Try this penne arrabbiata recipe, then check out our tomato pasta bake, spaghetti arrabbiata, tomato pappardelle with shallot sauce, baked feta pasta and more pasta recipes.

How to make the perfect penne arrabbiata: cook's tips

  • Before adding the chilli, eat a small piece to check the level of heat and adjust the quantities accordingly.
  • If you have leftover chillies, put them in the freezer and grate straight from frozen into dishes to avoid food waste.
  • To check your pasta is al dente, take a piece out of the boiling water, and when cool enough, bite it. You should feel a slight resistance but overall, the pasta should be soft and edible.

How to store penne arrabbiata: Any leftovers will keep in the fridge in an airtight container for up to three days.

How to serve penne arrabbiata: Serve with a crisp rocket salad tossed in good-quality olive oil, with ciabatta or focaccia on the side to mop up any leftover sauce.

Penne arrabbiata recipe


  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to serve
  • 6 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1-2 red chillies, depending on heat, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 800g finely chopped tinned tomatoes
  • 20g basil, leaves picked, plus extra to serve
  • 400g penne pasta
  • 50g vegetarian parmesan, grated, to serve


  • STEP 1

    Put the oil, garlic and chilli in a large frying pan. Cook for 3-4 mins until the garlic starts to sizzle and crisp around the edges. Add the tomatoes and a pinch of sugar, bring to a simmer and cook for 10 mins until slightly thickened. Mix in the basil leaves and allow to wilt, then season to taste with sea salt, freshly ground black pepper and a pinch of sugar.

  • STEP 2

    Bring a large pan of heavily salted water to the boil and cook the pasta following pack instructions. Once al dente, drain, saving a mug of the cooking water, and add the pasta to the sauce. Toss to combine, adding a splash of the cooking water, if needed, to help the sauce cling to the pasta.

  • STEP 3

    Divide between four plates and serve topped with the grated parmesan, a few basil leaves and another drizzle of oil.

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