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Fettuccine with Vodka Sauce
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5 from 2 votes

Fettuccine with Vodka Sauce

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 6
Author: Pam - For the Love of Cooking / Original by America's Test Kitchen


  • 1 28 oz can whole tomatoes, drained, juice reserved
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 small sweet yellow onion minced
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1/3 cup vodka
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 lb fettuccine cooked in salted water, per instructions
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil minced
  • Parmesan grated, for serving


  • Drain the tomato juice and set aside.
  • Puree half of the tomatoes in a food processor or with an immersion blender, until smooth.
  • Dice the remaining half of the tomatoes into 1/2 inch pieces, discarding the cores.
  • Combine the pureed and diced tomatoes in a liquid measuring cup (you should have about 1 2/3 cups).
  • Add the reserved tomato juice to equal 2 cups total.
  • Heat the olive oil in a small Dutch oven or heavy bottomed sauce pot over medium heat until shimmering.
  • Add the minced onion, tomato paste, and crushed red pepper flakes to the pot and cook, stirring often, for 3 minutes, or until the onion is light golden.
  • Add the minced garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 30 seconds.
  • Add the tomatoes and season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and add the vodka.
  • Return the pan to the heat and turn the heat up to medium high heat and simmer briskly until the alcohol flavor is cooked off, 8 -10 minutes; stir frequently and lower the heat to medium if the simmering becomes to vigorous.
  • Stir in the cream and cook until hot, about 1 minute.
  • Meanwhile, cook fettuccine in salted boiling water, per package instructions just shy of al dente.
  • Drain the pasta reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid.
  • Add the pasta to the vodka sauce and toss to coat evenly over medium heat until the pasta absorbs some of the sauce, 1 - 2 minutes.
  • Adjust the consistency of the sauce with the reserved water if needed.
  • Add the basil and mix well.
  • Serve with parmesan on the side. Enjoy.