Penne Alla Vodka – A classic Italian pasta dish with smooth and creamy tomato-based sauce is a favorite comfort food of mine!
I love to cook food that I have enjoyed in restaurants and this recipe is my attempt to recreate one of those delicious dishes. I have made this pasta on stovetop for a long time and couldn’t wait to try it in my Instant Pot.
I like the tomato sauce made with pureeing a can of peeled plum tomatoes, with a spoonful of minced fresh garlic.
Cooking the pasta in the Instant Pot gives it a more creamy texture as the process does not require draining any extra water from separately boiling the pasta. If you have enjoyed my Pasta Caprese recipe in Instant Pot, I would love to know which one you like better!
I recently discovered Trader Joe’s gluten free pasta varieties and I love them all! I use the brown rice pasta in this recipe and the pasta cooks al dente in 4 mins followed by quick release. Definitely helps take away the guilt of eating a ton of carbs while you enjoy this dish.
In the past, I have used diced ripe plum tomatoes, jar of pasta sauce or at times canned tomato puree. Depending on the consistency of the sauce, I simply use an immersion blender to smoothen out the sauce as it is simmering. You may decide to leave the sauce chunky but I have some picky eaters in the house that would pick out all the tomato pieces!
This dish can be made wholesome by adding some sautéed chicken, shrimp, peas or mushrooms. I would sauté the meat or veggies in the Instant Pot as the first step in some oil with salt and pepper. Keep them aside and follow the rest of the recipe. Simply add the toppings on the pasta before serving and enjoy a yummy meal! Sometimes I stir in few handful of baby spinach in the end just before serving.
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- 1 LB pasta I used Trader Joe’s organic brown rice penne pasta
- 28 oz tomato puree I like to puree a can of san marzano peeled plum tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small onion diced
- 6 garlic cloves minced
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes optional
- ½ cup vodka
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 cups water
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ¼ cup parmigiano reggiano grated
- 1/4 cup Parsley chopped
Turn the Instant Pot to Saute mode and heat oil.
Add onions, garlic and red pepper flakes. Mix well and cook for 2 minutes with a glass lid on.
- Add vodka, mix well and cook for another 2 mins to reduce down the vodka.
Add tomato puree, pasta, salt and 2 cups of water. Close the Instant Pot and Manual/pressure cook for 4 minutes (Note, the cook time on Trader Joe’s brown rice pasta is 7-10 mins) followed by Quick Release.
- Add cream, parsley and grated cheese. Mix well. Serve hot.
Note: For any other type or brand of pasta, set Instant Pot to Manual(HI) for half the time that is specified as cooking time on the pasta box.
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Hey there! I am a techie turned recipe developer, cooking instructor, and food blogger. I love food and enjoy developing easy and healthy recipes for busy lifestyles. I live New Jersey with my husband and two sons.