Penne and Shrimp with a Tomato Cream Sauce

I realized a few days ago that today is Ash Wednesday.  For our Catholic home, that means fasting and no meat today.  There went my meal plan!  The next few days all have meat in them, so I had to come up with a different dish.  I decided on a tomato cream sauce over penne pasta and sautéed shrimp (seafood is okay).  Husband’s comment was “Wow!  This is really good!  Wow!”  One too many “wow”s for my taste, but apparently he really liked it!  It’s a lighter cream sauce than an alfredo or other heavy cream sauce, but definitely satisfies a craving for a creamy pasta dish.

Recipe – Serves 4

8 oz whole wheat penne pasta

8 oz raw shrimp

2 T olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 c dry white wine

1/2 c Greek yogurt

1/2 c heavy cream

1 c plain tomato sauce

5 large basil leaves, chopped

3 T fresh parsley, chopped

salt to taste

pepper to taste


  1. Put a pot of water on to boil and cook your pasta while you complete the next few steps.
  2. Pour one tablespoon of oil into a fairly large pan (you’ll eventually have all the ingredients in it, so plan ahead) and sauté the shrimp until cooked through (they’ll turn pink).
  3. Move the shrimp onto a plate and set aside.
  4. Put the other tablespoon of olive oil in the pan and add the chopped onion and minced garlic.  Sauté until translucent (about 7 minutes).
  5. Add the wine, cream, Greek yogurt, and tomato sauce.  Stir and allow to simmer for a few minutes while you…
  6. Chop the shrimp into small bite-sized pieces and remove the tails.
  7. Add the shrimp, basil, and parsley into the sauce.
  8. Drain your pasta and shake in the colander to dry it off some (this will let the sauce stick better).
  9. Add the pasta into the pan and allow to simmer for 5 minutes.
  10. Serve warm!


  • Whole wheat penne is my preferred pasta for this dish, but any pasta will work.
  • You can substitute chicken broth for the white wine if you prefer not to use alcohol (but all the alcohol will cook out).
  • Make the dish vegetarian by leaving out the shrimp!

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