Pasta is one of those foods that doesn’t really need help being popular. You can add whatever sauces, cheeses, or toppings, but no matter what, you will enjoy that bowl of pasta. It doesn’t need your help. In the words of Beyonce, it is #flawless.
But when Gigi Hadid posted a simple, spicy vodka pasta recipe on her Instagram Stories and the internet exploded with excitement, I got curious. Seeing how simple this recipe was compared to how much attention it received, I needed to know if her take on a classic recipe was worth the hype. So I tried it for myself.
Gigi's Pasta Vs. My Pasta
On its face, this is a very basic penne vodka recipe, but Gigi put her own personal stamp on the dish with a couple of tweaks:
- Shells instead of penne
- Adding red pepper flakes
I wanted to take things up a notch and really amplify the spice, so I made a couple of changes of my own:
- Adding fermented Calabrian chili peppers from Trader Joe's instead of Gigi's red pepper flakes
- Adding way more cheese
The heat from the Calabrian chili peppers is a bit more intense spice-wise. It adds some flavor, and it keeps the dish Italian.
When it came time to add cheese, I didn’t hold back. Where Gigi called for a quarter cup of parmesan cheese, I added the entire container. Yes, you read that right. The whole. Entire. Thing. And do I regret it? Of course not. It was the right decision, because more cheese is always a good thing.
The Verdict: A-
Now that I’ve eaten my version of the recipe plus days’ worth of leftovers, I can confidently say that it is definitely a very good pasta recipe and worth making. It’s saucy, spicy, cheesy, everything you want a pasta dish to be.
Overall, you can’t go wrong with a pasta recipe, and this one is easy to make and absolutely delicious. Plus, you can make it your own by adding your own ingredients. So if I were to grade Gigi Hadid’s recipe, I’d give it an A minus—only because I think my version of her recipe was an A plus!
If I were to make Gigi Hadid's vodka pasta again, which I probably would, there are some things I would do differently. These may surprise you.
- I would add more chili pepper. Because the recipe called for heavy cream, and then I added so much extra cheese on top of that, it toned down the spice. so I would add maybe another tablespoon of chili peppers.
- I would either add more cheese, or a few different kinds of cheeses. When my friend Kate tried this recipe she added mozzarella on top and stuck it in the broiler for a few minutes. I think that is a great idea that I would love to try!