Peperonata is one of those delightful dishes that showcases the magic of creating incredible flavors with just a handful of high-quality ingredients. This Peperonata recipe embodies the essence of Italian cuisine – simplicity, freshness, and vibrant flavors. Get ready to savor the essence of summer with this classic dish. Perfect as is!
A frying pan filled with peperonata.

What is Peperonata?

Peperonata or pepperonata (pronounced peh-peh-roh-NAH-tah) is a delightful Italian dish made from sweet bell peppers, onions, and ripe tomatoes, all simmered together to create a harmonious blend of flavors. This savory-sweet pepper stew hails from Southern Italy and is a beloved addition to antipasti platters, sandwiches, pasta, or served as a side dish.

Related recipes: San Marzano Tomato Sauce (Marinara Sauce) / Napoli Sauce

What You’ll Love About Peperonata Italiana


  • VERSATILE – Serve as a side dish, a condiment, or a topping for grilled meats or pasta.
  • HEALTHY – This dish is low carb, keto-friendly, and gluten free. This recipe uses fresh ingredients that are easy to source. Bell peppers can be a healthy source of antioxidants and Vitamin C.
  • EASYPeperonata is simple to prepare and cook.
Peperonata recipe ingredients laid out on a tiled background with labels.

The Ingredients

  • Bell Peppers – Also known as capsicum. Use a mix of red bell peppers, yellow, orange and/or green bell peppers for a colorful and flavorful peperonata.
  • Tomatoes – Ripe, juicy tomatoes are essential. You can use canned tomatoes e.g. San Marzano if fresh ones are not in season. I like to use a mixture of colorful cherry tomatoes in my Italian sauce.
  • Herbs – Fresh basil or parsley is traditionally used for garnish.
  • Red Pepper Flakes (Chilli flakes) – For a hint of heat, add red pepper flakes to taste.

How to Make Classic Peperonata

Step 1. Slice large bell peppers into thin strips, about 1/4 inch wide. Use any combination of orange bell peppers, red, green or yellow bell peppers.

Step 2. In a large skillet or frying pan, heat extra virgin olive oil over medium heat. Add sliced onions and sauté until they begin to soften, about 3-4 minutes.

Step 3. Add the sliced peppers and sauté for 10-12 minutes, or until the peppers start to soften and blister.

Step 4. Stir in the tomatoes. Cook for an additional 5 minutes, allowing the tomatoes to release their juices.

Step 5. Sprinkle in the dried oregano and red pepper flakes. Season the mixture with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Step 6. If you’re using balsamic vinegar, add it now for a sweet-tangy depth of flavor.

Sauteed capsicums in an orange skillet with fresh basil leaves on top.

Step 7. Reduce to low heat and let the peperonata mixture simmer gently for another 10-15 minutes.

Step 8. Just before serving, scatter torn fresh basil leaves over the top.

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Tips for Success:

  • Use a wide skillet or pan to ensure even cooking.
  • Don’t rush; slow cooking allows the flavors to meld.
  • Adjust the sweetness and spiciness to your liking with bell pepper and red pepper flakes.

Substitutions

Use roasted peppers in place of raw bell peppers. Longhorn peppers or chili peppers can be added. The bell peppers are not spicy nor is the peperonata spicy. You can add hot chili to it if you like.

Variations

  • Peperonata con Patate: Add sliced potatoes or cauliflower florets to make it heartier. This peperonata sauce would be perfect over grilled cauliflower cutlets.
  • Peperonata with Anchovies: For a salty twist, stir in some anchovy fillets.
  • Peperonata with Capers: Briny capers can add a delightful pop of flavor.
  • Swap tomato passata or tomato puree instead of fresh tomatoes to make the peperonata more saucy. Top your favourite pizza crust, focaccia, or pasta with the sauce.

Tips, Questions and How To Use it

How to Serve It?

Serve Peperonata as a side dish alongside grilled meats, as a topping for pasta (or keto pasta), or spread it on crusty bread.
I loved this recently on top of Famous Bacon Pizza (from Egg Fast 3.0) with Chermoula Lamb and Feta. It was an easy dinner and tasted sensational.
Try it with our Italian Baked Chicken Cutlets, Piccata Milanese, or Cote de Boeuf. It’s also an excellent accompaniment to eggs or a condiment for sandwiches and wraps.
Chicken Peperonata Recipe – spoon sauteed peppers over grilled or pan-fried chicken breast. Absolutely delicious!

How to Store it?

Peperonata can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days. It also freezes well, making it a convenient make-ahead dish.

Can I freeze it?

Yes, you can! Freeze it in serving sizes best for you and defrost overnight in the fridge before use or gently heat to defrost.

A bright orange skillet on a green tiles near a window filled with Italian pepper stew.

Next Recipes To Try

Here are just a few more delicious, easy keto recipes to try soon.

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Sauteed bell pepper sauce in a skillet topped with fresh basil.

Italian Peperonata Recipe

Peperonata is one of those delightful dishes that showcases the magic of creating incredible flavors with just a handful of high-quality ingredients. This Peperonata recipe embodies the essence of Italian cuisine – simplicity, freshness, and vibrant flavors. Get ready to savor the essence of summer with this classic dish. Perfect as is!
5 from 75 votes!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Course: Sauce, Side Dish
Cuisine: Italian
Diet: Diabetic, Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Recipe Category: Low Carb
Calories: 56kcal
Author: Megan Ellam
Servings: 8 serves
Tap or hover over number to scale ingredients
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Ingredients 

  • 3 (3) large bell peppers a mix of red, yellow, and orange, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons (2 tablespoons) olive oil
  • 1 (1) large onion thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves (3 cloves) garlic minced
  • 1 cup (1 cup) cherry tomatoes halved, see notes
  • 1 teaspoon (1 teaspoon) dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon (½ teaspoon) red pepper flakes adjust to taste
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon (1 tablespoon) balsamic vinegar optional, see notes
  • Fresh basil leaves torn, for garnish

Instructions

CONVENTIONAL METHOD

  • Wash the bell peppers, then cut off the tops and remove the seeds and membranes. Slice the peppers into thin strips, about 1/4 inch wide.
  • In a large skillet or frying pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add sliced onions and sauté until they begin to soften and turn translucent, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant
  • Add the sliced peppers and sauté them for about 10-12 minutes, or until the peppers start to soften and blister.
  • Stir in the tomatoes. Cook for an additional 5 minutes, allowing the tomatoes to release their juices.
  • Sprinkle in the dried oregano and red pepper flakes. Season the mixture with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. If you’re using the balsamic vinegar, add it now for a sweet-tangy depth of flavor.
  • Reduce the heat to low and let the peperonata mixture simmer gently for another 10-15 minutes. This allows the flavors to meld and the peppers to become tender while retaining their vibrant colors.
  • Just before serving, scatter torn fresh basil leaves over the peperonata for a burst of aromatic freshness. Serve the peperonata warm as a side dish, over grilled meats, as a topping for bruschetta, or even mixed into pasta.

THERMOMIX METHOD

  • Wash the bell peppers, then cut off the tops and remove the seeds and membranes. Slice the peppers into thin strips, about 1/4 inch wide.
  • Place the olive oil, onion, and garlic in mixer; chop 3 sec/speed 7. (see notes)
  • Scrape down sides of bowl; cook 3 min/120°C/speed 1.
  • Add the sliced peppers; cook 8 min/120°C/reverse/speed 1/mc off.
  • Add the tomatoes, dried oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and black pepper; cook 10 min/100°C/reverse/speed 1/mc off/
  • If desired, add the balsamic vinegar to the Thermomix during the last 2 minutes of cooking.
  • Once the peperonata is cooked and well-infused, transfer it to serving dishes. Scatter torn fresh basil leaves over the peperonata just before serving.

Video

Notes

Versatility: Peperonata is incredibly versatile. Serve it as a side dish, a topping for grilled meats, or a filling for sandwiches and wraps. 
Customize Heat: Adjust the amount of red pepper flakes to control the level of spiciness. Feel free to omit them if you prefer a milder flavor.
Vinegar: Balsamic vinegar is a perfect match with capsicum / bell peppers and tomatoes. Red wine vinegar is a great substitute. 
Storage: Peperonata can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. It can also be frozen for longer storage.
Ingredient Variations: While the traditional peperonata recipe features bell peppers, you can experiment by adding other vegetables like zucchini or eggplant for additional layers of flavor and texture. Enjoy the vibrant colors and rich flavors of this classic Italian dish.
Tomatoes: I use fresh tomatoes, but you can use canned tomatoes, roasted tomatoes, tomato puree or tomato passata.
Peperonata combines the sweetness of bell peppers, the depth of tomatoes, and the warmth of spices for a delightful culinary experience that captures the essence of Mediterranean cuisine.
When making peperonata in the Thermomix the onions can be chopped with the garlic or sliced as per the recipe. It is completely up to you. I prefer the onions sliced into strips for uniformity with the peppers.

Your Own Notes

Nutrition

Serving: 1serve | Calories: 56kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 7mg | Potassium: 167mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 1530IU | Vitamin C: 63mg | Calcium: 15mg | Iron: 1mg | Magnesium: 10mg | Net Carbs: 5g
Tried this recipe?Mention @meganellam or tag #madcreations!

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18 responses to “Italian Peperonata Recipe”

  1. 5 stars
    You got me with your beautiful and bright pictures, but once I made this peperonata I knew this would be a staple in my kitchen. Amazing! Thanks for the recipe and the inspiration.

  2. 5 stars
    Such a classic Italian dish that everyone loves! So simple yet so loaded with incredible flavors! Definitely a keeer!

  3. Madelyn

    5 stars
    Used this for the veggies in a Greek pita with beef and it was to die for. Can’t wait to make again!

  4. Kristina

    5 stars
    I used this is a topping for crusty bread as lunch and it was amazing! I can’t wait to try it for some of the other ways you suggested.

  5. 5 stars
    I love this recipe!! It is so easy, and it’s perfect to make at the last minute. Thank you so much for sharing such a great recipe 🙂

  6. Amanda

    5 stars
    I made this for some friends last night, and it was such a hit! It was so simple and added a wonderful fresh flavor.

  7. Tammy

    A lovely dish to make with the end of season peppers from the garden. This with crusty bread or tossed with pasta is total comfort food to me. Delicious!

  8. 5 stars
    OMG, the combination of flavors in this recipe is to die for. I will be making this again soon.

  9. 5 stars
    This is one of my favorites! I’ve always had this with eggplant but the pepper alternative may be my new favorite. Making this again for an appetizer!!

  10. Elizabeth

    5 stars
    So much color! Great recipe – thanks for sharing!

  11. 5 stars
    Lovely and flavourful veggie dish that the whole family enjoyed! It was a great way to use up extra peppers at home toO!

  12. You had me at Peppers, Onion & Garlic. I love this recipe, and this site

  13. 5 stars
    Love these peppers! Flavorful and delicious. My family loved them – 5 stars!

  14. Silvia

    5 stars
    Absolutely delicious! I’m a big fan of peppers, onions and garlic, also I have a lot of tomatoes from my garden. Making this recipe made me so happy, it’s so easy to make and so colorful. I’ve been adding it to tacos, eggs and with meats. Love it.

  15. Parma

    I had a big bag of pepper in my fridge and then I saw this lovely recipe. I tossed in some cooked pasta 😂. So delicious!

  16. 5 stars
    Love the colors of the Bell Peppers. Perfect vegan side dish for any meal. Quick and easy too.

  17. 5 stars
    Perfection! You brought back so many beautiful memories of my youth in Italy. My mom and grandmother made this dish often but never shared the recipe with me. Yours is divine and so easy to make and so rich in flavor.
    Thank you!

  18. Sailor

    5 stars
    I received notification of this recipe just as I was wondering what to do with some “aging” peppers in my fridge. This turned out absolutely perfect! I had it some baked cod and it was the perfect side. Thanks for a great recipe. I do have a question though. Can I preserve this and keep in the fridge with oil?

5 from 75 votes (60 ratings without comment)

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