Arrabiata Sauce

Arrabiata Sauce

For dry and store bought pasta, I love a sauce with a good kick of spice.  This recipe can be made in advance, in double or triple measurements, and frozen in 3-4 cup serving sizes.  For this recipe, I used a tri-color gnocchi, but almost any pasta will pair nicely with this sauce.






  • 6 oz. pancetta or thick cut bacon, chopped into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1/2 a yellow onion
  • 4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • a good handful of fresh basil, leaves picked
  • a small handful of fresh oregano
  • 3 very generous pinches of crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 pinch of nutmeg
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 large tin crushed tomatoes
  • 1 small wineglass of red wine


In a large saucepan, fry the bacon or pancetta over medium heat until the fat has been rendered, but the bacon or pancetta is not yet crispy.  Remove the cooked bacon or pancetta from the pan, and set on some kitchen paper to drain.

Add the basil and oregano to the pan over medium high heat, to crisp the leaves.  Cook for about 90 seconds, then add the onion.  Cook for another minute, then add the garlic and cook for another minute or so.  Add the crushed red pepper flakes and the nutmeg, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent.  Add the wine to the mixture and stir for a minute or two. 

Add the crushed tomatoes to the saucepan, and stir the bacon back in.  Season with salt and pepper, and taste to make sure the sauce has a bit of spice.  Simmer covered over low heat for about 30 minutes.  Taste again, and adjust seasoning and add more red pepper flakes if desired, simmering uncovered for another 10 minutes.

Serve over cooked pasta, along with a lovely green salad!  Enjoy!