pasta with roasted red pepper sauce


I read the Pioneer Woman’s cooking blog, even though I don’t find too many recipes there that are my style.  Ree tends to add more butter, more oil, and more cream to her dishes. And yes, all of those things make food very good. But it’s a safe bet that I live a more sedentary life than Ree does on her ranch, so I can’t be adding extra butter to everything I cook.


Occasionally, though, Ree makes a dish that does click with me, like this one. It’s an easy, fairly healthy, vegetarian, one-dish pasta meal. That is exactly how we normally eat.


The sauce is simply sautéed onions and garlic with pureed roasted red peppers, pine nuts, and heavy cream stirred in. I used less cream than Ree, of course, and I decided to keep the pine nuts whole instead of grinding them with the roasted peppers. I’m sure either way is fine; recipes as straightforward as this are easy to adapt to your preferences.


I also burnt the pine nuts and under-roasted the peppers, but these aren’t changes that I recommend that you make. Fortunately, this pasta is so good that even that couldn’t ruin it.


One year ago: Blueberry Poppy Seed Brunch Cake

Pasta with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce (adapted from The Pioneer Woman Cooks)

Note from Bridget: This is fairly similar to the original recipe, in that it uses the same ingredients in almost the same proportions, but I’ve changed the directions slightly, mostly to give them some more detail. You can roast the peppers a few days advance, and keep them refrigerated (or frozen) either peeled or unpeeled. Also, Ree warns that this dish needs quite a bit of salt, and I found this to be the case. Please don’t be afraid to add salt at the end until the sauce has some flavor!

Serves 2

2 red bell peppers
6 ounces dry pasta
2 tablespoons pine nuts
2 teaspoons olive oil
½ medium onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 tablespoon minced flat leaf parsley
fresh Parmesan, shaved, grated or shredded

1. Adjust an oven rack to the top position and heat the broiler. Line a baking sheet with foil. Cut a ½-inch ring off the tops and bottoms of the peppers. Remove the seeds and stems, then cut the remaining cylinders of pepper in half lengthwise, into two wide strips. Lay the strips of pepper and the rings skin-side up on the foil-lined pan, pushing the strips down. Broil until thoroughly blackened, 6-8 minutes. Put the broiled peppers in a bowl; cover the bowl and set aside for at least 10 minutes.

2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add 1 tablespoon salt and the pasta. Cook the pasta according to the package instructions, until al dente. Drain and return to the cooking pot.

3. Meanwhile, heat a medium skillet, preferably not nonstick, over medium heat. Add the pine nuts and toast, shaking the pan occasionally, until golden brown and fragrant, 3-6 minutes. Remove the pine nuts from the pan and set aside.

4. Peel the skins off of the peppers. Add them to a blender or food processor and purée.

5. Add the olive oil to the now-empty skillet over medium heat. Once heated, add the onion. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until softened and just browned around the edges, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute, then stir in the red pepper puree and ½ teaspoon salt. Pour in the cream and toasted pine nuts, and stir until the sauce is evenly heated. Check for seasoning, adding additional salt if necessary.

6. Add the sauce to the cooked pasta, and stir over medium-high heat until everything is heated and the pasta absorbs some of the sauce. Serve, topping each portion with parsley and Parmesan.



  1. I’m so glad that you made this. I starred it in my reader but was on the fence. I’ll definitely be trying it now. Looks great.

  2. I also starred this recipe, because I love red peppers. Yes, Ree makes recipes fit for hard working cowboys. I’ve made several of hers (always winners) because I have two skinny men in my house. That way, I can sneak some of it and let the piranhas finish off the rest. Your photos are beautiful. I’ll definitely have to make this dish.

  3. Looks great. I made this a couple days after I saw it on her blog… definitely worth trying and easy to adapt!

  4. Don’t you just LOVE the way red peppers smell when roasting? Mmmmm!

  5. That’s my kind of pasta!! Holy yum.

  6. This looks so gook! I love your blog and learn so much from it. Thanks!

  7. This looks great…and a nice change from tomato sauces. Looking forward to trying it!

  8. Oh yum! This is one of Ree’s recipes that I have had bookmarked since she posted it and I still haven’t gotten around to making it. Glad to hear you liked it!

  9. I love roasted red peppers with pasta and this dish looks fantastic! Beautiful pictures too.

  10. I think I might have to make this tomorrow! I’ve been craving some good pasta and this looks like something we would like, plus I’ve got some pine nuts that I want to use.

  11. I didn’t have any pine nuts on hand so I just made this without ’em and it was still fabulous. Thanks for highlighting this recipe!

  12. I made this too one day and I added goat cheese (and some water) instead of cream. It added amazing flavour! It didn’t need to add as much salt.

  13. Oh and I also added lemon juice!