Trumpet Vodka Tomato Sauce

February 11, 2019

Author Notes:

This recipe came to me from my son's elementary school wonderful trumpet teacher. Don't worry too much over the vodka - I use one of those small bottles usually found at the cashier area in a liquor store (instead of purchasing a large bottle.) Plus, the alcohol dissipates with cooking. This can be made ahead and stored tightly-sealed in the refrigerator; just reheat in a saucepan or microwave. Most any pasta works with this sauce - my family likes cavatappi and penne.


Makes: 3 cups
Prep time: 5 min
Cook time: 30 min


  • 3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup vodka (or use a whole tiny bottle)
  • 28 ounces can of crushed tomatoes (not puree)
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • olive oil and salt & pepper
In This Recipe


  1. The recipe secret is the cooking of the garlic (this makes the sauce GREAT as opposed to good). Heat a little olive oil in a large fry pan (large enough to hold all the ingredients) and add the garlic. Stir around and cook till it is golden brown.
  2. Add the red pepper flakes to your pan and saute further till the garlic turns a dark brown.
  3. Add the onion, stir and cook for three minutes.
  4. Add the vodka, stir, and reduce the liquid by half.
  5. Keep stirring and add the crushed tomatoes and cream.
  6. You can serve the sauce at this point or continue to cook to your desired consistency. Check the taste and add salt & pepper if you wish. Prepared meats, vegetables, and fresh herbs such as basil, oregano and parsley meld great in this sauce. Serve with your favorite pasta and grated Parmesan. Godere!

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