Spicy Sausage Rigatoni Recipe - Pinch of Yum
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Spicy Sausage Rigatoni

67 reviews / 4.8 average

This Spicy Sausage Rigatoni is so simple and SO GOOD. Chewy tubes of rigatoni swimming in a delicious sauce made of Italian sausage, San Marzano tomatoes, red wine, carrots and onions, and spices.


I think you know that I do love my vegetables, which is convenient since there are actually two good sources of veggies in this recipe (FOR REAL), but all the good veggie things aside, there are some times when you just need to find a way to get some spicy Italian sausage in your life.

And if that spicy Italian sausage can come in tandem with finely minced golden brown sautéed onions and carrots, red pepper flakes, oregano, and a splash of red wine all swimming in the magic that is San Marzano tomatoes and served on rigatoni with FRESH BASIL RIBBONS and Parmesan to infinity and beyond? Well, then, do we even need to keep talking?

Here, take a plate.

Spicy Sausage Rigatoni on a large serving bowl with a wooden spoon.
Ingredients in bowls for Spicy Sausage Rigatoni.

This is another one of those recipes that feels restaurant-fancy, but is easy easy.

You can make it for a certain special holiday coming up (❤️) or just on a normal Thursday night and feel like a Top Chef either way.

Oh, and did I mention there’s red wine all up in this pasta too? (Yes, I did, but it requires mentioning again.) Open that bottle, pour it in, and leave the rest on the table for dinner.

Spicy Sausage Rigatoni in a serving dish with wooden spoon.

Now that I’ve filled up a plate for you, bring me your wine glass and we’ll be all set to let the good meal vibes roll.

Watch How To Make This Recipe:

Common Questions About This Spicy Sausage Rigatoni

My sauce turned out a bit runny. How can I fix it?

If your sauce is too runny, either simmer everything a bit longer or just let it cool down to thicken. I also find that adding a knob of butter or a bit of Parmesan will help the sauce thicken.

Any shortcuts for chopping all of my vegetables?

Yes! You can run the vegetables through a food processor to get them uniformly chopped / minced a bit faster.

What type of red wine should I use here?

Any full-bodied red wine should work. We love using Cabernet Sauvignon or Zinfandel.

What pairs well with this pasta?

We love making our Toasted Bread and Parmesan Salad or Brussels and Kale Caesar Salad with this dish. SO GOOD!

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A picture of Spicy Sausage Rigatoni

Spicy Sausage Rigatoni

  • Author: Pinch of Yum
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 810 1x


This Spicy Sausage Rigatoni is so simple and SO GOOD. Chewy tubes of rigatoni swimming in a delicious sauce made of Italian sausage, San Marzano tomatoes, red wine, and spices.


  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 12 cloves garlic, minced
  • half of a yellow onion, minced
  • 2 stalks celery, minced
  • 2 carrots, minced
  • 12 ounces spicy Italian sausage (casings removed – just the ground meat)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 28 ounce can San Marzano tomatoes, including their juices
  • 1/4 cup balsamic or Italian dressing (optional – for some zing!)
  • 1012 ounces rigatoni
  • butter, Parmesan, or basil for topping


  1. Heat the butter in a skillet over medium high heat. Add the garlic, onion, celery, and carrots – sauté for 10 minutes or so, until the vegetables are very soft.
  2. Add the ground sausage, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. When the sausage is fully cooked, add the wine and let it sizzle out.
  3. Add the tomatoes and optional dressing – simmer for 20-30 minutes so the sauce reduces a bit.
  4. Cook the pasta according to package directions. Add the pasta to the sauce and stir gently to combine. It should be saucy but not runny. Transfer to a large serving dish and top with Parmesan and parsley or basil. Serve with more wine!


  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian

Keywords: spicy sausage rigatoni, sausage rigatoni, spicy rigatoni

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      1. Pinch of Yum Logo

        Holy shit! This recipe is a must have for any home cook. I didn’t have red wine so I substituted red wine vinegar and beef bouillon. As well my husband doesn’t like chunky veggies so I also pureed the celery, carrots and onion mixture after sauteing, WOW is all I can say. I truly cant say enough about how incredibly delicious this is. If you really want to show off and make a quick sauce that tastes like it took you all day look no further. Thank you so much for this amazing meal recipe.

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      Lindsay, love your recipes!!

      Can you please advise how I can make the SPICY SAUSAGE RIGATONI several days ahead??

  1. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Aw Sage! She’s adorable. I totally get it… I have an older cat and a kitten. The kitten is a little wildling, bouncing off walls and eating everything in sight – including spiders and leaves dragged in on my shoes. What?! But my older cat is like a proper, polite little old lady. She sniffs things delicately and sometimes I swear I can hear her saying please and thank you… plus the kitten often sits on her head, to her dismay. I think my older cat and Sage might be soul sisters…

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      So funny. I seriously think Sage is part cat – she’s such a snuggler, sometimes I feel like I can almost hear her purring.

  2. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I’m with the parents pup – if there is food, I’m automatically in Drool Mode. And if you add wine to the mix, I will be parked right at the table wagging my imaginary tail. Especially this pasta!!

  3. Pinch of Yum Logo

    The recipe looks great, but don’t you think it is a little misleading to show the nutritional stats for this meal serving TEN. There is no way you could serve this as a meal to 10 people, it would be a few tablespoons per person. Great recipe, but there’s no reason to hide that a pasta dinner is more than 300 calories a serving.

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      Hm, I legitimately got 10 servings out of it (I know because I put it into ten lunch containers for the week). And I definitely don’t eat 2 tablespoons of pasta. 🙂

    2. Pinch of Yum Logo

      I made this for a hungry crowd of 8 over the holidays. Everyone had a hearty portion and a few of us polished it off. I’d say 10 servings is totally accurate!

  4. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Haha – Sage sounds like a hoot and a holler! My younger dog will eat anything – even cardboard, but my older dog is picky – no pineapple, no blackberries, carrots – only if they are cut right! Doggie Food Snob is what we call her!
    Btw – How much of this crazy delish rigatoni did she sneak? 🙂

  5. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I laughed so hard, Lindsay, with your description of your parents’ dogs! I have an old 11-year-old Cavi myself, and she is exactly like that! -> “…basically just two old dog-men who do whatever they want and sleep wherever they want and basically live for the singular goal of naps and hoarding treats.” And that picture of Sage was so funny; thanks for sharing!!

  6. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Weirdly, I am just drinking a (rather early) glass of Barefoot Merlot. How coincidental is that?!! It was on special recently at my local Waitrose supermarket, in London, and I have totally fallen for it so bought 6 bottles. It’s so smooth and easy to drink!

    I am a massive foodie (see my blog, Flair Fairy, on my website http://www.angelabuntcreative.com) which contains my favourite recipes. I am a Kiwi but I lived in Italy for 10 years (2 years in Sicily and 8 in Piemonte). This recipe resonates with my Sicilian years (my ex husband is Sicilian) – tomato, garlic, basil based with delicious Sicilian sausage with fennel seeds. Rigatoni is one of my favourite pastas as I like large pasta and a sauce that is not too wet.

    Thank you for sharing this recipe; it made me nostalgic for those years I spent in Sicily where my older son was born and I have some of my best memories.

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      I should have added some fennel seeds here! Love that! And I fell in love with Waitrose products when we were in the Philippines, oddly enough… it was my favorite brand at our local grocery store. 🙂 So glad you love Barefoot, too!

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I have a thing for spicy pasta! This one looks incredible. Pinning!

  8. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Bah ha ha! “I wish your bum wasn’t on my head, King Charles, but I can’t seem to care enough to move.” Bless her heart.

    Also, I love, and I mean LOVE really thick meat sauce on noodles. I’m saving this recipe. Thanks!