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Easy Spaghetti Arrabiata

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A quick and simple homemade spaghetti arrabiata that uses fresh garlic and canned tomatoes to create a savory, spicy pasta dinner!

Pasta is always something Kim and I can agree on. Whether it’s a creamy kielbasa pasta, ricotta spinach stuffed shells, or Mexican spaghetti. We adore pasta.

In fact, we eat it at least one a week. For today’s post, we’re sharing Kim’s spicy spaghetti arrabiata.

Garlic and red pepper flakes, sauteed in olive oil and simmered with crushed tomatoes. It’s the perfect sauce to wake up your taste buds!

A pasta bowl loaded with fresh spaghetti arrabiata.
Top this tasty pasta with shaved Parmesan cheese and fresh basil!

As always, I’ve included some tips at the end of the post. It’s such a simple recipe, you shouldn’t run into any issues.

With that being said, I try to make sure our posts are actually helpful and not loaded with a lot of filler.

Oh, one last thing, this recipe only uses two pans, so you won’t have much clean-up. So, shall we get started?

Aerial view of the pasta topped with shaved parmesan.
If you don’t like spaghetti noodles, then you can use any type of pasta you want.

How do you make arrabiata sauce from scratch?

First, grab a medium sized saucepan and place it over low-medium heat.

Next, when the pan has warmed up, pour in the olive oil and crushed red pepper flakes.

Let the oil and pepper flakes cook for about 1-minute. After that, add in the minced garlic.

Oil and red pepper flakes cooking in a saucepan.
You can make the dish as spicy as you want by adding extra red pepper flakes.

Allow the mixture to cook for another 30 seconds. Then, pour in the crushed tomatoes, sugar, salt, and black pepper.

Now, stir everything together and bring the sauce to a simmer. Cover it and let it cook for about 25-minutes.

Crush tomatoes and other ingredients added to the saucepan.
I recommend making the noodles while sauce cooks down.

Meanwhile, as the sauce cooks down, prepare the spaghetti noodles per the box instructions. Drain them and set them aside.

Last, when sauce has cooked, do a taste test and add more spices if needed. Turn off the heat and toss the noodles with the sauce.

That’s it, your spaghetti arrabiata recipe is done! Kim and I hope you enjoy it and wish you all the best 🙂

The cooked noodles tossed with the sauce.
Once everything has cooked, simply toss the noodles and the sauce together.

What does arrabiata mean?

When directly translated from Italian to English, arrabiata means, “angry.” So, it should come as no surprise that arrabiata sauce has a spicy kick.

Recipe Tips:

  • You can easily determine how spicy you want the dish in a number of ways. Decreasing the amounts of garlic and crushed red pepper flakes will reduce the heat. Additionally, slightly increasing the sugar or a pinch of baking soda also help to balance the spice.
  • For a fiery spaghetti arrabiata, increase the amounts of garlic and pepper flakes. Also, don’t forget to decrease the sugar.
  • We chose spaghetti noodles; however, feel free to use any dry pasta you want. Just keep in mind that certain pastas are better at, “soaking up,” the sauce.
  • If you’d like to add chicken to the pasta, try this Chicken Penne Arrabiata recipe. It looks amazing!
An up-close view of the finished pasta.
Serve this pasta dish with garlic knots or cheesy bread for a filling dinner.

Don’t forget to check out our Spaghetti Arrabiata web story!

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An up-close view of the finished pasta.

Spaghetti Arrabiata

Yield: 12 Ounces
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

A quick and simple homemade spaghetti arrabiata that uses fresh garlic and canned tomatoes to create a savory, spicy pasta dinner!


  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 - 2 Teaspoons Red Pepper Flakes, adjust to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon Garlic, Minced or pressed
  • 1 (28 Ounce) Can Crushed Tomatoes, San Marzano Tomatoes if available
  • 1 Teaspoon Granulated Sugar, optional (see tips)
  • 8 Ounces Dry Spaghetti noodles (cooked per the box instructions)
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste


Heat a medium saucepan over low-medium heat. When the saucepan is hot, add the olive oil and crushed red pepper flakes. Cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute, then add the garlic. Cook for an additional 30 seconds.

Add the crushed tomatoes, sugar, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine, and bring to a simmer. Cover, and cook at a low simmer for 20 to 30 minutes while stirring occasionally.

While the sauce is simmering, cook 8 ounces of spaghetti according to package directions, drain, and set aside.

After the sauce cooks, taste and add more salt if necessary. Add the noodles to the sauce, and toss to coat.

Garnish with fresh basil and Parmesan cheese.


The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients in the recipe card and a serving size of about 2-3 ounces of the spaghetti arrabiata. Additionally, the calorie count does NOT include the Parmesan cheese and fresh basil garnishes seen in the photos. Actual calories will vary.

For more information and tips, please refer to the post.

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As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 3 Ounces
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 140Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 135mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 2gSugar: 4gProtein: 4g

*The calories are an estimate and are based on the ingredients and serving size listed. The calories can vary depending on the brand of product purchased.

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