Spaghetti alla Puttanesca

Spaghetti alla Puttanesca

Mmmmm… pasta. When fall starts rolling in and the temperature starts dropping, one of my favorite comfort foods is a nice big bowl of pasta with red sauce.

This is a classic southern Italian dish, and one of my favorite ways to spice up normal tomato sauce. I love the saltiness of the olives, the heat of the red pepper flakes, and the strong taste of garlic, all mixed into delicious, tangy and slightly sweet crushed tomatoes.

And while the origin of the sauce’s name may have less than savory origins, this is one of my favorite savory dishes, hands down 🙂

Spaghetti alla Puttanesca

I love using big slices of garlic here- but you can mince yours more finely if you prefer it a little smaller. Same goes for the olives- I love biting into them, but if you’d like them more blended into the sauce, you can chop them more finely.

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Spaghetti alla Puttanesca
Prep time

Cook time

Total time


Serves: 4

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, sliced lengthwise
  • ¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup kalamata olives, pitted and chopped coarsely
  • 1 can crushed San Marzano tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp capers
  • 2 tbsp fresh Italian parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 3-4 cups of water
  • kosher salt
  • 1 lb spaghetti

  1. In a saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic slices and chili peppers and cook, stirring to keep the garlic from burning, 3 minutes.
  2. Add the olives and stir again. Pour in the crushed tomatoes and add the capers. Give everything a big stir to get it all incorporated. Afterwards, in a large pot, boil 3-4 quarts of water over high heat.
  3. Once the water is boiling, add a nice handful of kosher salt, around 2-3 tsps. Add the pasta and cook until al dente- or just very slightly chewy, about 8-9 minutes (depending on the brand you use). Drain the pasta.
  4. Add drained pasta to the saucepan with the puttanesca sauce, and toss to coat. Garnish with fresh parsley, stir again and serve. Enjoy!

Spaghetti alla Puttanesca

What is your favorite comfort food once the cold starts coming to your neighborhood?

Happy Eating 🙂

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