Whole Wheat Penne alla Vodka


At our household we eat plenty of pasta. It is cheap, fast to cook, versatile and what could really go wrong with a pasta dish?

Penne alla vodka its a pretty easy recipe to make, however you can pay as much as $25-30 at a restaurant, nonsense. This is a very fast version and very tasty at the same time. Some versions use basil rather than parsley but I have always used parsley.



Whole Wheat Penne alla Vodka

Miryam's original recipe

Yield: 4-6 servings


1 pound whole wheat penne pasta
1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 medium tomatoes, chopped, optional
1 tablespoon tomato puree
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Salt to taste
1/3 - 1/2 cup vodka
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese.


At medium high heat add the oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion and garlic and cook for about 3-5 minutes. Add fresh chopped tomatoes and pepper flakes and cook for another 2-3 minutes stirring occasionally.

Stir in the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste and salt. Add the vodka and simmer, stirring frequently for 10 minutes to cook off the vodka. Stir in the cream and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Add parsley, grated cheeses and cooked pasta to the pan, combine  and serve.

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  1. I don’t have a rice cooker, so could this be done in a slow cooker? Thanks!

  2. I have always loved rice and beans – I cannot wait to try your version!

  3. I’m a big fan of rice and beans, but have never made them in my rice cooker. Yum!

  4. Oh my! I am in love with this recipe! So yummy. Take me away to the Carribean!!

  5. I grew up eating rice, but seldom tried the combo with beans. Must give this a try soon.

  6. Love a good caribbean recipe….especially in the winter. I may not be able to take a vacation right now, but I can always bring the vacation to me!

  7. This rice looks WONDERFUL, my friend! I am a sucker for rice, so pinning it for later!!

  8. Did you drain the beans and tomatoes?

  9. No, thank you! I am going to make it this week coming. :)

  10. I made this tonight for dinner….YAMMmmmmmm!! So easy yand sooo tasty!! What a great recipe. I don’t have a rice cooker so just made it in a normal pan, and the rice sticked a bit to the bottom which was the best part ! ! Very good with a bit of Yoghurt at the side (makes it kinda mexican, but goes really well with the rice).

  11. Who knew you could cook an entire me in a rice cooker! Never even occurred to me. Threw everything in mine with chicken tonight and my husband and boys devoured it – me minus the chicken. Love this site.

  12. No rice cooker. I cooked my brown rice, cooked other ingredients separately, then combined all. Yum. This is a keeper. Great way to get my daily turmeric. Thanks for a great recipe.

  13. Will the dish be the same without the tomatoes? I have a high sensitivity to raw tomatoes and I try to stay away from them. Thanks!

  14. Could you clarify what celtic salt is?

  15. Is that cilantro in the image?  

  16. This was so easy and I forgot to saute the garlic, making it even easier! My husband and I had it for dinner last night!

  17. I didn’t saute the garlic either and it was very delicious!  Thanks for this easy, delicious meal!

  18. WOW.   This recipe is a big HIT at our bourse.   

  19. In your opening comments you said the rice was “nothing short but amazing” – it’s supposed to be “short of amazing” – thought you’d like to know!

  20. This was amazing! My whole family loved it!

  21. I think this is so cool.

  22. Amazing Caribbean rice dish!  Thanks so much for this post. I used it as a side with slow cooker Pernil Pork, and fried plantains, rather than as a meal on its own.  The combination made the perfect Caribbean meal!  I don’t own a rice cooker so I tossed everything in a 6 quart pot, brought it to a boil, then simmered for 45 minutes, after I sautéed the garlic in the pot.  I did cook my kidney beans in the slow cooker the night before and froze them in 15 ounce potions for future use, all but the 15 ounces I used in this recipe.  I really don’t care for the taste of canned beans and it’s so easy to cook and freeze my own from dried beans, preferably organic.  I usually keep a stash of unseasoned cooked pinto, kidney, white, black, and garbanzo beans in the freezer to use in recipes.  I really do recommend it as they taste soooo much better than canned!

    • Thanks so much for you comment and suggestions. I 100 % totally agree that dried beans are way better than canned. I am glad that the recipe was a huge hit. Thanks for visiting my blog :-)

  23. Do you think black beans would work in this? Planning on using this recipe to use with Jerk chicken in an island wrap!

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