Pasta with Tomato Chorizo and Mascarpone Sauce

This recipe is on high rotation in our house so I thought it deserved a post. It’s so tasty and we both love it. I’ve said before I like tomato sauces with pasta, himself likes creamy sauces. I love this very simple Tomato Sauce with Butter but himself wanted something with more body. So this recipe is the perfect compromise dish. 

It’s very simple and while it takes a bit of time for the sauce to cook, there’s very little actual work to it. I make a big pot of the sauce and freeze the leftovers. When re-heating just do it very gently so that the sauce doesn’t split.


Useful tips & links:

  • There is a big punch of flavour from the chorizo, it’s a great ingredient to lift a dish. Alternatively you can use nduja like in this Nduja Mascarpone and Lemon Pasta. 
  • If you want to keep it meat free leave out the chorizo. Replace the flavours by adding crushed garlic when the onion is added and add more smoked paprika and a little chipotle chilli paste to give layers of spicy flavours.
  • The recipe is very adaptable and I have used the sauce with gnocchi and in a baked pasta dish. The image below shows baked pasta with added mozzarella.
  • It is not too unlike Penne Alla Vodka and I love this Cherry Tomato Pasta Alla Vodka from Half Baked Harvest.
  • Another tasty pasta dish using chorizo is this Chorizo and Mushroom Pasta.








Pasta with Tomato Chorizo and Mascarpone Sauce


Serves 4 – 6


  • 100g of cooking chorizo sliced
  • 30g of butter
  • 1 onion, peeled and halved
  • 600g of tinned chopped tomatoes or passata or a mixture of the 2
  • Salt and pepper
  • A pinch of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon of smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
  • 100g of mascarpone cheese
  • A small bunch of fresh basil leaves
  • Freshly grated parmesan


  • Heat a large saute pan or casserole dish over a medium heat and add the sliced chorizo. Fry until the chorizo is cooked and releases it’s orange oil.
  • Remove the cooked chorizo from the pan and set aside. Leave the oil in the pan.
  • Place the two halves of the onion in the pan with the cut side down in the oil.
  • Add the butter and melt and mix with the chorizo oil.
  • Pour in the tomatoes, season with salt and pepper, add a pinch of sugar and the oregano and paprika. Finally add the balsamic vinegar and stir through.
  • Bring the sauce to a simmer, cover and allow it to cook over a low heat for 30 minutes. Check a couple of times and give it a stir to make sure it is not sticking or drying out.
  • After the 30 minutes, remove the onion halves and add in the mascarpone cheese and stir through until completely melted. Allow the sauce to simmer to develop the flavour while you cook your pasta.
  • When the pasta is cooked, scoop out a little of the starchy water and drain the pasta.
  • Tear up the basil leaves and add them with a little of the pasta water and the cooked chorizo back into the sauce. Mix thoroughly and add in the pasta.
  • If you want to loosen the sauce a little add more pasta water.
  • Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper or more paprika if needed.
  • Garnish with fresh parmesan, black pepper and a few more basil leaves on top.
  • Serve with a simple green salad and fresh bread to mop up the sauce.








2 thoughts on “Pasta with Tomato Chorizo and Mascarpone Sauce

  1. While this dish sounds nice, the pics look very unappetising, also why on earth would you remove the onion?? That’s sacrilege!! Decided to skip this one…

    1. Hi Julie, these pictures are poor to be fair. I was fighting with poor winter light when I posted this and I clearly didn’t give them enough time. I’ve been meaning to update the photos and now that the evenings are longer you’ve given me a nudge at the ideal time to do that, so thank you. The method of cooking the onion this way is mentioned in the other post that is linked in the recipe. It was pioneered by Marcella Hazan as a way of getting maximum flavour into a sauce with little effort. Ideal for people who are looking for these little shortcuts to make life easier. I actually put in the original post that I eat the onion, so I totally agree it is sacrilege to throw it away! Of course you can cook an onion in the conventional way and leave it in. That’s the beauty of adapting recipes to your own preferences.

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