Octopus Genovese



Octopus Genovese

We love experimenting and today we tried a truly tasty and delicious pasta dish, the octopus Genovese! We started with a sauce that needs no introduction: the Genovese, a typical Neapolitan preparation. You've surely tasted it in the city of the sun and Vesuvius, either with pasta, usually macaroni or sedanini, but also in Rome as a side of one of the most famous street foods of the Capital. In this recipe, however, we propose substituting the classic beef with octopus... golden onions, which give the dish its unmistakable character, are always essential, even in this seafood variant. Rigatoni with octopus Genovese: once tried, it will become one of your favorite recipes!

Also try these first courses with octopus:

  • Pasta with octopus and tomato
  • Spaghetti with octopus sauce
  • Pasta with octopus ragù and almonds
  • Guitar spaghetti with octopus ragù


Rigatoni 11.3 oz (320 g)
Octopus 1.8 lbs (800 g) - already cleaned
Yellow onions 3.3 lbs (1.5 kg)
Celery 1 rib
Carrots 1 - medium
Garlic 1 clove
White wine 0.8 cup (200 g)
Extra virgin olive oil to taste
For dressing
Pecorino toscano cheese to taste - aged (to grate)

How to prepare Octopus Genovese

To prepare rigatoni with octopus Genovese, start by peeling the golden onions 1, then cut them into thin slices 2. Next, trim, peel, and chop the carrot 3.

Peel the celery stalk and chop it 4. In a saucepan, heat a generous splash of oil with a whole peeled garlic clove. Then add the chopped celery and carrot 5. Let them sauté for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. After removing the beak, chop the already eviscerated octopus into 0.79-inch pieces 6.

Add the octopus to the saucepan 7 and remove the garlic 8. The octopus will release its own water, so increase the heat to medium-high and deglaze with white wine 9. Let the alcohol evaporate: this will take a few moments.

Now lower the heat, add the onions 10, stir 11, and cook covered over low heat for about 2 and a half to 3 hours 12.

Stir occasionally and check that the sauce does not stick to the bottom of the pot 13. When about 10 minutes are left, you can boil the pasta until al dente in a pot of salted boiling water 14. Then drain it directly into the sauce 15.

Stir to combine 16. Serve on plates and, if you like, garnish with grated Pecorino cheese to taste 17. The octopus Genovese is ready to be enjoyed 18.

How to store

It is recommended to consume rigatoni with octopus Genovese immediately. It can be stored in the refrigerator for a day in an airtight container.

If you used fresh octopus, you can freeze the sauce once cooked and cooled.


You can add bay leaves for flavor if you prefer.

You can omit the Pecorino or replace it with Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.