dried red chiles, crumbled
  • 1 pound pasta, spaghetti or penne


  1. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and shallots and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until garlic starts to brown. Take pan off heat and add vodka. Return pan to heat and scrape any browned bits that are stuck to the bottom of the pan.
  2. Add tomatoes, oregano, and chiles and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile bring a large pot of heavily-salted water to a boil. Cook pasta according to package instructions, drain and toss with sauce. Taste and add more salt or pepper if necessary.


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  • Becky Swenson March 28, 2010 at 12:20 am

    I love this recipe! 5 main ingrediants along with some spices…..an easy meal to make that will definately give you some leftovers for later in the week. Thanks Kate!

  • My name is Kate March 30, 2010 at 11:43 am


    So glad you liked it!