In a large skillet, add 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon unsalted butter. Bring the butter and oil to medium-high heat.
Then add 1/2 medium chopped yellow onion and 2 minced garlic cloves into the pan. Stir the garlic and onion until the onion becomes translucent.
Then bring the heat to high and pour in 1/4 cup of vodka and let it cook out for about 1-2 minutes while stirring.
Now add 28 oz of canned puréed San Marzano tomatoes and 1 cup heavy whipping cream. Let the sauce simmer over low heat for about 3-4 minutes.
Add parmesan and cooked penne
In the meantime, cook 1 pound of penne pasta in a pot of salted boiling water. Once the pasta is cooked al dente, drain it, but don’t rinse.
Turn the heat off and remove the sauce from the cooktop. Then stir in 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese and add the cooked penne. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Then garnish with chopped basil and a little extra grated Parmesan cheese.
Add-ins and Substitutes
Add meat- Italian sausage, meatballs, and chopped bacon add a lot of flavor to this Penne Alla Vodka.
Add some fresh tomatoes- For more fresh notes and texture, add some diced fresh Roma tomatoes to this recipe.
Make it allergy-friendly- For a dairy-free or vegan alternative, substitute for plant-based butter and cheese, and coconut milk for heavy cream. To make it gluten-free, use your favorite penne pasta GF alternative.
Try different pasta- This tasty sauce can go with any type of pasta you have on hand, so enjoy it with rigatoni, ravioli, or linguine.