BrokeAss Gourmet

BrokeAss Gourmet

Pasta Arrabiata with Goat Cheese

  • Prep Time 0:05
  • Cook Time 0:25
  • Estimated Cost $9

Pasta is not supposed to be complicated. I get so cranky when I see 40-step pasta recipes with 37 ingredients, all requiring elaborate prep. To me, pasta is all about getting a hot, tasty meal onto the table and into tummies as quickly and enjoyably as possible.

Enter this outstanding arrabiata recipe. Arrabiata’s name comes from the Italian word “arrabiato,” which means “angry,” a nod to this sauce’s fiery heat. Simple crushed chilies, (available inexpensively in the spice aisle or for free when you order pizza) get toasted in extra virgin olive oil and release their own oils, creating a hot and deeply flavorful sauce, along with garlic, onions and tomatoes. The cool, creamy goat cheese works like a raita alongside a hot Indian curry, cooling the palate with each spicy bite.

I love to make this dish with fire-roasted canned tomatoes (see note in ingredients list), since their smoky, charred flavor complements this sauce’s spiciness so nicely. This sauce also works very well over nutty whole wheat pasta (like the bucatini pictured).


  1. 6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil Pantry
  2. 3/4 tbsp (more/less to taste) crushed red chilies $1.50 for 1 oz.
  3. 3 cloves garlic, chopped Pantry
  4. 1/2 onion (red, yellow or white), chopped finely $0.50 for a whole onion
  5. 1 (15-oz) can diced, tomatoes (I prefer the fire-roasted kind from Muir Glen) $2
  6. salt and pepper to taste Pantry 
  7. 8 oz. bucatini, spaghetti, fettucini or other sturdy strand pasta, cooked according to package directions and drained $2
  8. 4 oz. crumbled goat cheese $3 

Recipe Serves 4


  1. Heat the oil in a large heavy-bottomed frying pan or pot over medium heat.
  2. Add the chilies and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the chopped garlic and onions and cook for another 4-5 minutes, until soft.
  4. Add the tomatoes, stir well and cover. 
  5. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, covered for 18-22 minutes, stirring once or twice. 
  6. Taste the sauce for salt and season with salt and pepper as desired.
  7. Toss the pasta with the sauce until each strand is well-coated. Season with more salt and pepper if needed.
  8. Serve the pasta hot, on plates or in bowls, topped with a scattering of fresh goat cheese.

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What They're Saying

Daniel, on Sep 6, 12:11 PM, wrote:

Looks good to me! I think this would be great with roasted bell peppers, too. I just recently purchased a dozen fresh peppers for $5 at a farmer’s market, and after roasting them quickly under the broiler or on a gas range, I think they could be delicious in something like this. (And affordable!) They’d go great with the goat cheese, too.

The Girl Who Cried Skinny, on Sep 10, 02:47 PM, wrote:

Yes! Why are they always so complicated and involved? It’s funny because I’m not even opposed to complicated or involved recipes. I sort of view them as moral challenges … but you said it perfectly. Pasta should be about 10 minutes of boiling and eating shortly thereafter. Glad you posted this!

Maddy, on Nov 2, 07:31 AM, wrote:

I’m a bit late to the party on this, but I wanted to say I LOVE this recipe! Fire-roasted tomatoes are a great idea. This pasta is easy and delicious. Have made it many times. Thank you!

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