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Lighter Penne à la Vodka

Yunhee Kim
Prep time 5 mins
Cook time 20 mins
Yield Makes 8 servings


  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups bottled marinara sauce, preferably no-sugar-added
  • 1 1/2 cups 1% low-fat milk or plain soy milk
  • 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 pound whole-grain penne
  • 1/4 cup vodka (inexpensive)
  • 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, for garnish

Nutrition Information

  • calories 299
  • fat 4 g
  • satfat 1 g
  • monofat 2 g
  • polyfat 1 g
  • protein 11 g
  • carbohydrate 49 g
  • fiber 4 g
  • cholesterol 4 mg
  • iron 2 mg
  • sodium 409 mg
  • calcium 76 mg

How to Make It

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add salt when simmering.

  2. Warm marinara in a saucepan over medium heat. Slowly add milk, stirring until combined. Bring to a simmer, then lower heat; simmer until sauce reduces slightly. Add crushed red pepper.

  3. Add penne to boiling water. Cook until almost done; add vodka to marinara mixture, and raise heat slightly. Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup cooking water.

  4. In a large bowl, toss pasta with sauce and Parmigiano-Reggiano, adding some reserved water to thin sauce, if needed. Garnish with parsley, and serve.