Red Wine Spaghetti*

Growing up we had spaghetti at least twice a week. It was always the same pasta, the same red jarred sauce, and ground meat. I hated it. It wasn’t that I hated spaghetti, it was more that I hated the repetition. It got so bad that my Mom would just expect me to eat cereal instead…it wasn’t even a question. My family however, loved it. Now that the years have gone by, I can eat spaghetti. And sometimes I even enjoy it, but I only have it maybe once every 3 months.

So when I saw this recipe for Red Wine Spaghetti, I knew I really wanted to try it. In spite of all the differences, I still couldn’t shake the thought of my childhood spaghetti. So this recipe sat…and sat…and sat. I would look at it often and then go on to find something else for dinner. Last week I found myself staring at 2 half full bottles of red wine. I was leaving the next day to go out of town and the wine would go bad before I got home.

I was facing a decision. Throw the wine out, drink it all by myself, or use it to make the spaghetti. Throwing it out would be a crying shame. Drinking it all by myself could result in some serious wine induced phone calls to Jorge who was away on business. And spaghetti…was still…spaghetti. So I started drinking, hey — what else is a girl to do?? By the time I finished my second glass, Red Wine Spaghetti sounded like a fabulous idea. I could eat and drink red wine at the same time.

Absolutely brilliant.

While my wine induced photos may not be able to show it, this Red Wine Spaghetti was delicious! And thankfully nothing like the spaghetti we are all used to. While it may be short on ingredients, the pasta has a deep, full flavor that goes perfectly with the walnuts and parmesan. While traditional spaghetti may not be on my weekly menu, this Red Wine Spaghetti has found a new home.


Red Wine Spaghetti

Yield: 4 servings

Total Time: 20 minutes

A delicious way to dress up every day pasta, but fast enough for a week night meal!


4 1/4 cups dry red wine
3 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
13.25 oz whole wheat spaghetti
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 small garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 cup walnuts (4 ounces), toasted and coarsely chopped
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for serving
Freshly ground black pepper


In a large pot, combine 4 cups red wine, water and salt. Bring to a boil. Add spaghetti and cook, till al dente, according to instructions on box. Drain pasta, reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid.

In a deep skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add the garlic and red pepper. Cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the remaining 1/4 cup red wine and reserved cooking liquid. Bring to a simmer.

Carefully stir in the pasta, and cook until liquid has absorbed, about 2 minutes. Add the parsley, nuts, the 1/2 cup of cheese and the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and toss. Season the pasta with salt & pepper and serve, passing grated cheese at the table.

Adapted from Food & Wine

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54 Responses to “Red Wine Spaghetti”

  1. 1

    Diane {Created by Diane} — October 10, 2011 @ 11:31 pm

    looks wonderful, I’m a true pasta girl… :) love it and can eat it everyday and never tire of the variety of sauces to put on it.

  2. 2

    Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga — October 10, 2011 @ 11:48 pm

    That looks great! Red wine makes anything better :)

    And loved your Nashville recap. Wish I could have gone and met you and all the awesome ppl there!

  3. 3

    Lauren — October 11, 2011 @ 12:09 am

    Bring on the carbs! Love this idea! {Also, loved meeting you and getting to know you this weekend! xoxo}

  4. 4

    foodie @ tastingspot — October 11, 2011 @ 12:31 am

    i like your pictures and would like to invite your to share them on

  5. 5

    Dionne Baldwin — October 11, 2011 @ 1:26 am

    Never heard of red wine spaghetti but red wine hasn’t steered me wrong yet! But seriously, I love the flavor of wine in cooking. It adds a richness and depth.

    I’m sorry about your spaghetti aversion! I must make up for it since that wasn’t our go to meal. Ours was that sausage in a loop, cut up and pan fried. SICK! (Not in a good way.) I still cannot eat that or breakfast sausage links to this day.

    P. S. The walnuts sound like a nice touch to this dish!

  6. 6

    Jessica Lynn — October 11, 2011 @ 3:35 am

    I’ve had a red wine spaghetti recipe sitting in my folder, too. I just love sauce so much that I haven’t had the guts to try this. Maybe I will now that we can get wine for ridiculously cheap. Thanks for the motivation :)

  7. 7

    Kristen — October 11, 2011 @ 7:23 am

    What an interesting, but beautiful recipe! Bookmarking to try very very soon!

  8. 8

    Winnie — October 11, 2011 @ 7:40 am

    I’ve yet to try this method, but I am completely intrigued…it sounds really good. Your photos are drop dead gorgeous, too!

  9. 9

    JulieD — October 11, 2011 @ 8:21 am

    I agree with Winnie…beautiful! I want to try this now! Pinned it for later. :)

  10. 10

    raquel from Florida — October 11, 2011 @ 9:13 am

    wow!!! What a recipe! Sooo easy and yet beautiful. You know what? I’ll try this recipe for halloween, it is so dark that it will look great in the table. Thanks! ahhh and no, I have not tried the cauliflower soup ( I will stop by publix to buy the hated vegetable)

  11. 11

    Katrina @ In Katrina's Kitchen — October 11, 2011 @ 9:57 am

    This is so cool! I have to share it with some friends! It is so so pretty too!

  12. 12

    Bev Weidner — October 11, 2011 @ 10:22 am


  13. 13

    The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh — October 11, 2011 @ 11:27 am

    Well look at you Ms. Fancy Pants!

  14. 14

    Tessa — October 11, 2011 @ 11:37 am

    World Market napkin sisters! 😉 Never heard of red wine pasta – it’s gorgeous!

  15. 15

    Julia — October 11, 2011 @ 11:48 am

    I think I have the same issues with spaghetti that you do. It’s one of my favorite foods, but I can’t help but remember how bland and boring the 3 ingredient dish was we had far too often growing up. Now this, THIS is something I can get behind.

  16. 16

    Jeanette — October 11, 2011 @ 11:52 am

    I love how simple and beautiful this pasta dish is!

  17. 17

    Gina @ SPCookieQueen — October 11, 2011 @ 11:58 am

    Hi Jessica,
    So glad to have found your beautiful site. You and my brother shared the same aversion, only his choice was a salami sandwich. I love red wine anything, your photos are just beautiful.

  18. 18

    Alison @ Ingredients, inc. — October 11, 2011 @ 12:05 pm

    This looks fabulous! So glad to meet you this past weekend!!

  19. 19

    Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking — October 11, 2011 @ 12:53 pm

    This looks really delicious and different than anything I’ve ever tried. Thanks for sharing your recipe and inspiring me to try something new, Jessica! Printing it now!

  20. 20

    Joanne — October 11, 2011 @ 2:15 pm

    I always seem to be afflicted by the extra red wine problem (is that really a problem? Hmm.). Definitely need to try this!

  21. 21

    Nicole, RD — October 11, 2011 @ 2:36 pm

    This I am new to. This I must try. MUST.!

  22. 22

    Cassie l Bake Your Day — October 11, 2011 @ 2:48 pm

    This is a brilliant recipe. I made it a few months ago and I was hooked. Delicious! I love the color too. PS – great meeting you this weekend!!

  23. 23

    see you in the morning — October 11, 2011 @ 3:10 pm

    how marvelous

  24. 24

    Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen — October 11, 2011 @ 3:23 pm

    What a gorgeous deep red color, I have to try this!

  25. 25

    Cookin' Canuck — October 11, 2011 @ 3:25 pm

    What a beautiful color! This is definitely one to try – for taste and for a great presentation.

  26. 26

    Lauren at Keep It Sweet — October 11, 2011 @ 7:29 pm

    I love this and the color is gorgeous! What time should I come over?

  27. 27

    Debi at Life Currents — October 11, 2011 @ 7:39 pm

    Wow! that’s so funny, I just posted about spaghetti cooked in red wine as well. It’s something I had heard was an Italian tradition. I made mine with roasted cauliflower and broccoli. So yummy! I guess great minds think alike. 😉

  28. 28

    Emma — October 11, 2011 @ 8:14 pm

    I’ve never heard of red wine spaghetti but it intrigues me – I love simple, flavourful pasta dishes like this.

  29. 29

    Katrina — October 11, 2011 @ 9:30 pm

    Weird! a good way. This sounds lovely.

  30. 30

    Beth — October 11, 2011 @ 10:02 pm

    I love the red noodles! And the short ingredients list—long lists always scare me.

  31. 31

    Kathy - Panini Happy — October 11, 2011 @ 11:22 pm

    This sounds pretty awesome to me! :-)

  32. 32

    Jen at The Three Little Piglets — October 11, 2011 @ 11:48 pm

    I love the way you think! Drink it and cook with it…

  33. 33

    naomi — October 12, 2011 @ 3:01 am

    I am FASCINATED with this pasta dish! Wow. I love the flavor and color pop from the wine. MUST make for sure.

  34. 34

    Susan — October 12, 2011 @ 5:40 am

    This looks delicious! My Irish mother didn’t feed me a lot of pasta growing up (she thought it was weird when I’d tell her I was having it twice in a row for dinner in college). Because of that I am know obsessed with it, but I’m always looking for ways to mix it up.

  35. 35

    Chef Dennis — October 12, 2011 @ 11:18 am

    I love pasta and I am amazed, I have to try this right away,it looks and sounds delicious!

  36. 36

    Eliana — October 12, 2011 @ 11:37 am

    This spaghetti looks too good to pass up on.

  37. 37

    Madi @ Sit Down and Eat Your Peas! — October 12, 2011 @ 1:26 pm

    Oooo I’m always looking for something I can make with pantry ingredients…and lets be honest…wine is an integral component of my pantry!

  38. 38

    Lisa — October 12, 2011 @ 2:56 pm

    Great write-up! LOL@ the three red wine options. Best choice for sure! There’s food I grew up on which took me a long time to like it again (my mother butchered many a great dish – she hated cooking). That said, what a gorgeous, crimson/magenta spaghetti and your photos of it are beautiful!

  39. 39

    Bryna — October 12, 2011 @ 11:49 pm

    Mmm, I had a version of this in Florence once and then have made it on my own (without a recipe) since. I don’t happen to use walnuts, but I think fresh parsley makes a nice addition. So rich and decadent! Perfect in the winter.

  40. 40

    Samantha — October 13, 2011 @ 11:11 am

    This just made it to my “must make list.” your wine induced photos are still fab and makes me want to eat this spaghetti right…now.

  41. 41

    Caitlin — October 13, 2011 @ 12:55 pm

    I’m definitely trying this soon. It looks amazing!

  42. 42

    Cafe Wayan Ubud — October 14, 2011 @ 2:59 am

    That’s one hell of a recipe. It would be nice to add this up to our menu. :)

  43. 43

    Shiraz Boys – our quest for the ultimate Red Wine and beyond » Blog Archive » The Novice Chef » Red Wine Spaghetti — October 14, 2011 @ 5:34 am

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  44. 44

    JavelinWarrior — October 14, 2011 @ 8:34 am

    This post is so fetish-worthy, I’ve been inspired to include it in my Friday Food Fetish blog. If you have any objections, please let me know

  45. 45

    Kelly — October 17, 2011 @ 4:31 pm

    I tried to wish you happy birthday on your new post but for some reason, comments weren’t working on that one so you get a post here instead, where it will make no sense, but oh well. I find it sooo amusing that biscoff spread has just exploded. Do you know if it is the same as speculoos? I saw a FN show where the latter was spread on waffles and remember thinking it sounded amazing.

    I also wanted to say that it is amusing to think about where our younger selves thought we would be by a certain age. I remember when I was a senior in high school we had to write about predictions for ourselves at our grad party. I wish I had a copy as I am sure the content would be amusing now. Life often takes a different path than we expected. In my early twenties I owned a condo and had a very serious boyfriend. Now in my late 20’s I am renting, just starting a budding relationship, and have a dog. Things take different paths than we expect sometimes.

  46. 46

    Magda's Cauldron — October 19, 2011 @ 3:16 pm

    It looks so pretty and simple. Ok, that’s a lot of wine, I will have to wait for a moment when I will have too much wine, I hope it will happen soon

  47. 47

    Camilla — October 21, 2011 @ 11:56 am

    This post made me laugh! I absolutely love spaghetti and would beg mom to make it all the time. Now I am probably ruining ‘sgetti for my daughter the way you describe feeling about the repetition when you were a kid. Oh and drinking and cooking so go hand-in-hand:-) I made some “Drunken Rice” during one of my drink/cook sessions and it turned out great as well.

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    Heather — February 7, 2013 @ 5:30 pm

    Hey Jessica! I featured your oh-so-glorious Red Wine Spaghetti as my 100th blog post! We loved it so and I’ve actually fed it to a number of people with rave reviews! Thank you so much!!!!

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