Creamy Italian sausage pasta is easy to make and super delicious. It's made with spicy or mild (your choice!) Italian sausage cooked in a creamy tomato sauce. You'll love it!

Serve this Italian sausage pasta with a green salad tossed in our lemon salad dressing and a side of no yeast bread.

Creamy Italian sausage pasta in a white bowl.

Italian sausage pasta

This easy dinner recipe is sure to become your family's favorite. The creamy tomato sauce has tons of flavor thanks to Italian sausages, a little white wine, and some tomato paste that gets sweet and caramelized when it's cooked.

And even though it's a real treat to eat, it's super fast and easy to make. In just 25 minutes, you can sit at the table (or stand at the stovetop) and dig into this creamy Italian sausage pasta for dinner.

How to make this Italian sausage pasta recipe

This is a wonderfully simple recipe that is perfect for a weeknight dinner. Here's how to make it:

  1. Start by cooking the Italian sausage, onion, and garlic.
  2. Then add tomato paste and white wine or stock to the pan.
  3. Now add the canned tomatoes and cream cheese and season the sauce with salt and pepper.
  4. All that is left is to add the cooked pasta and spinach to the pan and dinner is ready!

Full recipe instructions in the recipe card below.

Italian sausage pasta in a skillet.

How to cook Italian sausage for pasta

We like to remove the casing (the wrapper) from the sausage then use a wooden spoon to break it apart as it cooks. When cooked this way you can easily control how big or small you want the pieces to be. Break them up a little and you'll have big chunks; break them up a lot and you'll have a texture similar to ground beef.

But it is also delicious sliced into chunks either before or after you cook it. Slicing the sausage before cooking it will give you bigger pieces. If you cook the whole sausage first then you'll be able to slice it into thin pieces.

Variations to try

We love the recipe exactly as written, but it's also fun to play around with. Here are a few add-ins you can try:

  • Olives
  • Capers
  • Sautéed bell peppers
  • Kale instead of spinach
  • Cooked mushrooms
  • Basil
A close up of Italian sausage pasta in a pot.

What to serve with Italian sausage pasta

This recipe is easily a meal by itself. But if you'd like to add a side dish, a salad is a great option. Here are a few we like:

Or serve Italian sausage pasta as a side to one of these mains

Recipes using Italian sausage

Creamy Italian sausage pasta in a white bowl with a fork.
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Creamy Italian sausage pasta in a white bowl.

Italian Sausage Pasta

  • Author: Kristen Stevens
  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian

Description

Creamy Italian sausage pasta is easy to make and super delicious. It's made with spicy or mild (your choice!) Italian sausage cooked in a creamy tomato sauce.

If you love this recipe as much as we do, let us know with a 5-star review in the comments!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces penne (or other short pasta. gluten-free, if needed)
  • 2 Italian sausages, casings removed (mild or spicy, your choice)
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • ½ cup white wine or chicken stock
  • 1 14-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 4 ounces cream cheese (can be light)
  • ½ teaspoon EACH: salt and pepper (more to taste)
  • 3 ounces baby spinach
  • Grated parmesan, to serve

Instructions

  1. Cook the penne in a large pot of salted water according to the package directions. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking water then drain the pot. 
  2. Add the sausage, onion, and garlic to a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook, crumbling the sausages with a spoon, until the sausages are cooked, about 6-7 minutes. 
  3. Add the tomato paste to the pan and stir it into the sausages. Let it caramelize for 2-3 minutes then add the wine or stock to deglaze the pan, scraping the bottom to release any flavorful bits that are stuck on. 
  4. Add the crushed tomatoes and cream cheese and simmer the sauce, stirring a few times, until the cream cheese has melted. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 
  5. Add the cooked penne and spinach and stir them into the sauce. Add a little of the reserved cooking water to loosen the sauce, if needed. 

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Creamy Italian sausage pasta in a white bowl with the recipe title on top of the picture.