Side Dishes and Vegetables

Last Editorial Review: 6/11/2007


Penne with Creamy Tomato Vodka Sauce

I love this recipe because it is simple to make but the results are delicious.


  • 1 (16 ounce) package whole-wheat blend penne pasta (i.e. Barilla Plus®)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup chopped sweet onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced or chopped garlic
  • 28 ounce can Italian-style diced tomatoes (or similar)
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
  • 3/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup vodka
  • 1 cup fat free half and half
  • 1 cup low fat milk
  • 1/2 cup shredded or grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Start a large pot of lightly salted water boiling. Add the pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente. Drain the noodles in a colander.
  2. Meanwhile, start heating the olive oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute until tender (about 2-3 minutes). Stir in the canned tomatoes (breaking up the tomatoes with a fork if using canned whole tomatoes). Stir in the crushed red pepper (if desired), basil, salt and pepper, bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to simmer and let cook for 8-10 minutes more.
  3. Stir in the vodka and simmer 10 minutes more. Stir the fat-free half-and-half and milk into the tomato mixture and let the mixture simmer another 8-10 minutes. Toss the sauce with the hot penne pasta and sprinkle each serving with Parmesan cheese.

Makes 6 servings

Nutritional Information:
per serving: 420 calories, 20 g protein, 70 g carbohydrate, 7 g fat, 1.8 g saturated fat, 3.6 g monounsaturated fat, 1 g polyunsaturated fat, 6 mg cholesterol, 10.5 g fiber, 320 mg sodium (not included any salt to taste). Calories from fat: 14 percent.

© 2007 WebMD Inc. © 2006 Elaine Magee

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