Penne With Vodka Sauce & Capicola

Total Time
Prep 15 mins
Cook 35 mins

Trying to find new pasta dishes besides the usual spaghetti and meatballs. I think this was originally posted in Eating Well Magazine.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  2. Cook penne until just tender, 12 minutes or according to package directions.
  3. Meanwhile, cook capicola (or pancetta) in a large saucepan over medium heat until crisp, about 4 minutes.
  4. Drain on a paper towel.
  5. Return the saucepan to medium-low heat; add onion and garlic and cook until the onion is translucent, about 1 minute.
  6. Increase heat to high; add vodka and bring to a boil.
  7. Boil until reduced by about half, about 2 minutes.
  8. Stir in tomatoes, half-and-half, Worcestershire sauce and crushed red pepper to taste; reduce to a simmer and cook until thickened, about 10 minutes.
  9. Drain the pasta; serve topped with the sauce and sprinkled with the capicola (or pancetta), basil and pepper.
Most Helpful

Yum. I really enjoyed this simple dish. I used pancetta and loved the kick from the red pepper flakes. Thanks, AZ for sharing a nice winner. Made for Think Pink tag.

lazyme October 10, 2015

Very much enjoyed, thank you! I didn't look closely enough and used spaghetti rather than penne, my mistake, but equally delicious! I also had to use bacon, fried and crumbled, again, it was very good. We really enjoyed this rich sauce with a bit of a kick! :) I used my own oven-roasted tomatoes, and this was a really good dinner, thank you! Made for PRMR tag game.

Karen Elizabeth September 26, 2011

I really enjoyed this...the warmth of the vodka and the zip of the chilli flakes....mmmm...
and the salt of the pancetta was great alongside the sweetness of the tomato sauce ( I whizzed my tinned tomatoes to make the sauce really smooth!).
A simple, but elegant meal...thanks!

Noo January 31, 2011