This Roasted Red Pepper Rigatoni is an easy-to-make, flavorful pasta dish that is going to knock your socks off! It is super easy to make, cooked al dente and drenched in creamy roasted red pepper sauce, added basil and spices. This dish creates an explosion of flavors in your mouth in the most satisfying way!
Light, on the healthy side of things, and the perfect comfort dish to get you through these never-ending cool months. Sure to be a repeat on your table tonight!
ROASTED RED PEPPER RIGATONI
This pasta is not for those afraid of a good calorie or two and one that should be an indulgence you take seriously because this dish is seriously good. With rigatoni swimming in a creamy roasted red pepper sauce and melted cheesy goodness baked in, you’re going to think twice about putting your spoon down and pushing your plate away. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
A huge YUMMY for this dish, I am telling you. This recipe takes about 25-30 minutes from start to finish. It’s quick and easy making it a perfect dinner recipe for your family. Roasted red peppers add sweetness and a bold flavor to this dish. You can either buy store bought roasted red pepper which I used, or broil or roast yours at home.
Easy recipes during these busy holiday months? Even better! Especially when the dish is made with minimal ingredients and done so effortlessly. You can serve this as is, or with added protein for a complete meal.
When choosing pasta, choose one that is going to hold on to the creamy sauce – like you see pictured below with the rigatoni. Look at all the ridges and the centers holding the sauce. Think of this sauce like you would a Baked Macaroni and Cheese. You want it to fill the ridges or crevices. If you don’t have rigatoni, you can use bowtie, penne, elbow, ziti, or macaroni.
I recommend carefully pouring the sauce into a food processor or blender to fully puree the ingredients. You don’t want to be left with any chunks! I have a Hamilton Beach Food Processor and it works like a dream for me.
Cream cheese will melt quicker and easier if it is first softened to room temperature and then sliced into small cubes prior to being added to the pan. Forget to take it out of the fridge in time? No problem! Simply place it close to (but a safe distance from) the burner when your pot of water is coming to a boil. I generally place it on the stove (I have a glass top) and it warms enough to soften it.
Roasted Red Pepper Rigatoni
- 12 oz rigatoni pasta (or pasta of choice)
- 3 shallots (thinly sliced (or 1/2 medium yellow onion))
- 1 tbsp minced garlic (approximately 3-4 cloves)
- 1 cup half-and-half (or sub with milk of choice or heavy cream)
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 12 oz jar of roasted red peppers in water, (drained and rinsed)
- 4 oz cream cheese (softened to room temp and cubed)
- grated parmesan cheese
- fresh or dried basil
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, cook pasta according to the instructions on the package (each pasta varies). Drain well and return to pot.
- While the pasta is cooking, heat butter in a large sauce pan over medium heat. One melted, add the sliced shallots and cook until translucent; 2-3 minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook 1 minute.
- Pour in half-and-half and stir to loosen any onions or garlic. Add the parmesan cheese and cream cheese. Stir frequently for 2-3 minutes, or until cream cheese has melted. Add the roasted red peppers to warm.
- Safely pour the sauce into a food processor (or safe dish to use an immersion blender) or blender and puree until creamy. Taste test sauce and season with salt and pepper, if desired and to taste. Pour the sauce over the pasta and gently toss to coat.
- Serve garnished with fresh basil and parmesan cheese. Enjoy!