If you’re a fan of baked ziti, get ready to level up your pasta game with this baked penne vodka pasta. Imagine creamy vodka sauce embracing penne noodles then topped with fresh mozzarella cheese and baked to perfection. Its rich, creamy, full of flavor and loaded with cheese. Trust me, this Baked Penne Vodka dish is about to become your new go-to pasta dish for family dinners
Looking for more pasta bake for family dinners? Check out my Chicken Pesto Lasagna Roll Ups!
Vodka Pasta Bake is a winner for several reasons. First and foremost, it’s a breeze to make – perfect for those busy weeknights when you want something hearty without spending hours in the kitchen.
The addition of mozzarella takes this dish to the next level, creating a gooey, cheesy layer that will have the kids (and adults) coming back for more.
Whether it’s a casual Sunday supper or a special occasion, this Baked Penne Vodka Pasta with Mozzarella is a crowd-pleaser that brings people together. So, gather your loved ones, uncork the joy, and enjoy this Family-Friendly Baked Ziti Vodka Style
Ingredients for Baked Penne Vodka Pasta
- Mezze Penne Rigate:
- Tomato paste
- Heavy Cream
- Parmesan Cheese
- Fresh Mozzarella Cheese
- Red Pepper Flakes
- Italian Seasoning
- Salt and Pepper
What to Serve with Baked Vodka Pasta
Garlic Bread or Breadsticks: A classic choice! Serve garlic bread or breadsticks on the side to soak up the delicious vodka sauce.
Simple Green Salad: A crisp green salad with a light vinaigrette can provide a refreshing contrast to the richness of the pasta. Include ingredients like mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, and cucumber.
Caprese Salad: A Caprese salad featuring fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil drizzled with balsamic glaze or a light dressing adds a burst of freshness.
Roasted Vegetables: Consider using vegetables like carrots, Brussels sprouts, butternut squash, zucchini, bell peppers, and asparagus.
How to Store Baked Penne Vodka Pasta
Let the baked vodka pasta cool to room temperature before storing. This helps prevent condensation inside the storage container, which can lead to sogginess.
Transfer the pasta to an airtight container. If there are layers of cheese, consider placing a piece of parchment paper between the layers to prevent them from sticking. Refrigerator within 2 hours of baking for up to 3 days.
Reheating Vodka Pasta Bake
For the best results, preheat your oven to around 350°F (175°C). This ensures even reheating. Cover the dish with aluminum foil to prevent excessive browning or drying during reheating. Heat the pasta for approximately 15-20 minutes or until the pasta is heated through.
Microwave Method: For individual servings, you can use the microwave. Place a portion in a microwave-safe dish, cover with a damp paper towel, and heat in short intervals, stirring between each, until the desired temperature is reached.
More Easy Family Dinner Recipes
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Baked Penne Vodka Pasta
- 1 lb penne pasta
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 cup vodka
- 1 can (6oz) tomato paste
- 1 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 6 slices fresh mozzarella cheese
- 3/4 tsp Salt to taste
- 1/2 tsp groudd black pepper to taste
- Fresh basil for garnish
- Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
- Boil the penne pasta in a large pot of salted water until just al dente. Drain and set aside.
- In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the finely chopped onion and sauté until it becomes translucent. Add minced garlic and continue cooking until fragrant.
- Pour in the vodka and let it simmer for a couple of minutes, allowing the alcohol to evaporate and leaving behind a rich flavor.
- Stir in the tomato paste, ensuring it's well incorporated into the onion and garlic mixture. Cook for 2-3 minutes, allowing the tomato paste to caramelize slightly.
- Pour in the heavy cream. Season with Italian seasoning, salt and pepper to taste. Add the Parmesan cheese, stirring constantly to create a creamy and luscious sauce.
- Mix the cooked penne into the vodka sauce, ensuring every piece is coated evenly.
- Transfer the vodka pasta to a large baking dish. Top it with more parmesan cheeseI and fresh mozzarella slices.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until the cheese is golden and bubbly.
- Remove the baked penne vodka pasta from the oven, garnish with fresh basil, and let it cool for a few minutes before serving.