Home » Course » Main Course

Creamy Tomato Pasta with Italian Sausage

This 30-minute Creamy Italian Sausage Pasta is an easy dinner recipe perfect for busy weeknights! Chewy rigatoni pasta with Italian sausage tossed in velvety, garlicky creamy tomato sauce along with spinach. Topped with freshly grated parmesan cheese and fresh parsley.

If you want love a hearty pasta dish with sausage and creamy tomato sauce, this Italian Sausage Pasta for you!

A bowl of rigatoni pasta coated in creamy tomato sauce, combined with Italian sausage and spinach

If you love this Italian Sausage Pasta recipe, also check these out! Cherry Tomato Pasta with Chicken, Cheesy Tomato Chicken Spaghetti, and Tomato Basil Gnocchi.

Creamy Italian Sausage Pasta

Here’s why you need to make this creamy Italian sausage pasta recipe!

  • Easy to make – ready under 30 minutes with minimal ingredients. In fact, you probably have most of the items in your pantry already!
  • One-bowl meal – easy to eat and minimal cleanup.
  • A balance meal – you have your carbs, your protein and your veggie all in one bowl!
  • Great for make ahead and reheating – creamy Italian sausage pasta keeps and reheats incredibly well. It actually tastes the same the day after!
  • Perfect for meal prep
  • YUMMY – obviously, it is VERY delicious. If not you won’t see it on this food blog!

This Creamy Italian Sausage Pasta recipe is one of my husband’s favorite meals, and it shows up on our dinner table regularly. We have eaten this so many times and never seem to get tired of it!

Italian sausage is a bold-flavored and delicious crumble meat usually made with seasoned ground pork that has so much amazing flavors. And the best part is, it brings its beautiful flavors into our creamy tomato sauce.

Pro tip: if you want flavor and you want it quick in your dishes, using Italian sausage is a great way to go about it!

In addition to Italian sausage, the sauce in this creamy Italian sausage pasta is made with canned tomatoes and heavy cream, seasoned with Italian inspired seasonings, and tossed with some spinach to add additional texture and much needed veggies into out diet.

With spinach being kinda hidden, even picky veggies eaters will even eat it! It’s a fantastic way to sneak those veggies into their diet!

All that to say, creamy Italian sausage pasta dish is always a win in our household…and I know it will be in yours too!

Closeup view of Creamy Tomato Pasta tossed with Italian sausage, spinach, parmesan and parsley


To make Italian Sausage Pasta, here are notes for some of the key ingredients you will need:

  • Pasta – use any pasta but I like using shorter pasta for this creamy Italian sausage pasta recipe. Other options include penne, ziti, rotini, macaroni etc. I find the shorter pasta holds on to more of the creamy sauce.
  • Italian sausage – these usually come raw and minced, kinda like ground pork but already seasoned. They come in different flavors too, such as spicy Italian sausage. Whatever works – use your favorite!
  • Spinach – fresh or frozen works! If using frozen, bring to a complete defrost and pat dry with paper towel to soak up access moisture. P/S: it’s much easier/quicker to use fresh spinach!
  • Crushed tomatoes – I use canned crushed tomatoes. You can substitute with canned whole tomatoes but make sure to break them up into smaller pieces and cook them down until they are crushed.
  • Sweet onions – yellow or white onions work as well
  • Garlic – fresh garlic makes for the best tasting sauce. Avoid substituting with garlic powder, it just doesn’t taste the same!
  • Heavy cream – sometimes called heavy whipping cream, this is a dairy product with a high fat contain, containing about 36-40% of fat. It can be substituted with milk or half and half, but tomato sauce will be less creamy.
  • Dried basil – fresh basil works even better! But it’s not necessary
  • Dried oregano – similarly, if you can find fresh use them, they always taste the best! But it is not necessary and much easier to use dried herbs if you want to make something quick and pantry-friendly.

How to make Italian Sausage Pasta

Let me show you how easy it is to make this delicious creamy Italian sausage pasta…ready under 30 minutes!

First up: Boil pasta in water in a pot, then use a colander to drain access water.

Cooked rigatoni pasta in round colander
Rigatoni pasta

I like using rigatoni for this because it catches just enough the creamy sauce in its ridges. Not too much, not too little. Just the right amount.

It is a personal choice. So feel free to substitute with penne, ziti, rotini, macaroni, or any of your favorite pasta!

Next. While pasta is boiling, go ahead and start making the sauce for our creamy Italian sausage pasta on a separate skillet.

Because Italian sausage is packed with lots of herbs and spices, it brings so much great flavor to the creamy red sauce.

Creamy tomato sauce with Italian sausage in a large round skillet
Creamy tomato sauce with Italian sausage

We will also be able cream, herbs and spices to the sauce to bring alive this thick velvety sauce.

Bonus: if you let the sauce sit for a day or more, it becomes even more flavorful as the spices from the Italian sausage permeate even more into the sauce. Yum….

One thing is for sure – there’s no lacking in the flavor department when it comes to this Creamy Italian Sausage Pasta!

Lastly. When the sauce and pasta are respectively done, combine everything!

Add pasta to sauce

I also like to add spinach to incorporate veggies into this meal. Makes it more well-rounded, healthy, and even if you don’t like spinach, the sauce and Italian sausage have such prominent flavors you can barely taste the spinach.

A great way to hide veggies for picky eaters.

Other veggies you can add to this: kale, shredded carrots, bell peppers etc.

And hold up, we are not done yet!

Garnish creamy Italian pasta with fresh parmesan cheese and chopped parsley. Fresh parmesan cheese brings incredible flavor to the sauce and gives it that extra hint of saltiness.

Parmesan is non-negotiable in our household, but I won’t hold you to that standard.😉 Just passionately recommend it ❤️.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to prevent pasta from sticking together (while waiting for sauce to cook)?

Toss pasta in olive oil right after draining access water from pasta. Do not rinse pasta in cold water as this will remove the starch on the surface of pasta and makes it harder to coat pasta well with sauce.

Can you freeze Creamy Tomato Sauce?

Yes! Store in airtight container and freeze it for whenever you need it! We do this often and to meal prep it for busy weeks.
I typically don’t freeze pasta and only cook pasta when ready to eat. You can store leftover cooked pasta in the refrigerator though.

How to serve it

Highly recommend pairing Creamy Italian Sausage Pasta with some of my favorite side dishes such as:

Every now and then we even fancy it up by pouring a glass of wine, make a cheese platter as the antipasto, as the Italians would call it, and turn this into fun romantic date night at home.

Creamy Italian sausage pasta is a lovely pasta dish that we have enjoyed thoroughly. And have eaten way more often than we probably should. 😉

This is one for the indulgence, my friends! Enjoy!

DID YOU ENJOY THIS RECIPE? Please comment below and give us a 5-star rating! This will help others find this recipe on Google and Pinterest. We very much appreciate your help! 🤍

More Pasta Recipes

Closeup view of Creamy Tomato Pasta tossed with Italian sausage, spinach, parmesan and parsley

Creamy Tomato Pasta with Italian Sausage

An easy pasta meal that takes only 30 minutes! Creamy, garlicky tomato sauce packed with Italian sausage and tossed with rigatoni and spinach. The ultimate comfort food!
4.78 from 36 votes
Print Pin
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Italian
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 785kcal
Author: MinShien


  • 8 oz rigatoni pasta
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3-4 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tbsp sweet onions diced
  • 1 lbs Italian sausage
  • 28 oz canned crushed tomatoes
  • 3/4 tsp dried basil
  • 3/4 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream more if needed
  • 2 cups spinach
  • a dash black pepper to taste
  • 2-3 tbsp parmesan cheese grated
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley chopped


  • Bring water to boil in a large pot, then add rigatoni pasta. Cook using package instructions. Drain and set aside.
  • While waiting for pasta to boil, heat olive oil in a large skillet under medium heat. Then add garlic, sweet onions and Italian sausage. Break apart Italian sausage into smaller pieces. Saute until Italian sausage is almost cooked.
  • Add crushed tomatoes, dried basil, and dried oregano to sauce. Stir and bring to a boil.
  • Add heavy cream to sauce (see Note 1). Bring to boil and simmer for ~5 minutes. Add spinach and black pepper to taste. Stir to combine.
  • Remove from heat and add rigatoni pasta to sauce. Stir to combine.
  • Garnish with fresh parmesan cheese and parsley.
  • Serve and enjoy!



Note 1: If you like the sauce creamier, add more heavy cream.


Calories: 785kcal | Carbohydrates: 60g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 49g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 115mg | Sodium: 1155mg | Potassium: 1102mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 2229IU | Vitamin C: 27mg | Calcium: 168mg | Iron: 5mg
Did you make this recipe?Take a pic and tag me at @joyous.apron, or hashtag #joyousapron on Instagram!

Similar Posts

4.78 from 36 votes (28 ratings without comment)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    This was very delicious! Loved using rigatoni for a change.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Thank you for trying it!! Glad you enjoyed it!

    2. 5 stars
      Delicious!! Only had thin spaghetti (will use rigatoni next time) but it was a success. The spinach makes this dish and I did add an additional cup along with some chopped yellow pepper. Already went in my permanent recipe book! Was a hit with the family! Thank you!!

    3. Joyous Apron says:

      Wonderful! I love hearing that, Lisa. Thanks for sharing!

  2. 5 stars
    Easy to make and comforting and delicious!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Thank you! Always love hearing that! 🙂

  3. I’m making this recipe for the first time and wondered if I cut open the sausage casing and remove meat or, leave it and cut it in small pieces. Having guests and want to make sure I’m preparing this dish properly. Sounds delicious. Thanks

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      If there is casing around the sausage I would recommend cutting it open and removing the meat! But honestly either way it should work just fine 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    My boyfriend and I make this regularly for our weeknight dinner. So delicious and easy! Thanks for the recipe!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      That’s wonderful! Happy to hear you’ve been enjoying this recipe!

  5. Made this tonight. Easy and delicious. I will be making this again!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      That’s wonderful, Kevin! Glad you enjoyed it!

  6. Michelle Kay says:

    5 stars
    This has been part of my family’s weekly rotation for a few months now! We love it! Thank you for sharing!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      That’s wonderful, Michelle! I love hearing that. Thanks so much for letting me know 🙂

  7. Could I omit the meat? Or do ground beef instead?

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Yes! That would be fine!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      I’m sorry to hear you didn’t love it! Can you tell me more about why it was just okay?

  8. Suncountrygirl says:

    5 stars
    great recipe. made it with a quarter onion and some fresh tomatoes I had on hand.

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Yum! That sounds amazing! Thank you for sharing.

  9. 5 stars
    The simplicity of this recipe had me a bit skeptical, but it was absolutely delish! I did add a pinch of crushed red pepper to give it a little zip but followed the recipe as written otherwise. This is definitely a keeper!

    1. Joyous Apron says:

      Thanks Meg! And thanks for sharing the red pepper flakes add – yum!!