Vodka pasta sauce goes viral online with foodies everywhere

Food 10/08/2020

While we are still enduring the colder wintery months in New Zealand, this recipe could be a good one to save for when we start getting warmer and longer nights.

The recipe is for a vodka pasta sauce, and has gone viral on social media after celebrity A-List model Gigi Hadid shared it.

The sauce is delicious and wholesome, yet summery and fun and it is almost guaranteed to step your pasta up a notch!

The vodka is said to add a smooth finish to the pasta sauce and helps marry all other flavours perfectly.

A few people have shared tips on making the vodka pasta sauce recipe. The first is even if you are tempted to add a dash more vodka - don't. There is a fine line between a balance of flavours and a mismatched foody cocktail.

If you have kids and are worried about using vodka in the recipe, some people have suggested that subbing it for balsamic vinegar is a great idea (although not as good!).


Serves 4

  • 1 shallot
  • 3 Tbsp butter (unsalted)
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • 200g passata
  • 2 Tbsp triple distilled vodka
  • 450g pasta shells (or penne!)
  • 120ml double cream
  • 50g grated Parmigiano Reggiano, plus more to serve
  • A sprig of fresh basil
  • 1/2 tsp dried crushed red chilli
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Soften the shallot and garlic in olive oil, in a pan on a low heat.
  2. Add the chilli flakes, passata, basil and seasoning before cooking gently for a further 10 minutes. 
  3. Meanwhile, bring a pan of salted water to the boil to cook the penne 'al dente'.
  4. Drain the pasta, melt the butter in another pan and toss the pasta in it to coat.
  5. Add the cream along with your tomato sauce on a high heat, stirring to combine completely.
  6. Finally, add the vodka, toss again.
  7. Take it off the heat, add in half the parmesan until melted then sprinkle the last of it over the top with roughly torn basil to serve.