Penne A’la Vodka (with Scallops)

It’s been a while since I’ve shared a recipe. A few weeks ago we were celebrating Kent’s birthday, and I was trying to figure out what to make. We’d recently had steaks, so I didn’t want to make those again. I was wracking my brain. We love pasta, but rarely eat it. #carbs Anyway, I remembered something we haven’t had in a long time and B-I-N-G-O, I knew what we were having. Penne A’la Vodka.

Penne A’la Vodka

Servings 4


  • 1 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 T Butter
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 Shallots, minced
  • 1 C Vodka
  • 1 C Chicken Stock/broth
  • 1 32oz Crushed Tomato
  • S&P
  • 1/2 C Heavy Cream
  • Fresh Basil Leaves
  • Shrimp or Scallops
  • 1 Box Penne
  • Parmesan Cheese


  • Heat large skillet, add oil, butter, garlic & shallots
  • Saute 3-5 minutes
  • Add Vodka, reduce by half (2-3 minutes)
  • Add chicken stock & tomatoes, bring sauce to a boil and simmer 5-10 minutes
  • Season with S&P
  • While sauce simmers, cook pasta according to pkg leaving slightly al' dente
  • Saute scallops or shrimp in separate skillet
  • Stir cream into sauce. When sauce returns to a boil, turn down heat to keep warm.
  • Drain pasta and toss with sauce. Add scallops/shrimp and top with basil. If desired, add shredded Parmesan cheese. (fresh is best)


If making for 2 people, reserve half the sauce before adding basil and freeze (cook only half of the pasta)
Fun story: I got this recipe from my neighbor, who got it from our other neighbor…so Brandi, if you’re reading this. Thanks friend!!! This Penne A’la Vodka is delicious and we love it!

Not only is this pasta dish easy, it’s as good as any version you’ll find in any Italian restaurant. Kent is a huge fan of scallops, so that’s what I decided to make with it. I was super excited that when I seared these, and they turned out perfectly. In the past, I’ve had a hard time making that happen. I used this method, and will from now on. I left out the butter, and I bought my scallops in the freezer section of Trader Joe’s.

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  1. October 7, 2019 / 8:12 am

    this looks really good. I love vodka sauce.
    x, Julie |

  2. Living on Cloud Nine
    October 7, 2019 / 4:30 am

    Hey, Hey, they say it’s birthday……..Whoop Whoop!! Recipe looks delightful but you, my friend, bring the party!!!!! Extra HUGS!! xo

  3. October 7, 2019 / 5:09 am

    I’ve never tried vodka and pasta before but this looks delicious! Thanks for sharing!

    Hope that you had a great weekend. We had a picnic today, taking advantage of the public holiday and great weather 🙂 I just posted my weekday wear linkup, I’d love you to join! 🙂 I’ve got a scarf giveaway on my blog right now too!

    Away From Blue

    • October 12, 2019 / 7:45 am

      Thanks Mica!!! I was scared by the whole idea of vodka in the sauce ( I don’t like the taste of alcohol) but it’s really delicious! XO

  4. Gina Daily
    October 7, 2019 / 6:19 am

    This looks delicious! And how appropriate that you’re sharing a birthday recipe since a little bird mentioned it was YOUR birthday today! Happy Birthday to you! I hope it’s a great one!

    • October 12, 2019 / 7:45 am

      Aw, thank you Gina! I had a good day. It was very low key. XO

  5. October 7, 2019 / 7:18 am

    Oh sweetheart, you had me at pasta. Then again at vodka, I am drunkenly excited to try this dish!
    And a little bird flying around cloud nine tells me it’s your birthday – have a fabulously lovely day!
    Hugs, Mary x.

  6. October 7, 2019 / 8:12 am

    I’m in food coma now looking at this gorgeous meal !! Yum ! Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  7. Carrie @ Curly Crafty Mom
    October 7, 2019 / 4:10 pm

    Oh, this looks SO good!! I have some scallops from TJ’s in the freezer. Now I know what to make with them! Happy birthday! 🙂


    • October 12, 2019 / 7:37 am

      Well that’s good timing!!! Hope you make it and like it! XO

  8. October 7, 2019 / 4:10 pm

    You had me at heavy cream!! This is something I get at the restaurants a lot, but I’ve never tried to make it. Thanks for this…now I can do it myself.

    • October 12, 2019 / 7:37 am

      LOL. How could anything with that be bad, right?! Yes ma’am, give it a try!!! XOXO

  9. October 7, 2019 / 4:23 pm

    You had this Carb Queen at ‘pasta,’ Lady! I’m tempted to try this without the scallops! I hope you are enjoying something super yummy for your special day!! Happy Birthday, Lisa!

  10. October 7, 2019 / 5:38 pm

    This looks really tasty! We like our pasta and it’s so easy on those busy nights. And the whole family likes it so we often eat it about once a week during fall and winter. I can’t wait to try this one!

    • October 12, 2019 / 7:37 am

      I use to make pasta about once a week and we loved it…just had to cut back #carbs. Give it a try!! XO

  11. Heather Bramlett
    October 7, 2019 / 6:15 pm

    YUM! Looks so good!

  12. October 8, 2019 / 4:57 am

    Yum! This sounds delicious! I love vodka sauce and scallops! I’m pinning so I can try it soon!

    Jill – Doused in Pink

    • October 12, 2019 / 7:37 am

      Oh good. I hope you give it a try. It’s so easy and delicious. XO

  13. October 8, 2019 / 6:20 pm

    Have never tried to prepare scallops but surely do love them. And this sounds like the perfect side.

    • October 12, 2019 / 7:37 am

      These were the best scallops I ever made. YAY! We eat this as a main dish…very filling?

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