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Mascarpone & Pepper Penne Pasta

Taking inspiration from Peperonata (an Italian stewed sauce of Sweet Bell Peppers with Olive Oil, Onion, Garlic, and Tomatoes), we’ve skipped the tomatoes and concentrated on summery yellow and red bell peppers for this recipe, then stirred in mascarpone cheese and baby spinach to serve over penne pasta for a budget-friendly vegetarian meal full of saucy comforting flavor!

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Eat this Mascarpone & Pepper Penne Pasta tonight!

An easy, rustic, vegetarian-friendly, super delicious meatless bowl of penne pasta comfort!
That doesn't take a lot of effort...
Step 6 - To serve, divide into bowls and sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan cheese!

ABOUT THIS RECIPE (per serving)

Gluten FreeVegetarianSoy Free
Servings:  4
AVG. Maker RATING: 
4.67 from 3 votes
Write a Recipe Review
Prep Time :7 minutes
Cook Time :23 minutes
Total Time :30 minutes
Course : Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine : American, Italian
Diet : Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.
Calories 654
Fat 32.8
Carbohydrates 73.1
Protein 14.5

Easy-Peasy, Breezy, and...

You don’t have to be a natural at cooking to make it L👀K effortless!

If you’re like me, every so often, I get in a mood where I don’t have much effort to cook.

When this happens, and my cooking mojo just isn’t flowing quite like it usually does, anything I force-cook comes out half-assed and mediocre at best. It’s not at all like when I’ve got my timing down and blissfully rolling along enjoying the process of cooking. So instead, it turns out overcooked, under-cooked, or seasoned way too much or too little.

To combat this happening, over the years, I’ve learned to “plan” for those days when my mojo takes flight to the normal relaxing rhythm of everyday cooking bliss. In a nutshell, I’m talking about planning out weekly meals allowing for those days when things are all off-kilter.

This easy Mascarpone & Pepper Penne Pasta recipe is one of my go-to meals perfect for those kinds of off-kilter days; it’s super delicious and vegetarian-friendly too!

#Hungry? Not in the mood for #cooking? Try this #GlutenFree #Vegetarian #Recipe for #Mascarpone & #Pepper #PennePasta. To get you back on track when your #CookingMojo goes haywire. #CookingGfreeDeliciously

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What are go-to meals?

These go-to meals can be anything from beans and franks to one of your favorite pasta dishes like this one is for me. If you want to know more about “Meal Planning” versus “Meal Prepping” for effortless cooking, check out the post that includes a free download for a meal plan template.

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Here’s How to Make One of my Favorite Go-to-Recipes -
Mascarpone & Pepper Penne Pasta

This meal is so simple and one of my favorite go-to meals to get me back on track when my cooking mojo goes haywire.

Closeup of Mascarpone & Pepper Penne Pasta in a bowl
PIN IT! Click the red icon in the upper left corner of this picture to save it on Pinterest!

The Penne pasta’s angled edges work amazingly in this dish to capture the chunky vegetable sauce made with sweet bell peppers, onions, olive oil, garlic, and mascarpone cheese. The ingredients build on rustic and simple flavors stewed together where everything gets tender and delicious without getting mushy.

You’ll begin by slow-cooking chopped sweet red and yellow bell peppers and onions

…with olive oil in a heavy-bottomed, high-sided pot or skillet for about 15-20 minutes or so on medium-low heat. Then add the garlic and season with salt, pepper, and a dash of ground nutmeg to taste, cooking for 2-3 minutes more. As the ingredients cook low and slow, the onions become translucent while the peppers infuse the oil, loading it with flavor.

While the peppers are cooking,

…put a large pot of salted water on to boil. Add the penne pasta to the boiling water and cook according to the instructions: drain, and reserve about ½ cup of the pasta cooking water.

Next, Mascarpone cheese (pronounced mahs-car POH-nay)

…adds a creamy texture when added to the pepper and onions to make the sauce. Add the mascarpone and reduce the heat to its lowest setting to slowly melt the cheese into the pepper and onion mixture, adding a little of the reserved pasta cooking water in if needed to make a creamy sauce. This sauce acts as the facilitator to marry all the flavors into one delicious bowl of pasta goodness.

To serve,

…pour the pepper and onion sauce over the pasta’s top; I like to add a handful or two of fresh baby spinach and toss lightly to coat the pasta nicely. To finish it off, sprinkle with a grating of parmesan cheese!

Picture the recipe step-by-step...

Recipe Timesaving Tips

It never hurts to meal plan earlier in the week to be ready for when you’re in a hurry or for when you aren’t in the mood to do a lot of pre-prep for your cooking. If you know ahead of time that you’ll be making this dish later, here are a few tips to save you time:

  • Deseed the peppers, chop them up, and store them ready to go in the refrigerator in tight-sealing containers or zipper bags to use later
  • Dice your onion too
  • Pre-measure your pasta into a plastic zipper bag if you know you won’t be using the whole bag or box, or
  • You can always pre-cook the pasta to al ‘dente and store it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to finish cooking and add it to your dish
  • And remember to reserve about 1/2 cup of the starchy pasta water. It will save in the refrigerator too!

Are you a meat-eater looking for a little protein to add to this dish?

Here are a few suggestions for adding satisfying protein to this dish:

  • Grilled, sliced chicken breast
  • Grilled, sliced bratwurst
  • Sauteéd shrimp

For more easy, healthy recipes that you can meal prep, check out this month’s round-up of ideas in the Meal Prep Collection!

XXO

Kymberley

P.S. If you try this recipe, let us know how you like it! Leave a comment below, share it, and rate it – it’s super helpful for other readers and us. Just click the blue-green comment bubble on the bottom left of your screen to jump to the comment area below.

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Closeup of Mascarpone & Pepper Penne Pasta in a bowl

Mascarpone & Pepper Penne Pasta

Taking inspiration from Peperonata (an Italian stewed sauce of Sweet Bell Peppers with Olive Oil, Onion, Garlic, and Tomatoes), we’ve skipped the tomatoes and concentrated on summery yellow and red bell peppers, then stirred in mascarpone cheese and baby spinach to serve over penne pasta for a budget-friendly meal full of saucy comforting flavor!
Kymberley @GfreeDeliciously
4.67 from 3 votes
This recipe may contain affiliate links. For more information, visit our Affiliate Disclosure.
Prep Time 7 minutes
Cook Time 23 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 4
Calories 654 kcal

EQUIPMENT

  • Heavy-bottomed, high-sided pot, skillet, or Dutch Oven
  • Large Saucepan
  • Utensils (Cooks Knife, Measuring Cups & Spoons, Large Spoon)

INGREDIENTS
 
 

  • 1 Red Bell Pepper
  • 1 Yellow Bell Pepper
  • 1 large Yellow Onion
  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 tablespoon garlic
  • ½ teaspoon White Pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon Salt
  • teaspoon ground Nutmeg
  • 12 ounces gluten-free Penne Pasta cook according to the instructions: drain, and reserve about ½ cup of the pasta cooking water.
  • 8 ounces Mascarpone Cheese
  • 2 handfulls Baby Spinach about 4 ounces
Add ingredients to your "Quick Access Shopping List" before ordering online.
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INSTRUCTIONS
 

  • Deseed the peppers and chop. Dice the onion. Add with oil, to a heavy-bottomed, high- sided pot over low heat. Place the lid on, and cook slowly for 15-20 minutes, occasionally stirring until the peppers soften, and the onions become translucent.
    Step 1 - Peppers, onions and olive oil in a high-sided pot or deep skillet
  • Add the garlic, season with salt, pepper, and a dash of nutmeg to taste, and cook for 2-3 minutes more. As the ingredients continue to cook low and slow, the onions become more translucent while the peppers infuse the oil and spices, loading it with flavor.
    Step 2 - Add the garlic, season with salt, pepper, and a dash of nutmeg to taste, and cook for 2-3 minutes more.
  • While the peppers are cooking, put a large pot of salted water on to boil. Add the penne pasta to the boiling water and cook according to the instructions: drain, and reserve about ½ cup of the pasta cooking water.
    Step 3 - Add the penne pasta to the boiling water and cook according to the instructions: drain, and reserve about ½ cup of the pasta cooking water.
  • Add the mascarpone and slowly melt the cheese into the pepper and onion mixture, adding a little of the reserved pasta cooking water in (if needed) to make a creamy sauce.
    Step 4 - Add the mascarpone and slowly melt the cheese into the pepper and onion mixture, adding a little of the reserved pasta cooking water in (if needed) to make a creamy sauce.
  • Before serving, add one or two handfuls of fresh baby spinach, tossing lightly to combine, and wilt the spinach.
    Step 5 - Before serving, add one or two handfuls of fresh baby spinach, tossing lightly to combine, and wilt the spinach.
  • To serve, divide into bowls and sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan cheese!
    Step 6 - To serve, divide into bowls and sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan cheese!

Nutrition

Calories: 654kcalCarbohydrates: 73.1gProtein: 14.5gFat: 32.8gSaturated Fat: 18.5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1.3gMonounsaturated Fat: 5.2gTrans Fat: 0gCholesterol: 70.9mgSodium: 195.7mgPotassium: 418.7mgFiber: 4.7gSugar: 8.1gVitamin A: 125.1IUVitamin C: 55mgVitamin D: 0µgCalcium: 131.5mgIron: 3.6mg
Keyword Budget Friendly, Eat Your Veggies, Fresh, Meatless, One-Bowl Meals, pasta, quick and easy, Recipes for Beginners, Seasonal Produce, Vegetarian
Tried this recipe?Review it ! Or leave a comment. It’s super helpful for others and us!

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Copyright © 2017-2024 Kymberley Pekrul | GfreeDeliciously | gfreedeliciously.com | All content and photographs are copyright protected. The sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. However, copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited. Please read my Photo Use Policy for detailed guidelines and further clarification.

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Kymberley @gfreedeliciously

Hi, I'm Kymberley, the creator of GfreeDeliciously and the Amazing, Glorious Journey Programs. I pray that my work will inspire you to honor your body through God and Good Food from the inside out, all while enjoying your Amazing, Glorious Journey!

Take a peek at the behind GfreeDeliciously

Being creative, cooking, fresh veggies, the violin, decorating for holidays, sewing, hand-quilting, cowgirl boots, country music, fresh herbs in pots, blowing dandelions to the wind, walking barefoot in the grass, hanging out with eclectic interesting people, reading, writing, warm lazy summer days, and yoga!

Gluten, cilantro, mixed vegetables (the frozen kind I grew up with), negativism, rudeness, narcissism, overstaying a welcome,
not helping out, liars, promiscuity, cockiness, know-it-alls, being overly-dramatic, goal-less-ness, poor hygiene, chauvinism, lacking a sense of humor, excessive competitiveness, Laziness, horrifying spellers, people-bashing, criticism and mockery of others and their beliefs, flakiness (because flaky people are really unappealing), more swagger than substance, people who constantly manage others (those folks who think they have all the answers…)

Lambrusco, my iPad, popcorn suppers, dark chocolate, cookbooks, Almond-Rocca, historical romances, sun-bathing, weekend coffee with a good book in bed, PBS cooking shows, romantic comedies, cozy sweaters, fuzzy socks, and fragrant bubble baths with soft music and wine…

Say please and thank you, LAUGH, Pray often, ENCOURAGE others, Be KIND, HONEST, HAPPY, Keep your PROMISES, Be GRATEFUL, Wash your hands, FORGIVE yourself and others, LISTEN, Have FAITH, Be CONFIDENT, Honor your parents, CHERISH your children and grandchildren, TREASURE your family, ABIDE in GOD’s love, Be POLITE, Guard your HEART, SEEK your purpose, FEED your mind, body and soul, Be HOPEFUL, Resist temptation, Lay your burdens down, TRUST your gut, CONNECT with nature, Know that GOD made you perfect just the way you are, SERVE others, LIVE to love, Be COURAGEOUS, Shine bright, OPEN your mind, RESPECT differences, HONOR your inner hunger, SING loud, Be PROUD of who you are, Practice PATIENCE, Never give up, WEATHER the storms of life, Say I love you, LOVE one another

  • I’ve traveled to 32 states in the USA where I’ve enjoyed the food, history, people and the local culture while visiting.
  • Among the states, I’ve lived in are Arizona, California, Michigan, and Wisconsin.
  • My favorite island is Maui.
  • I’ve also been to Canada and Mexico.
  • I rode horses as a kid, and barrel-raced.
  • I broke my neck when I was 18 and went to senior prom in a neck brace.
  • As a little girl, I grew up living next door to my grandma and grandpa on a small lake in rural southern Michigan.
  • The first thing I learned to cook was pancakes.
  • The craziest thing I ever made was mint-flavored green cupcakes when I was 13. My family didn’t like them much…
  •  

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Coach | Cook | Creator | Publisher

Meet Kymberley [Upson] Pekrul

A professional writer and self-taught Gfree lifestyle expert on [most] gluten-free things, I’ve always loved cooking and creating delicious foods from scratch for myself and those I love.

My journey began when everything I thought I knew about cooking and eating suddenly changed one day when I discovered I was celiac. So, I re-learned how to eat, cook, and navigate through life gluten-free – trusting God and His plan for me.

I live in what’s known as the Holylands of Central Wisconsin. All the recipes you’ll find here are gluten-free and inspired by the people and places I love most. Whenever possible, I cook with seasonal ingredients using whole foods – Making dishes suitable for everyday life and all food lovers gathered at the same table.

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