A wonderfully delicious Roasted Red Pepper Pesto Pasta recipe where your favourite pasta of choice is tossed with a rich and creamy red pepper sauce and wilted greens. This pasta is the perfect veggie-packed weeknight meal or can be made to impress at any social gathering.
More like my favourite pasta ever!
I mean, how can you resist oven roasted red bell peppers blended with fresh basil and parsley and garlic and lots of parmesan until smooth and silky and then tossed with pasta (a gluten free 4-grain blend to be exact) and lots of sautéed spinach and more cheese.
It’s just so good. And a completely gluten free and vegetarian-friendly alternative to the traditional tomato-based pastas while still being rich and creamy and still packed with veggies.
This tomato-less sauce has been all the rage with the tomato haters in my kitchen (umm… yes, you there, J) mostly because I finally made a pasta dish that wasn’t drowning (but in a good way) with my Healthy Tomato Basil Pasta Sauce. J just doesn’t like those tomatoes.
But the pesto has also been all the rage because of roasted red peppers.
I looooove of roasted red peppers. I used to buy jars and jars of the stuff and put them into everything and anything. And it wasn’t until last week or so when I was at the market and saw the biggest bell pepper sale yet – they were pretty much giving red, yellow and orange bell peppers away by the bucket (naturally I bought pretty much all of them because who can turn down a bargain like that) when I got inspired to started roasted them myself.
I cannot get enough!
MORE ABOUT THIS ROASTED RED PEPPER PESTO PASTA RECIPE…
You could definitely use jarred roasted red pepper here but I recommend roasting them yourself.
Side note: We don’t have gas appliances (apparently, roasting peppers on an open flame on your stove makes this job super easy) but the oven works well for this too. A lot of roasting pepper resources on the internet say to broil whole peppers but I haven’t had much luck with this method either. So instead, I cut my peppers, place them cut side down on a baking sheet and roast for about 30 minutes at 425F, flipping them over at about the 20-minute mark.
And then there’s the thing about peeling the skins off of your roasted peppers… It can be a tedious job. Some of those skins will NOT want to come off. And especially so if they’ve cooled too much. But, in this case, it doesn’t make much of a difference if the peppers have the skins or not. Because the peppers are being, more or less, pureed into a sauce, you really don’t notice the skins anyway.
And speaking of pesto… THIS sauce! It’s kind of eat-it-with-a-spoon good. And I kind of wish I was able to put it on everything. There’s all the roasted peppers, lots of fresh basil and parsley and a little bit of garlic and red pepper flakes and parm. Everything goes into the food processor to be blended with a little olive oil, which makes this a super rich and super savoury sauce.
To make this a VEGAN pasta dish, substitute the parmesan for a couple tablespoons of nutritional yeast.
…But cheese has kind of been my favourite thing ever lately so I may or may not have added extra the last time I made this (which was yesterday… which made it so much more delicious).
For serving, it could be easier – cook your favourite pasta according to package directions and wilt some greens. I always go with spinach because it’s what I always have on hand. You can add even more veggies to this pasta dinner by adding some sautéed mushrooms, caramelized onions or crispy roasted broccoli too. Then you just toss everything together, top with more cheese (or nutritional yeast) and dinner.is.served.
Recipe Updated March, 2017.