How to Make Simple and Healthy Roasted Red Peppers

by Anjali @ The Picky Eater on April 22, 2013

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I love roasted red peppers.

I love their texture, their flavor, and how they add a gourmet feel to so many dishes.

What I don’t love about them is that often at restaurants and the grocery store, they are packed in oil, or roasted in a ton of oil, which just adds unnecessary fat and calories to these beautiful healthy peppers.

So today, I’m excited to show you a fun trick to make healthy roasted red peppers at home that you can use in a ton of recipes! It’s super easy, and takes about 20 minutes. (This technique is thanks to my friend Vijay, who is the owner of Hungry Globetrotter - a food startup, and is a super chef in the kitchen :) )

Disclaimer: You need a gas stove to roast the peppers in this way. If you don’t have a gas stove, you will have to use an oven.

Step 1: Wash and dry your peppers (be sure to leave the stems on!). Turn on your gas stove to medium heat. Place one of the peppers on top of the flame (propped up by the burner grate)

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Step 2: Keep an eye on the pepper as the flame begins to blacken the skin – don’t worry about it getting charred – that’s what you want! The more charred it is, the easier it will be to peel. Use tongs to hold the pepper by the stem and turn it so the skin can blacken on all sides. When it’s close to done the skin will become charred and slightly wrinkled, like this:

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Step 3: When the peppers are done, transfer them to a large bowl while they are still super hot, and cover them with a towel.

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Covering the peppers with a towel allows them to steam while they cool, which helps cook them and also makes them easier to peel.

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Step 4: After about 20 minutes (or once the peppers have cooled) you can use your hands to peel the skin off the peppers. Then they will look like this:

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Step 5: Slice the peppers down the center and remove the seeds.

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Step 6: Julienne the peppers, and use them immediately, or put them in an airtight jar for future use.

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And that’s it! You just made restaurant quality roasted red peppers at home. One whole pepper will have just 30 calories, 7g carbs, 2.4g fiber, 5g sugar, 1g protein, making it the perfect topping or addition to any meal.

We made pizzas at home this weekend, which we topped with our roasted red peppers. Delicious!

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{ 41 comments… read them below or add one }

Ashley Cook April 22, 2013 at 12:51 pm

I used to hate eating bell peppers, but now I really enjoy them. I normally eat them as a raw snack. I never thought about roasting them and using them on pizza or in other meals. I will have to give this a try and see how I like them when they are roasted. Thank you for sharing!

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater April 24, 2013 at 12:22 am

Bell peppers raw are delicious! I actually love peppers in all forms: raw, sautéed, roasted, etc :) Definitely give this a try and let me know how it goes! I’m sure you will love them roasted!

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Sarah McBride April 22, 2013 at 1:07 pm

Your pizza looks awesome! I have been looking for good step by step instructions for roasting peppers myself. I just stumbled onto your blog, but I am glad I did! Thanks for sharing!

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater April 24, 2013 at 12:13 am

Awww thank you so much Sarah! It’s so nice to meet you :) The pizza we made was super simple, but super delicious. It was just homemade tomato sauce, garlic infused with olive oil, parmesan, sautéed spinach in white wine, basil, and of course – the roasted red peppers!

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Tim April 22, 2013 at 8:35 pm

Nice and simple! I grill a lot of vegetables, including peppers, but I really want to try this. My wife and I both love roasted peppers and they make great salad and omelette additions.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater April 24, 2013 at 12:23 am

Thank you so much Tim! Oh yes, roasted red peppers in salads and omelettes are amazing :) Great point! If you end up trying this with a gas stove you’ll have to let me know how the flavor compares to grilling the peppers!

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Rachel April 23, 2013 at 5:14 am

Thanks for this posting. I love roasted red peppers. Do you know how long the peppers will last in the airtight jar?

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater April 24, 2013 at 12:19 am

Hi Rachel! So if you pack them in an airtight jar without any oil or vinegar to preserve them, I think they will last for about 5 days max. But you can also freeze them which will help them to last for months! Hope that helps!

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Louise at Cake and Calico April 23, 2013 at 7:52 am

Great tips! I love peppers and we eat them a lot, but I’ve never done this with them.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater April 24, 2013 at 12:20 am

Thank you so much Louise! You should totally try this technique – it brings out such a great flavor in the peppers! Let me know if you do try it and how it goes :)

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dixya@food, pleasure, and health April 23, 2013 at 8:00 am

i love roasted peppers and sadly I use the ones in jar- yes packed in oil. But when I have time – I will use oven to roast them :) its delicious when added in hummus too.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater April 24, 2013 at 12:25 am

Aw haha – that’s ok Dixya! Actually, if you end up getting the ones packed in oil – find the organic kind that’s packed in Extra Virgin Olive Oil – because then it’s not actually that bad since you’re getting healthy fats and no preservatives! And yes!! Roasted red pepper hummus is the best! But then again, I like just about all kinds of hummus :)

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Nate April 24, 2013 at 7:14 pm

Hey! That’s a great idea cooking them over your burner. I always cook them on the grill or roast them in the oven. Thanks for the tip!

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater April 25, 2013 at 5:15 pm

No problem at all! Glad it’s helpful Nate!

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Tara April 26, 2013 at 8:16 pm

I wish I had a gas oven to try roasting the peppers like this. I’ll use the oven. I also remember a Greek friend of mine roasting peppers on a BBQ. Very delicious – and like you mentioned, way less oil than the kind you get in the restaurants. Delish!

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:08 pm

Oh yeah! You can totally roast peppers on a BBQ as well. I’m sure yours will turn out great! :)

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Karen April 28, 2013 at 3:36 am

This is a very nice post and it shows how to prepare healthy food. The overall of this blog post is very nice and very in detail. It will help me in preparing good food in coming days. Thanks :)

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:14 pm

No problem Karen! So glad it’s helpful!

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Jeff April 30, 2013 at 4:39 am

Red bell peppers are the bomb, and I love the idea of using the burner to char them. They’re so much tastier done that way. Thanks for the tip!

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:15 pm

No problem Jeff! And I’m with you – I love red peppers, especially when they are roasted!!

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Mike April 30, 2013 at 7:33 am

I have done this several times and really like the BBQ pit method. Just leave the grill grid off when starting your lump (or regular) charcoal and place the peppers right on top of the hot coals. Monitor the pepper skins, turning as needed when the skin chars and begins to turn black. After the peppers are suffieciently charred I place them in a one gallon zip-lock baggie and seal them for about 15 minutes. This will further steam the peppers, loosening the skins, and allowing them to cool a bit before peeling. After this step I grab a paper towel in one hand and place a pepper in the center of the towel. Then just grab the pepper by the stem and slide it firmly through the towel. Most of the skin will be removed in one pull. Smaller remaining pieces of skin can be pulled off by finger, or by rubbing the area with the same paper towel. Then just remove the stem and seeds. Lump charcoal will give a light, pleasant smokey taste to the peppers. This also works wonderfully for poblano peppers when making Chile Rellenos… just stuff with cheese and stick a toothpick through your slit to seal the pepper before returning it to the grill (atop the grill grid of course) for a short time to melt the cheese. Yummm !!!!!!

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:16 pm

These are great tips! Thank you so much for sharing Mike!! :)

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Crystal @ Simply Playful Fare April 30, 2013 at 7:34 pm

I love red peppers too, and this one looks awesome! What a neat trick. My husband usually roasts red peppers on the grill. I’ll have to get him to buy me a gas stove, so we can roast peppers in doors! Ha!

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:16 pm

Haha! That is a great incentive to get a gas stove :) Love it!

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Vincent May 1, 2013 at 6:07 am

Didn’t know that red peppers can be cooked like that, will try as soon as possible when I get my hand on some.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:17 pm

So glad this was helpful! Let me know if you end up trying this technique and how it turns out!

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Yong May 1, 2013 at 6:33 am

I love this blog, the color of the red peppers are just too attractive. It makes me want to stand up right away and immediately go to local supermarket to buy the red peppers and roast it.
It should be better you show us your pizza ingredient as well. Cheers :)

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:18 pm

Thanks Yong! Oh and my pizza ingredients were super simple: fresh pizza dough, parmesan cheese, tomato sauce, roasted red peppers, sautéed spinach in white wine and basil!

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Yong May 30, 2013 at 9:28 pm

Thank you for your ingredient and i really enjoy the red peppers.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater June 1, 2013 at 4:06 pm

So glad to hear that Yong!

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Angela Chieng May 1, 2013 at 8:17 am

I learned how to make simple and healthy roasted red peppers after I read the steps and information provided in the blog. It is easy to follow and understand. It is tasty and yummy. I love your idea to make this kind of red peppers. Thank you for the information provided in this blog and I appreciated it very much. Looking forward for your new recipe.

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:18 pm

Thanks Angela! I’m so glad this technique worked well for you!

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Frajes May 1, 2013 at 8:58 am

This was very creative. I like using these peppers when I cook, but the way you use it here for this pizza is a work of art. :-)

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:19 pm

Aw thank you so much!! :)

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Frajes May 4, 2013 at 9:32 am

You are welcome!!!

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Doris Lemonade May 1, 2013 at 10:31 am

Hi, I’m a girl from Malaysia. I’m doing some research and I found your blog. Your blog design looks very colourful and the picture is so clear. It gives people a very fresh feeling. The post about roasted the red pepper is interesting. This is my very first time saw this. Anyway I would go to try and see. Thanks for the sharing and hope to see more interesting sharing comes out from your blog. Have a nice day ;)

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:19 pm

Thanks Doris! It is great to meet you!

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Samuel May 1, 2013 at 4:39 pm

I dd not know that red pepers could be something so easy to roast, it looks so interesting the way you cooked it. Not only does it look tasty but it also looks very healthy, I would never have thought of using the home-stove-burner to roast it. Thanks for the new idea! It looks great, gonna try it out as soon as I get some peppers!

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 1, 2013 at 9:20 pm

Thanks Samuel! I’m sure you’ll love the peppers once they are roasted – the flavor is absolutely wonderful!

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Jia Ling May 20, 2013 at 3:02 am

I use this method all the time but have my small cook’s blowtorch handy for any stubborn skin that’s left after you’ve gone through your detailed steps through to #4. Nice pictures!

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Anjali @ The Picky Eater May 20, 2013 at 4:33 pm

Oh that’s great! Thanks Jia!

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