Hearty and very comforting, this pasta dish is one of the best meals you can whip up easily and quickly. Enjoy a Latin-inspired dish anytime with this hard-to-beat Barilla Rigatoni with Chorizo and Spicy Chipotle Cream Sauce!
1 lb fresh Mexican chorizo, removed from casings (or use fresh turkey or chicken chorizo for a lighter option)
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 lb box of Barilla Mezzi Rigatoni or other small pasta shapes (such as penne or large shells)
Zest of one whole lemon, finely grated
1 yellow onion, diced
2 red bell peppers, diced
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp smoked Spanish paprika (optional)
3 c. heavy cream
2 tbsp tomato paste
1-2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
1 c. grated cotija cheese
1/2 bunch cilantro, finely minced + more for garnish
Freshly ground black pepper
How to make Barilla Rigatoni with Chorizo and Spicy Chipotle Cream Sauce
Step 1: Pour 1 gallon of water into a large pot. Bring to a boil and season with 1 1/2 tbsp salt.
Step 2: Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions to the hot oil and cook for about 2 to 3 minutes or until translucent. Next, add the fresh chorizo and continue to cook for another 5 minutes, breaking the meat up using a wooden spoon as it cooks until completely browned.
Step 3: To the skillet, add the red bell pepper along with the garlic, chipotle peppers, paprika, lemon zest, half tsp kosher salt, heavy cream, and tomato paste. Bring everything to a boil, then decrease the heat to a gentle simmer for about 3 to 5 minutes until the sauce has reduced and slightly thickened, stirring often. When done, take the skillet off the heat.
Step 4: To the boiling water, add the pasta and cook about a minute or two shy of what is indicated in the package directions. Drain when done and set aside about a cup of pasta water.
Step 5: To the sauce, add the cooked pasta and cilantro. Place the skillet back on the stovetop and heat everything for about 1 to 2 minutes, stirring to coat the pasta well. If the sauce turned out too thick, add a little of the reserved pasta water until you reached your desired consistency.
Step 6: Take the skillet off the heat, then stir in the cotija cheese. To taste, season with black pepper and salt.
Step 7: Serve immediately garnished with extra cilantro. Enjoy!