Pasta Puttanesca

Pasta Puttanesca Recipe

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Barbara Jones


This recipe is easily doubled. Start boiling your water as soon as you start cooking this sauce.
"Puttana" means "Lady of the Evening" in Italian. Supposedly the lady cooked this easy meal while she entertained her clients.


★★★★★ 1 vote

15 Min
25 Min
Stove Top


  • 3 Tbsp
    olive oil
  • 1 large
    onion, chopped 3/4 in
  • 1 large
    bell pepper (can use any color)
  • 2 large
    garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 can(s)
    28 ounce crushed italian tomatoes
  • 1/2 c
    black olives, rough chopped
  • 1/2 c
    green olives w/piemento
  • 1 Tbsp
    capers, to taste (dh dislikes so i omit)
  • 2 Tbsp
    basil, fresh or
  • 3 Tbsp
    basil, dried
  • 1 tsp
    red pepper flakes
  • 1 pinch
    black pepper,
  • 16 oz
  • 1 tsp
    oregano, dried
  • 1/4 c
    parmesan cheese or romano cheese

How to Make Pasta Puttanesca


  1. In a large heavy skillet, heat the oil until hot and fragrant. Add onions and turn down to medium. Add fresh peppers and saute for another 5-7 min.
  2. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds longer. Do NOT brown garlic.
  3. Add dried herbs. Immediately pour in can of crushed tomatoes. Bring to a gentle boil.
  4. Stir in the olives. Simmer for an additional 20 minutes
  5. While the sauce is cooking, prepare pasta according to package directions. Use a nice heavy pasta, at least linguine.
  6. Drain pasta, add sauce, and pass grated Parmesan or Romano cheese.

Printable Recipe Card

About Pasta Puttanesca

Course/Dish: Pasta
Main Ingredient: Vegetable
Regional Style: Mediterranean
Dietary Needs: Vegetarian
Other Tags: Quick & Easy, Healthy

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