Penne Arrabbiata Sauce Recipe | Spicy Pasta Arrabiata

Being a lover of spicy food, penne all’arrabbiata is one of my favorite Italian dishes. Arrabbiata means “angry” in Italian.

Arrabiata sauce is most often used with penne pasta but it’s also great with other pasta shapes like spaghetti and rigatoni. You might also want to try this sauce on chicken or shrimp. Here’s my favorite penne arrabbiata sauce recipe.


1 lb penne pasta
1/4 c. olive oil
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 c. minced fresh parsley
3 cloves minced garlic
1 can (28 oz) whole plum tomatoes
salt and pepper to taste
grated parmesan or pecorino romano cheese (optional)


Place a large pot of water on the stove to boil.

Crush the tomatoes with a fork and set them aside.

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and saute until it is golden brown, being careful not to burn it.

Turn down flame to medium low.

Add red pepper flakes, tomatoes, salt, and pepper.

Return the heat to medium and cook 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. The mixture should become saucy.

While the sauce is cooking, bring the water to a boil and add a dash of salt. Add the pasta and cook until it is al dente.

Drain the pasta in a colander. Do not rinse with water (it will hold onto the sauce better that way!)

Add drained pasta to sauce and mix it together. Sprinkle parsley over the top and serve with grated parmesan or pecorino romano cheese.

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