This Pasta Puttanesca is so easy and delicious! In the time it takes you to boil the water, you can put together the no cook pasta sauce!
What Does Pasta Puttanesca Mean?
I first made this Pasta Puttanesca back in 2009. I make it all summer long and even in the winter and I can’t believe that I haven’t updated the photos or actually entered a recipe card! Well, I’m back today to fix that.
I suppose most of you know what the name “pasta puttanesca” comes from, but in the slight chance that there are a few of you that don’t – it means “whore’s pasta.” Or something close to that.
It is said that it’s because the pasta sauce is so quick and easy to make the puttanas could make it in between clients.
Some agree with that and some don’t.
What everyone can agree on is that pasta puttanesca is quick, easy and delicious. Perfect for a quick easy meal no matter what your chosen profession.
Ingredients to Make Pasta Puttanesca
I almost always have the ingredients I need to make this easy vegetarian pasta.
Olive Oil – Since this makes up the no cook sauce, choose one that is flavorful and that you like.
Black Olives – Kalamata Olives preferred.
Anchovies – I like the ones that come in jars instead of canned, but you can use whatever you prefer.
Capers – I buy big jars from Costco, though the ones packed in salt are supposed to be better – I can never find them.
Fresh Parsley – can use basil if you’d like.
Red Pepper Flakes – for a little heat.
Tomatoes – I used cherry tomatoes because that’s what my garden was producing. If you use large ripe tomatoes you will have a saucier sauce. You can also used canned tomatoes.
Pasta – I used a whole wheat cappelini – you can use your favorite pasta.
How to Make No Cook Pasta Sauce
Making this pasta recipe is so easy!! The sauce is so no cook, so the flavors are so fresh!
Start a pot of water to boil.
Prep your veggies: Coarsely chop the tomatoes, parsley and black olives. Finely chop the capers, anchovies, and garlic. Add them to a large bowl along with olive oil and red pepper flakes.
Cook the pasta, drain it and add it to the bowl. Toss the pasta with the sauce, taste and adjust seasonings! We like to serve ours with Parmesan cheese, if you want to keep this vegetarian, you can substitute a vegetarian cheese or omit the cheese.
This is the easiest pasta recipe ever and it is so good! You won’t believe how these few ingredients can come together so quickly and be so flavorful.
The anchovies and capers add a little zing, the tomatoes are sweet, and the parsley brings a brightness to the sauce.
Tip – if you find the raw flavor of garlic and anchovies a bit much, just add them last to the bowl so that they are on top of the other sauce ingredients. Then when you add the hot pasta, it cooks them a bit first. You can leave it sit for a few minutes before tossing.
More Easy Pasta Recipes:
Roasted Vegetable Pasta – the vegetables roast easily in the oven while you cook the pasta!
Pasta with Broccoli and Capers – another meatless pasta that we love!
Instant Pot Pasta all Vodka – use your Instant Pot to make this classic pasta recipe – all in one pot!
Easy Weeknight Pasta Bolognese – yes, you can have a delicious bolognese sauce on a weeknight!
If you’re looking for even more pasta recipes, be sure and follow my Pasta Recipes Board on Pinterest!
- 3 1/2 cups tomatoes coarsely chopped fresh or canned
- 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley coarsely chopped
- 16 black olives pitted and chopped
- 3 tablespoons capers chopped or left whole
- 4 anchovy filets chopped
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes or more to taste
- 1 lb Vermicelli or spahgettini or your favorite thin pasta
- 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese freshly grated (omit for vegetarian)
- In a large bowl combine the tomatoes, parsley, black olives, capers, anchovies, olive oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes.
- In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the pasta according to directions.
- Drain the pasta and add to the tomato mixture. Toss. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
- Serve with fresh grated Parmesan Cheese.
This post was originally published in 2009 and has been updated for 2019.