Penne Arrabbiata

Penne Arrabbiata

This spicy Italian Penne Arrabbiata is homemade in 20 minutes! It makes a great vegetarian dish, served with fresh parmesan, basil and parsley. 

We spent two weeks exploring Rome, Italy and Paris, France and I came home itching to make my own French and Italian dishes.  Like French Onion Soup,  Croque Monsieur, Shrimp Scampi, and Chicken Piccata!

I first fell in love with Penne Arrabbiata when our family visited Italy and it was instantly one of my favorite dishes. It’s easy to win my heart when the dish is composed of pasta and a spicy tomato sauce. YUM.

Penne Arrabbiata

Arrabbiata (or arrabiata) literally means “angry” in Italian, because the sauce in this dish is supposed to be “angry” spicy.  The Italian name for it is sugo all’arrabbiata and I was surprised to find that Americans often spell it wrong.  It’s supposed to be spelled with two b’s — arrabbiata, but it seems that most people are spelling it incorrectly with just one “b” — arrabiata.

Luckily, it’s delicious even spelled wrong!  And if you are worried about the heat, you can adapt the crushed red pepper measurements according to your tolerance for spice. Serve it with a green beans and warm crusty bread.

Arrabbiata Sauce (sugo all’arrabbiata):

This angry (spicy) Italian sauce is simple and elegant.  I love the fresh flavors mixed in with it–the fresh parsley, basil and parmesan. Those three fresh ingredients are a must for this dish! Oh, and don’t forget to use a fresh parmesan, NOT the pre-shredded stuff, please!

Penne Arrabbiata

How to make penne arrabbiata:

1. Cook pasta: penne or other desired pasta. Drain and set aside.

2. Make the arrabbiata sauce.  Add oil, garlic, and crushed red pepper to a skillet over medium heat and cook for 30 seconds.  Add the whole tomatoes, tomato paste, and simmer for 10 minutes before removing from heat and adding the fresh basil.

Penne Arrabbiata

3. Add pasta and parmesan. Toss and enjoy.

Penne Arrabbiata

Arrabbiata Variations:

  • Arrabbiata spaghetti: substitute spaghetti noodles.
  • Add meat: ground beef, chicken, shrimp, chorizo, sausage, meatballs
  • Add vegetables: grill desired vegetables (zucchini, pepper, onions, etc) in step 2, before adding tomatoes.

To Freeze:

Make the arrabbiata sauce and allow it to cool completely.  Store it in a freezer safe container for 2-3 months.  Reheat in a sauce pan on low heat.  Make noodles fresh for serving.

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Penne Arrabbiata

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Penne Arrabbiata

This spicy Italian Penne Arrabbiata is homemade in 20 minutes! It makes a great vegetarian dish, served with fresh parmesan, basil and parsley. 
Course Main Course
Cuisine French
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 5
Calories 488kcal
Author Lauren Allen

Ingredients

  • 1 pound penne rigate
  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes , depending on how spicy you want it
  • 1 28 ounce can whole peeled tomatoes (or 1 1/2 cups fresh chopped tomatoes)
  • 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 6 fresh basil leaves , chopped
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese (or pecorino cheese), for topping
  • 1/3 cup flat-leaf parsley (finely chopped), for topping

Instructions

  • Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling water, according to package instructions, until tender. 
  • Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and crushed red pepper; cook, stirring for 30 seconds. 
  • Add tomatoes, crushing them roughly with the back of a wooden spoon, and tomato paste. 
  • Bring to a simmer over low heat and cook for 5-10 minutes. Remove from heat and add fresh chopped basil. 
  • When pasta is cooked, drain the water and add it to the sauce. Toss well. Taste and add more red pepper flakes or salt and pepper, if needed. 
  • Serve immediately topped with a generous portion of grated pecorino or parmesan cheese and fresh chopped parsley.

Notes

Variations:
  • Arrabbiata spaghetti: substitute spaghetti noodles.
  • Add meat: ground beef, chicken, shrimp, chorizo, sausage, meatballs
  • Add vegetables: grill desired vegetables (zucchini, pepper, onions, etc) in step 2, before adding tomatoes.

To Freeze: Make the arrabbiata sauce and allow it to cool completely.  Store it in a freezer safe container for 2-3 months.  Reheat in a sauce pan on low heat.  Make noodles fresh for serving.

 

Nutrition

Calories: 488kcal | Carbohydrates: 76g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 456mg | Potassium: 617mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 840IU | Vitamin C: 22.4mg | Calcium: 199mg | Iron: 3.4mg

I first shared this recipe October 2016. Updated March 2020 with process photos.

Have you tried this recipe?!

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