Angel hair pasta with roasted red pepper sauce is an easy vegetarian dish that everyone enjoys. Ready in just 15 minutes!
Why you’ll love it: This recipe is super fast; you can serve it as a main course or a side.
How long it takes: 15 minutes
Equipment you’ll need: large pot for pasta, large skillet, blender
Easy. Vegetarian. Two words that make me happy.
This pasta is a great summer meal that is colorful, flavorful and easy to prepare. You can have it ready in about fifteen minutes.
Even my dad, who doesn’t like red peppers, enjoys this pasta, although I think his real favorite is pink pasta with tomatoes. Truly, my dad loves any kind of pasta, and so do I.
About This Recipe
This pasta is so easy to make. It’s a great recipe to have in your side pocket for quick meals. You can feel totally comfortable serving it to guests too. Keep a jar of roasted red peppers and a box of angel hair pasta in your pantry so you’re ready to whip up this easy sauce.
What do you need to make this sauce? Besides roasted red peppers and angel hair pasta, you’ll need an onion, a couple cloves of garlic, a splash of olive oil, half-and-half (heavy cream works well, too), and a pinch of cayenne pepper. It’s so simple.
If you have an abundance of fresh red peppers, roast your own. It’s more economical and easy to do. Take a look at the FAQ section for more information.
The full recipe with instructions, measurements, and nutrition information can be found near the end of the post.
How To Make This Pasta Sauce
Get a pot of water boiling for the pasta. Angel hair pasta cooks really quickly. It will be al dente in about 5 minutes so don’t wait to get the sauce started.
Heat up a tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet; add a chopped onion and a couple of cloves of garlic, sliced. There’s no need to get fancy with chopping because they’ll be pulverized in the blender. Sauté until the onion is translucent and beginning to soften.
Add the onion and garlic to a blender, along with a jar of roasted red peppers (drained), half-and-half, and a dash of cayenne pepper. Process until the sauce is nice and smooth. It will be a gorgeous orange color.
When the pasta has finished cooking, drain it, and put it back into the pasta pot. Add the sauce and stir until the pasta is coated.
How To Serve This Pasta
Garnish the pasta with lots of fresh basil. Freshly grated or shredded Parmesan cheese is really good, too.
Another delicious idea? Top the pasta with sautéed shrimp. Just use the same skillet that you used for the onions.
Roasted red peppers are a healthy food. According to WebMD, red peppers are low in calories, and contain vitamin A and C, and lots of other antioxidants. Roasting them reduces the vitamin C content by 25%. Commercial jarred red peppers have added salt and citric acid which act as preservatives.
It’s easy to make your own roasted red peppers. Wash the peppers, cut them in half, and remove the stem, seeds, and membrane. Place them, cut sides down, on a rimmed baking pan lined with parchment paper or foil for easy cleanup. Bake in a preheated oven (400°F) for 35 to 40 minutes, or until skins are blackened. Remove the peppers from the oven and place them in a bowl; cover with plastic wrap. Let the peppers steam for 10 minutes or so or until they are cool enough to handle. Remove the skins. The tough outer skin should easily separate from the flesh.
Roasted red peppers will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days and can be frozen for up to 6 months.
For more about roasting peppers, check out my post about how to roast poblano peppers (4 methods). The technique is pretty much the same for all peppers.
Roasted red peppers are sweet and delicious. Add them to sandwiches, salads, and pizzas. Try them on scrambled eggs or omelets. Top burgers or grilled chicken sandwiches. Make sauces, spreads, or soups with roasted red peppers. I love to eat them right out of the jar!
Make It Your Own
- Use any type of pasta you prefer: whole wheat, gluten-free, chickpea, etc. Different shapes work well, too. The advantage of angel hair is that it cooks quickly and and, because it’s more delicate, it doesn’t overpower the sauce.
- Instead of buying a jar, make your own roasted red peppers.
- Heavy cream can be substituted for the half-and-half.
- Like a smoky flavor? Add a half teaspoon of smoked paprika.
- Add a teaspoon of dried Italian seasoning.
- Substitute a pinch of red pepper flakes for the cayenne pepper.
You can easily make the sauce a couple of days ahead. It keeps well in the fridge for up to a week in a tightly covered container.
Reheat the sauce gently in the pasta pot while the pasta is draining. Don’t boil it because the sauce may curdle.
Storage & Reheating Tips
Store leftover pasta and sauce in the refrigerator. It will keep for three or four days.
Reheat individual portions in the microwave until warmed through. Do not overheat. Larger portions can heated in a large skillet on the stove.
More Pasta Sauces
Cook something slightly different tonight! Pasta can be “sauced” with lots of exciting toppings. Try:
- Carrot Pasta Sauce
- Fresh Tomato Cream Sauce with Angel Hair Pasta (Pink Pasta)
- Skinny Alfredo Sauce made with Cauliflower
- Creamy Enchilada Sauce – for a southwestern twist
- Basil Pesto Recipe (with tips & tricks!)
- Chicken and Spinach Pasta with Lemon Cream Sauce
- Pasta with Asparagus and Scrambled Eggs
- Creamy Enchilada Sauce – for a southwestern twist
- 16 ounces angel hair pasta, uncooked
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup chopped onion (1 medium sized onion)
- 1 clove garlic, sliced (1 large clove or 2 small cloves)
- 1 jar (12 to 13 ounces) roasted red peppers, drained (about 1 ½ cups)
- ½ cup half-and-half (heavy cream is fine, too)
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper, or to taste
- fresh basil leaves, to garnish
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Cook pasta as directed on the package.
- While the pasta is cooking, heat olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic, reduce to medium heat, and cook until the onions are softened and translucent. Stir occasionally.
- Place the cooked onion and garlic, drained red peppers, half-and-half and cayenne in a food processor or blender and purée until smooth.
- Drain the pasta, return to pan, and pour the sauce over it. Stir to coat the pasta with sauce. Serve with torn basil leaves.
- If desired, substitute whole wheat or gluten-free pasta. Any type of pasta works but the advantage of angel hair pasta is that it cooks very quickly. The delicate texture works well with this lighter sauce.
- Top with grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.
- Variations: Add a half teaspoon of smoked paprika for a smoky flavor. Add a teaspoon of dried Italian seasoning. Reduce or increase the garlic. Substitute red pepper flakes for the cayenne pepper.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.