Classic Penne all’Arrabbiata is an authentic quick, easy and very tasty pasta dish that is ready in about 15 minutes.

A closeup showing the tomato sauce on the pasta and fresh basil

If you like your pasta a little garlicky with a little kick, this dish is for you.

This easy pasta dish originates from the Lazio region of Italy, its principal city being Rome. Arrabbiata, Italian for angry, refers to the sauce being angry stemming  from the addition of fresh chili.

I love making this dish with fresh tomatoes, but they’re not always sweet and in season so this recipe is made using good canned chopped tomatoes so I, and you, can make it all year round.

Make it as spicy as you like

Variations on the spiciness can also come from red pepper flakes. The amount of heat I add to this recipe (3 small chili peppers) is about as spicy as I would like to go without losing the enjoyment of the dish.

Classic penne all'arrabbiata on a serving spoon

This Classic Penne all’Arrabbiata, which is usually shortened to just penne arrabbiata,  is perfect for entertaining. I also like to whip up a batch for a quiet night at home with a movie and glass of wine. This dish would work as a side dish to a chicken or fish dish and makes great leftovers.

A bowl of classic penne all'arrabbiata with fresh basil and a pan it was cooked in

More Pasta Recipes:

If you’ve made this or any other recipe, please leave a comment below. I love to hear from my readers.

Yield: 4

Classic Penne all'Arrabbiata

A white bowl filled with penne all'arrabbiata

A quick and easy tomato sauce that is a little garlicy, a little spicy with fresh basil tossed with penne.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 3 small red chili peppers, finely chopped or 1 1/2 teaspoons chili flakes
  • 42 ounces (1191 grams) can/tin diced/chopped or whole tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt (or to taste)
  • 1 pound (454 grams) penne pasta
  • 2 teaspoons fresh basil or parsley chopped
  • Grated Parmesan cheese (optional)


  1. Bring a large pan of water to boil for pasta.
  2. If using whole canned tomatoes, mash with a fork until they are roughly broken up.
  3. While the water is coming up a boil, add the oil to a sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and chili and cook for 2 minutes, do not brown the garlic. Add the tomatoes and salt, turn up the heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes. Taste for seasoning, add more salt and spice if needed.
  4. Add the penne to the boiling water and cook the penne according to package directions, 9-10 minutes.
  5. Once the pasta is cooked, use a slotted spoon and add the pasta (draining the water) right from the water to the sauce. Mix well. Serve warm garnished with chopped basil or parsley.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 193Total Fat 5gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 4gCholesterol 1mgSodium 548mgCarbohydrates 10gFiber 1gSugar 2gProtein 2g

This nutrition calculation is provided by Nutronix that is only a guideline and not intended for any particular diet.