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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!
Closeup of Mascarpone & Pepper Penne Pasta in a bowl

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Yields:

Prep Time: 

4 Servings

7 Minutes 

Cook Time: 

23 Minutes 

 

Total Time: 

30 Minutes

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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!

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

Watch #CookingGfreeDeliciously

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We believe cooking should be fun, but we also know it can sometimes be intimidating, especially when cooking gluten-free. That’s why we strive to help home cooks of all levels learn, practice and grow their basic skills through easy (always gluten-free) recipes that help make cooking an enjoyable experience. Follow us on Facebook to be among the first to watch! 

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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.

Here's a Peek at the free Meal Planning Download...

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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

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

And as always, don’t forget to take a picture and tag it #CookingGfreeDeliciously on Instagram. We love seeing what you cook up!

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Closeup of Mascarpone & Pepper Penne Pasta in a bowl

Mascarpone & Pepper Penne Pasta

Kymberley @GFreeDeliciously
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!
5 from 1 vote
Print Recipe
Prep Time 7 mins
Cook Time 23 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 4
Calories 408 kcal

Equipment

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

Ingredients
 
 

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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!

Recipe Notes

GROCERY LIST
RECOMMENDED PRODUCTS
Groceries – Walmart Grocery
Jovial Brown Rice Penne Rigate – Thrive Market
White Pepper (Ground White Peppercorns) – The Spice House
 
PRODUCE
Red Bell Pepper
Yellow Bell Pepper
Yellow Onion
Baby Spinach
Garlic
BREAD/PASTA/RICE/FLOUR
Gluten-free Penne Pasta
MISCELLANEOUS
Olive Oil
White Pepper
Salt
Ground Nutmeg

Nutrition

Calories: 408kcalCarbohydrates: 70.6gProtein: 12.1gFat: 8.5gSaturated Fat: 1.3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1.3gMonounsaturated Fat: 5.2gTrans Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 153.9mgPotassium: 339.6mgFiber: 4.4gSugar: 5.5gVitamin A: 58.6IUVitamin C: 51.1mgVitamin D: 0µgCalcium: 36.5mgIron: 3.2mg
Keyword Budget Friendly, Eat Your Veggies, Fresh, Meatless, One-Bowl Meals, pasta, quick and easy, Recipes for Beginners, Seasonal Produce, Vegetarian
Tried this recipe?Rate it! Or leave a comment. We'd love to know your thoughts!

Recipe Card powered by WP Recipe Maker | Nutrition by NutriFox

(Nutritional values are an approximation. Actual nutritional values may vary due to preparation techniques, variations related to suppliers, regional and seasonal differences, or rounding.)

Copyright © 2017-2020 Kymberley Pekrul | G-Free Deliciously | gfreedeliciously.com | All content, and photographs are copyright protected. The sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. 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

Kymberley @gfreedeliciously

Hi, I'm Kymberley, the creator of G-Free Deliciously 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!

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