I love Italians…they really know how to make magical meals out of simple ingredients like tomatoes, garlic, pasta and a few herbs/spices.

There used to be this Italian restaurant I would go to with my college boyfriend, where you could custom order your own pasta dish.  You’d pick the pasta type, the sauce and then three toppings.  I would always order penne pasta with arrabbiata sauce, artichoke hearts, asparagus and toasted pine nuts.  It was divine! This was also my first introduction to spicy red sauce and boy was I hooked.  Plain marinara could never again compare!

Arrabbiata sauce, or sugo all’arrabbiata in Italian, is a simple spicy sauce made from garlic, tomatoes, and red chili peppers cooked in olive oil. “Arrabbiata” literally means “angry” in Italian.  The name of the sauce may well be due to the heat of the chili pepper and one’s reaction to it.

As you can probably tell from my recipe posts, I have a BIG love for spicy foods. So if you can’t take the heat, get out of my kitchen!  Just kidding  But seriously, this sauce is absolutely amazing!


  • 12oz penne pasta
  • 1½ cups marinara sauce
  • 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • ½ tsp hot red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes


  1. In a large pot of salted water, cook penne according to package instructions.
  2. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Add chickpeas and hot red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add marinara sauce and sun-dried tomatoes and cook until sauce is heated through.
  3. Drain pasta; toss with chickpea sauce to coat.
EntreesAlicia Uhl