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Peppers in tomato sauce on a serving plate
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5 from 1 vote

La Peperonata

La Peperonata is an incredibly delicious Italian summer dish made with slow-cooked bell peppers in a beautiful tomato sauce. This simple side dish can be served hot or cold, with meat or fish or as an antipasto with some char-grilled ciabatta.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time55 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 91kcal
Author: Emily Kemp


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 6 large bell peppers different colours sliced (around 900g-1kg)
  • 1 red onion finely sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled but left whole
  • 1.5 cups jarred strained tomatoes (passata) (500g)
  • 1/2 cup water (120ml)
  • 2 tbsp capers
  • 1 tsp white wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Add 1 tbsp of olive oil to a saute pan or deep skillet on a medium heat. Once hot, add the onion and whole garlic cloves and saute, stirring often until the onion has softened (about 5 minutes).
  • Add the sliced bell peppers and stir to coat in the oil. Cover the pan with a lid and cook the peppers for 25 minutes until tender but not completely soft.
  • Add the strained tomatoes, water, caper, vinegar and a good pinch of salt and pepper and stir to mix everything together.
  • Simmer uncovered for 15 minutes or until the peppers are soft and the sauce has reduced. Taste to see if it needs any additional salt then serve as a side or antipasto.



  • Cooking the peppers covered is important so they soften without burning. If you don't have a lid for your skillet then place a large baking sheet on top.
  • You can use any coloured bell peppers you like but don't use all green ones if you can help it because they aren't as sweet and have a more savoury flavour.
  • Instead of adding capers and vinegar you can add things like olives, red pepper flakes, fresh parsley or basil or leave them all out. How you flavour it is up to you!
  • You can use strained tomatoes, canned chopped or plum tomatoes (high quality) or fresh ripe tomatoes to make this. If using fresh tomatoes you'll need around 4 cups of freshly chopped tomatoes (roughly 600g).
  • The Peperonata will keep well in the fridge for around 3-4 days or can be frozen in suitable containers.


Calories: 91kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 104mg | Potassium: 552mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 4045IU | Vitamin C: 160mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 2mg