Authentic Italian Pasta with Calamari Sauce

Bring a taste of  Italy to your table with this mouthwatering and tasty, quick and easy-to-make pasta with calamari and tomato sauce 

Here is a popular must-try Neapolitan primo piatto. A simple and simply delicious pasta tossed with a spicy, garlicky, and oh-so flavorful calamari (squid) and cherry tomatoes sauce.

It’s a classic Italian one-dish entree that is elegant enough for a fancy dinner for your guests or date night. But it’s also simple and fast to make any family weeknight dinner special. 

You know by now how much I love squid. It’s easy-to-find at the grocery store or fish market any time of the year, and it’s relatively  inexpensive. It has a sweet and versatile taste, and it cooks in no time! Calamari is great by itself in your favorite sauce for pasta or risotto, and pairs extremely well with other seafood (shrimp, clams, mussels, …).

This classic Italian dish is generally served with “calamarata” pasta, which look really similar to the paccheri that you see here. It’s wider and shorter than paccheri, so it looks a lot like squid rings. When you toss the two together it’s hard to tell the calamari from the pasta. 

I couldn’t find calamarata pasta here (not as common as in Italy) but these paccheri taste just as delicious. 

For this recipe, all you need to do is clean the squid, cut the tubes into rings. In a large pan or skillet, saute’ the garlic with the peperoncino (extra spicy Italian tiny dry pepper) in a little extra virgin olive oil, just like you would do for the classic “aglio, olio, peperoncino”. 

After a minute add the calamari and toss with white wine.  Add the cherry tomatoes cut in half and a bit of tomato paste for a more saucy result. Salt and pepper to taste. 

All these steps can be done while the water gets boiling and the pasta is cooking. When the pasta is cooked al dente, toss in the skillet with your seafood sauce. Let the pasta and sauce flavor mingle in the pan for one minute or two. Toss with lots of fresh Italian parsley and serve. As simple as that. 

Buon appetito!

Other Italian Recipe you might like:

Traditional Risotto with Calamari (Squid)

Step-by-step Authentic Seafood Risotto

Risotto with Shrimp and Asparagus

Easy-to-make Seafood Paella

Risotto with Smoked Salmon and Zucchini


Authentic Italian Pasta with Calamari Sauce

Authentic Italian Pasta with Calamari Sauce
Yield: 4

Author: Manuela Mazzocco

Prep time: 10 MinCook time: 15 MinTotal time: 25 Min

Bring a taste of Italy to your table with this mouthwatering and rich, quick and easy-to-make pasta with calamari and tomato sauce


  • 12 oz (340 gr) paccheri or calamarata pasta
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed or minced
  • 1 peperonicino (Italian dry hot pepper)
  • 1 lb. (450 gr) squid, tentacles and tubes – cleaned and cut into rings
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) dry white wine
  • 1 lb (450 gr) cherry tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • Fresh parsley, minced
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. When boiling reduce to medium-high and cook the pasta as directed on the box.
  2. In the meantime, in a large skillet saute’ the garlic and peperonicno in the olive oil.
  3. Add the squid, rings and tentacles into the pan. Cook over medium-high for a couple of minutes.
  4. Drizzle with the white wine and let evaporate for one minute.
  5. Add the cherry tomatoes cut in half, the tomato paste and a spoonful of chopped fresh parsley.
  6. Season with salt and pepper and let simmer for about 5 minutes.
  7. When the pasta is ready al dente, add to the sauce, toss and let simmer for two more minutes (mantecare). Serve with more parsley and black pepper. Enjoy!
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