Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca

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Spaghetti alla Puttanesca, literally means “spaghetti in the style of a prostitute” in Italian. It’s a classic Italian dish originated in the Naples region of Italy. It’s a simple spicy sauce with capers and olives. The traditional recipe calls for anchovies, but of course I skipped that since I’m vegetarian. However, feel free to add said ingredient if you wish.

This recipe is near and dear to my heart! It’s a recreation of this dish I used to get all the time at a restaurant name Scoozi’s in Boston. It is where my husband & I had our first date! I ordered this exact dish, and we fell in love over spaghetti (Lady and the Tramp style HAHA). He hated this place though. He ordered some sandwich and he didn’t like it. So we never went back to that restaurant again, UNTIL the day he proposed!! He took me back there because he knew how much I loved that place and again I ordered Spaghetti A La Puttanesca of course, and the rest is history! When I recreated this dish at home it brought back to many memories and ALL the feels y’all. I hope you will enjoy this as much as we did!

Stay happy, stay hungry!

Prep time: 5 minutesCook time: 15 minutesTotal time: 20 minutesMakes: 4 servings


  • ½ box spaghetti, cooked according to packaged direction (save about a cup of pasta water)
  • 13 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil (good kind)
  • 1 tbsp capers
  • ¼ cup kalamata olives
  • ¼ cup sliced pepperoncini
  • 3 cups San Marzano tomatoes (28 oz. can)
  • 1 tbsp red chili flakes
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Parsley (optional)


  1. In a bowl crush the San Marzano tomatoes with your hands or with a potato masher, set it-aside until its ready to use.

  2. In a large pan add the olive oil and sliced garlic, turn on the heat and cook it for about a minute, then add capers, olives, sliced pepperoncini, and red chili flakes.

    Cook everything for about a minute.

  3. Add the crushed tomatoes, salt, and black pepper. Let the sauce cook for about 2-3 minutes.

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  4. Add the spaghetti directly from pasta pan to the sauce and mix well.

    Add pasta water as needed.

  5. Top it with parsley and serve hot!

  • Use any kinds of olives you wish/ have on hand.
  • You can make this same dish using a different style of pasta if you wish.
  • If you don’t have capers you can skip that. I got the capers from Trader Joes, great pricing compared to other grocery stores.
  • You can also use jalapeños instead of the pepperoncini as well.

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