While made entirely from pantry ingredients, this vegan vodka pasta is no joke! Let me start by saying that it's super easy. Simply stir up a few ingredients in a pan and add pasta. Boom. Dinner is done and served and totally dinner-party-worthy. And the best part is that we use only 10 shelf-stable ingredients that you probably have already!
For some reason, I always thought Vodka sauce was something only professional chefs could get right. But that couldn't be further from the truth! One luscious bite and I was whisked away to one of those romantic dinners in the movies -- the one where the couple is sharing a creamy pasta and making eyes at each other across the table.
But in this movie, I'm looking lovingly at my pasta. I snuck the first bite straight from the skillet. And then a few bites more... I recommend making this one in private so you can enjoy sneaky bites all by yourself in your own foodie bliss.
Whenever I make a fancy dinner just for myself, this is always at the top of the list. And I eat it straight out of the skillet 😉
Why you'll love this recipe
- 15 minutes from start to finish
- pantry-friendly ingredients
- easy to scale up or down
- creamy sauce and tangy vodka
Vegan Vodka Sauce Ingredients
This vodka sauce needs only 4 main ingredients and 5 common spices for restaurant-worthy quality!
- olive oil
- tomato paste
- coconut milk
The perfect spice blend:
- minced garlic (fresh or freeze-dried)
- dried basil leaves (this brand is the most flavorful)
- salt and pepper
- red pepper flakes -- for a little kick!
Just add freshly cooked pasta in any shape and you're all set! Choose a lentil or chickpea pasta for extra vegan protein.
Does vodka sauce have alcohol in it?
Vodka sauce uses a small amount of alcohol during the cooking process but the final sauce does not contain alcohol. This is because the alcohol burns off when heated, leaving no alcohol behind. Vodka sauce is safe for children to eat too.
In this recipe, each serving has only ½ tablespoon of vodka before the alcohol is boiled off.
What does vodka do in pasta?
In pasta sauce, vodka leaves behind a tangy flavor after the alcohol burns off. This tangy flavor is what makes vodka sauce taste different from other sauces.
How to make Vodka Sauce from scratch
- Saute garlic in olive oil until golden brown and fragrant.
- Add tomato paste and cook for about 3 minutes, stirring constantly, until it turns a deeper shade of red.
- Add spices and vodka. Watch the alcohol sizzle and burn off.
- Add cream. Simmer for 5 minutes.
It's done! Add your pasta and enjoy.
The ingredients for this recipe conveniently come in the perfect quantity to use with a 1 pound (16 ounce) standard pasta package. To use the full 1 pound package, you will want to double the recipe (use the 2x feature in the recipe card).
Gluten Free Pasta
Gluten-free pasta typically comes in a 12-ounce package. Use about ⅔ of the pasta in this sized package with the ingredients listed below.
Check out the ingredients photo earlier in this post to see the gluten-free and celiac-friendly brands I used to make this recipe.
- Foolproof Gluten-Free French Baguette
- Best Easy Tuscan Chicken Salad (leave out the chicken for a vegan side salad)
- House Favorite Vegan Minestrone Soup
- Olive Garden Copycat Minestrone Soup recipe
- Classy Dairy-Free Zuppa Toscana in one pot with clean ingredients
More Vegan Pasta Recipes
- One Pot Lentil Pasta
- Herby Vegan Alfredo Pasta
- Creamy Sun-dried Tomato Pasta
- Sneaky Pea Pesto Pasta
- Vegan Broccoli Mac and Cheese
Flashy Vegan Vodka Pasta from your pantry
Amazing 15-minute Vegan Vodka Pasta recipe with 10 common pantry ingredients! Smooth, flavorful, and easy.
- Prep Time: 5
- Cook Time: 10
- Total Time: 15 minutes
- Yield: 3-4 1x
- Category: Dinner, Meal, Pasta
- Method: Skillet
- Cuisine: Italian
- Diet: Vegan
For the sauce:
- 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
3 ounces canned tomato paste*
2 ½ tablespoons vodka
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- ½ tablespoon dried basil leaves
- ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ½ 14-ounce can coconut milk
- ½ pound (8 ounces, 225 grams) dried pasta, cooked according to package instructions
- Garlic: In an 8-inch skillet on low heat, add olive oil and garlic. Saute garlic, stirring on occasion, until fragrant and golden brown.
- Tomato Paste: Add tomato paste and stir constantly until the paste turns a darker shade of red (about 3 minutes). It's okay if the paste and the oil do not fully mix at this point.
- Add vodka and spices. Allow the alcohol from the vodka to bubble off (about 2 minutes).
- Add coconut milk and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, remove from heat and toss with cooked pasta. Serve warm.
Storage: Store leftover pasta in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days. I recommend reheating in a small pot on the stove with a little extra water or in the microwave, adding a sprinkle of water as needed
*For 3 ounces of canned tomato paste, I buy a 6 ounce can of tomato paste and use half.
To use a full 1 pound package of pasta, you will want to double the recipe (use the 2x feature in the recipe card).
Gluten-free pasta typically comes in a 12-ounce package. Use about ⅔ of the pasta in this sized package to get ½ pound of dried pasta. Check out the ingredients photo earlier in the blog post to see brands/sizes that I use to make this recipe.
Keywords: vegan vodka sauce with coconut milk, vegan vodka sauce no cashews, vodka pasta recipe
I hope this Vegan Vodka Pasta hits the spot!
So good and simple! It's nice not having to run to the store. Thank you Jamie - another winning recipe!
Thank you for sharing Carole! I'm so glad I saved you a trip to the store!
Not only does this recipe take minimal ingredients, it also takes hardly any time to whip up! It’s deliciously creamy with the addition of the coconut milk. I highly recommend trying it!
Thank you so much for the review Bren! And I'm so glad you enjoyed it 🙂
The sauce is deliciously creamy! We sauteed some mushrooms with the garlic which was also a nice addition.
Thank you for the review Elizabeth and I'm glad you enjoyed it! It does taste great with mushrooms.
I love this vodka sauce recipe! It's way tastier than the other recipes out there 🙂
I'm so glad the pasta turned out so well for you!