This easy chorizo pasta is made primarily with pantry ingredients and ready in just 30 minutes. Creamy and slightly spicy, it’s an indulgent and hearty dish perfect for busy weeknights!
A quick and convenient pasta dish always makes it onto our weekly dinner list and this is one of our all-time favorites. The easy sauce is made with spicy spanish chorizo, a can of fire roasted tomatoes, smoked paprika and a splash of cream to balance it all out. Add an optional sprinkle of parmesan for good measure and enjoy!
all about chorizo
This recipe calls for Spanish chorizo, which is generally fully cooked or semi-cured. Make sure to avoid Mexican chorizo, which is a seasoned and ground raw sausage.
Spanish chorizo is made with chopped pork and seasoned with paprika (where it gets its red color) and other spices. The flavor of chorizo can range from sweet and mild to quite spicy depending on the paprika used. While we tend to opt for a spicy chorizo for this recipe, any other type would work just as well.
Most Spanish-style chorizos can be eaten as-is without cooking, but in this recipe we crisp the chorizo slices up a bit to add extra flavor and texture to the sauce.
ingredients and substitutions
- Pasta: We opted for sauce-hugging rigatoni pasta for this recipe. Other tubular pastas, such as penne or paccheri, would also work well.
- Olive oil: Add just a spoonful to the pan to help crisp up the chorizo.
- Spanish chorizo: Can’t find chorizo? Any type of sliced sausage will work well in this recipe. I would recommend something slightly spicy, such as andouille sausage.
- Fire roasted tomatoes: A can of fire roasted tomatoes is the secret pantry ingredient that gives this dish an incredible depth of flavor. If substituting regular canned tomatoes, we recommend adding a bit more smoked paprika or sauteing diced onion and garlic before making the sauce.
- Smoked paprika: Smoked spanish paprika adds a bit of extra flavor. We like to use a hot smoked paprika, but a sweet smoked paprika would also go well in this sauce.
- Heavy cream: A bit of heavy cream balances the acidity of the tomatoes and cuts through the heat of the chorizo. Half and half can also be used.
- Parmesan: Grated parmesan is an optional addition for a delicious flavor boost.
make it your own!
Looking to make this dish into an entire meal? You can add some vegetables right to the pot! Baby spinach and kale are an easy addition and can be thrown in towards the end of the process — just cook until wilted. Sauteed bell peppers would also go well as part of the sauce.
making the pasta
This simple pasta can be made in three easy steps:
- Cook the pasta in a pot of salted boiling water until al dente.
- Crisp up the chorizo in a skillet with olive oil. Set aside.
- Add the fire roasted tomatoes, smoked paprika, and heavy cream to the skillet. Cook for 5 minutes and toss with the pasta and chorizo.
chorizo pasta: FAQs
Any tubular ridged pasta will work well for this sauce. We tend to go with rigatoni or penne.
This recipe calls for Spanish chorizo (as opposed to Mexican chorizo, which is a highly-seasoned and ground raw sausage). Spanish chorizo is a sliceable sausage that is seasoned with paprika and other spices. It is generally fully cooked or semi-cured.
If you can’t find fire roasted tomatoes you can substitute a can of diced or crushed tomatoes. To get that additional depth of flavor you can add extra smoked paprika to your sauce or saute diced onions and garlic as part of the dish.
For more easy weeknight dinner inspiration, make sure to check out these recipes!
- chickpea and lentil curry
- homemade runzas
- cast iron pizza (on the grill or in the oven) and easy poolish pizza dough
- spicy salmon cakes + cilantro lime aioli
- lemon arugula pasta + parmesan crusted chicken
- chicken sheet pan dinner with beets and carrots + herby yogurt sauce
- seared sablefish with arugula and fennel + brown butter dijon dressing
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