The Best Pasta To Pair With A Vodka Sauce

There are certain questions that remain mysterious when you start cooking for yourself. Why does a watched pot truly never boil? Is there a way to come back from an over-salted dish? And, for goodness sake, what type of pasta do you pair with which sauce?

The beauty of pasta is its ability to be a blank canvas for a multitude of flavors and, thankfully, there's a sauce for every occasion. Of all the pasta sauces you could ever learn about, there is one that may take style points for silky texture and complex flavors and that's vodka sauce.

To put it simply, vodka sauce is mainly comprised of tomatoes, heavy cream, and vodka. Some recipes add garlic and onion (or shallot,) but it's the heavy cream that makes the sauce velvety-smooth, and the vodka that makes your tongue ponder, "what is that?" No matter if you make your vodka sauce at home or buy it in-store, the big question is, what kind of pasta should you pair it with?

Madame Butterfly

There are a few pasta and sauce combinations that can't be denied, and they have every reason for you to worship them. Fettuccine with alfredo; spaghetti with bolognese, manicotti with marinara ... and, while vodka sauce is often served traditionally with penne, there's another combo that's poised to make penne super jealous.

Farfalle, or as it's commonly known, bowtie pasta, is perfect when paired with a thick and creamy vodka sauce, per Taste of Home. The ridges on the bow-tie-shaped noodle catch the sauce and hold it in place, giving you a perfect sauce to pasta ratio with every bite.

Farfalle has a long history of pleasing pasta lovers too! The pasta itself dates back to the 1500s, originating in Northern Italy's Emilia-Romagna and Lombardy regions, as noted by The Spruce Eats. And, an even more adorable detail: "Farfalle" is the Italian word for butterflies, which might be an even more whimsical visual than a bunch of bow ties in a bowl. Next time you're feeling whimsical and decide to experiment with vodka sauce, try pairing it with its new soulmate.