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Pink Pasta Sauce Recipe

Pink pasta sauce over a bowl of rigatoni garnished with sliced basil and grated parmesan cheese.

What we love about this pink pasta sauce recipe

Don’t we all get bored of making marinara or meat sauce for pasta? This pretty pink sauce recipe is an excellent alternative! It doesn’t take too much time to make this recipe, yet it’s still bursting with flavor.

Using butter, rather than olive oil, and shallots as the base makes all the difference. It lends an extra creaminess that pairs well with the heavy cream and cheeses in the sauce. Though you could substitute onion if you don’t have any shallots on hand, shallots are slightly sweeter and lighter than onion, allowing the creaminess of the sauce to shine through.

The shallots also provide a sharpness that is perfect with the flavors of the tomatoes. Using whole crushed tomatoes delivers a hearty, thick texture, which is made even thicker once the cheeses are melted into the sauce.

A spoon stirring pink pasta sauce in a dutch oven.

Here’s what you’ll need to make it

Close up of a bowl of rigatoni with pink pasta sauce over it.

How to make pink pasta sauce

Sautè garlic and shallots in butter. Melt the butter in a large skillet on medium heat. Add minced garlic and sautè until fragrant, usually about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add minced shallots, dried herbs and salt and continue to cook.

Add heavy cream and melt cheeses. Pour the heavy cream into the pan and bring it to a simmer. You want the cream to be nice and hot when you add the cheeses so they melt nicely.

Stir in tomatoes and simmer. Once the cheeses have melted completely into the cream add the crushed tomatoes. Stir until fully incorporated and allow to simmer for another 5 minutes so the flavors meld together.

Serve over pasta.

Close up of pink pasta sauce on a wooden spoon in a pot.

FAQs and tips on making pink pasta sauce

Why is it called pink sauce?

It is simply named based on the color of the sauce. This sauce is also called rose sauce, vodka sauce (which should have vodka in it), parma rosa sauce, or just creamy tomato sauce. No matter what you call it, it is typically somewhere in between an alfredo and a marinara sauce.

Can you add cream to tomato sauce without curdling?

Yes, the key here is to make sure the cream and cheeses have been thoroughly warmed and melted, then slowly adding the tomatoes allowing them to come up to temperature before adding more.

How do you make a creamy pasta sauce thicker?

If your sauce is not as thick as you would like, you can continue to simmer it, uncovered, until it reaches your desired thickness. The longer you simmer to more liquid can evaporate, allowing the sauce to thicken. This sauce will also thicken a bit when it cools down.

Two bowls of pink sauce pasta garnished with fresh basil and grated cheese.

More delicious pasta recipes you will love

A bowl of pasta with pink sauce garnished with fresh basil.

Pink Pasta Sauce Recipe

Pink pasta sauce is a decadent, meatless sauce. Made with crushed tomatoes, Italian cheeses and heavy cream, this beautiful pink sauce is thick and luscious. Toss it with your favorite pasta for a flavorful meal that’s ready in 15 minutes!

  • Author: Theresa
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 8 1x
  • Category: Sauce
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian


  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¼ cup grated pecorino romano cheese
  • ½ tsp crushed red peppers


  1. In a large skillet, melt butter on medium heat.
  2. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, or about 30 seconds.
  3. Add minced shallot, basil, oregano, crushed red peppers and salt, sauté for another minute.
  4. Add heavy cream and sauté until warmed through.
  5. Add mozzarella and pecorino romano cheeses, simmer until cheese is fully melted into cream.
  6. Slowly stir in crushed tomatoes until well incorporated.
  7. Simmer for another 5 minutes and serve over pasta.


  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 114
  • Sugar: 1.9 g
  • Sodium: 291.8 mg
  • Fat: 8.9 g
  • Saturated Fat: 5.6 g
  • Carbohydrates: 3.7 g
  • Fiber: 0.8 g
  • Protein: 5.5 g
  • Cholesterol: 29 mg

Keywords: pink pasta sauce recipe, pink sauce pasta recipe, pink pasta sauce, rose sauce pasta, how to make pink pasta sauce, pink sauce for pasta

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