Go Back
+ servings
A close up of a bowl of fusilli pasta with vodka sauce and a fork.

The Best Vodka Sauce Recipe

Teri & Jenny
The Best Vodka Sauce Recipe you'll ever make and in under 30 minutes! It's so easy to make, creamy, smooth and absolutely delicious. It's the perfect weeknight meal for busy nights!
4.99 from 80 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 22 mins
Total Time 27 mins
Course dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Italian, Italian-american
Servings 3
Calories 861 kcal


  • 8 oz dry rotini (or pasta shape of choice)

vodka sauce

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large shallot minced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • cup tomato paste
  • 3 tbsp vodka
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Fill a large pot with water, place over high heat and bring to a boil. Add a small handful salt to water and add pasta.
  • Cook pasta, stirring occasionally, until al dente, 6 to 8 minutes.
  • Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup pasta water, and set both aside.
  • Place a large skillet over medium heat. Once skillet is hot add oil and sauté shallots and garlic for 3 to 4 minutes, or until aromatics begin to slightly caramelize.
  • Add tomato paste and stir together. Continue to stir until paste turns bright red,2 to 3 minutes.
  • Deglaze skillet with vodka and stir together until vodka evaporates. Add reserved pasta water to skillet and stir together until smooth, about 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Stir cream into sauce until mixture is smooth. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer together, about 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in butter and Parmesan and continue to simmer until sauce is smooth, glossy and has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 3 minutes.
  • Add cooked pasta to sauce and toss together until fully coated. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Serve with more grated Parmesan and black pepper.



Make Ahead: 
  • The pasta can be cooked and stored in an airtight container up to 3 days. The sauce can be made up to 5 days ahead of time and also stored in an airtight container (separate from the sauce) until ready to use.

    When ready to serve, pour sauce into a large saucepan and simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 10 minutes. Stir pasta into sauce and continue to simmer for an additional 5 minutes until pasta has heated through. Serve.
Freeze Ahead: 
  • The pasta can be made, stored in an airtight container and frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw completely in refrigerator and stir into heated sauce until completely heated through.

    To freeze sauce ahead of time, make sauce until it's time to add cream. Cool completely, then store partially made sauce in an airtight container for up to 3 months. When ready to serve, thaw sauce in refrigerator. Heat sauce in a saucepan until heated through, then stir in cream and simmer. Adjust seasonings before adding pasta and tossing together. Simmer until heated through and serve. 


Calories: 861kcalCarbohydrates: 72gProtein: 20gFat: 52gSaturated Fat: 27gCholesterol: 140mgSodium: 764mgPotassium: 862mgFiber: 5gSugar: 10gVitamin A: 2421IUVitamin C: 15mgCalcium: 289mgIron: 3mg
Keyword pasta recipe, pasta sauce, vodka sauce
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!