Most tomato sauces need to simmer for hours, but I have found a delicious shortcut. This 10 minute Sun Dried Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Sauce is a quick and easy alternative to making marinara sauce from scratch. Instead of simmering tomatoes for hours, this sauce is made in the blender with sundried tomatoes! It is so easy that anyone can make it.
Charles usually isn’t a big fan of pasta, but he had three helpings of pasta topped with this sauce. And he got excited to eat leftovers a few days later. That is how I know I recipe is a hit.
The only real cooking involved is in roasting the bell peppers and heating up the sauce! Honestly, you can make this sauce in the time it takes to boil water and cook pasta.
The basil brings this sauce to life. Without it the sauce has a slightly bitter flavor. The basil helps to eliminate the bitter taste while adding bright freshness to the sauce. You will need to add at least 10 big basil leaves to the sauce.
When it comes to selecting pasta to serve topped with this sauce, I recommend a smaller pasta shape like orzo or orecchiette. The texture of the small pasta shapes is really satisfying with the sauce. Sometimes I add some diced rotisserie chicken to the sauce to transform this into a heartier meal.
If you don’t want to make pasta, this sauce is wonderful on pizza and you could even use it cold on sandwiches or bruschetta.
There are two tricks to cooking the very best pasta. The first is to generously salt your water. The second is to save a bit of pasta water (1/2 a cup will do) and to add that to the sauce, along with the pasta and let it all hang out and simmer for a minute. Undercook the pasta slightly to compensate for this extra cooking time in the sauce. This process really binds the sauce to the pasta letting it soak up extra flavor.
And before we get to the recipe- a note on sun dried tomatoes- usually grocery stores sell two types of sundried tomatoes: sundried tomatoes in a bag and sundried tomatoes in olive oil. You want to use the sundried tomatoes in olive oil because they have more moisture. I do use a fork to scoop them out of the olive oil and to drain off any excess oil.
Yields 4 servings
10 minPrep Time
2 minCook Time
12 minTotal Time
- 1 cup Sun Dried Tomatoes in Olive Oil
- 2 Red Bell Peppers
- 1/2 cup cream
- 3 tablespoons Parmesan
- 10 Basil Leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 1/4 teaspoon Pepper
- First, you need to roast the bell peppers. I like to do this by placing the peppers directly over a gas burner turned over medium heat. Rotate the peppers every 1-2 minutes charring all of the skin of the pepper. Then let cool, slice the peppers into 3 or 4 large chunks, and peel off the skin.
- Add the roasted bell peppers to a blender. Strain the sun dried tomatoes removing any excess oil and add them to the blender along with all of the remaining ingredients. Blend on the highest setting until smooth. Taste and add more salt and pepper if necessary. If the sauce is still slightly bitter add some more basil.
- When using this sauce for pasta, heat the sauce while you cook the pasta. Once the pasta has cooked, add about 1/2 cup of pasta water (simply the starchy water from cooking the pasta) and the cooked pasta, stir, and let simmer for 1-2 mintues before serving.
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