Spicy Sausage Rigatoni

Spicy Sausage Rigatoni in a bowl with bread.


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!

A picture of Spicy Sausage Rigatoni

Spicy Sausage Rigatoni


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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