Are you looking to start eating better?
I am about to tell you what I think you should have in your fridge at all times when you need a delicious side dish to go with any meal.
This healthy side dish option is so easy to make that anyone can figure it out. What makes it even better is the fact that it tastes really awesome.
It’s sauteed onions and peppers. It’s the perfect side dish for when you want to have something loaded with tons of flavor but at the same time want to eat healthy.
The sweet flavor of the sauteed onions and sweet bell peppers can jazz up even the most boring meals.
Think about that time you were on a weight loss journey and all you were eating was grilled chicken. Imagine if that bland chicken breast was smothered in the sweet flavor of sauteed bell peppers and caramelized onions? That’s a game changer.
There are a few great cooking methods to use when you make sauteed peppers and onions. I am going to teach you what I think is the ultimate peppers and onions recipe.
I promise you, that once you give this onions and peppers a shot, you’ll be making them all the time.
Health Benefits of Sauteed Peppers
There are a lot of reasons to eat peppers that don’t have to do with the taste. The health benefits are huge.
Lose weight, fight cardiovascular disease and feel great by eating peppers and onions? Maybe.
I’m not a doctor, but I’ve read some good things about eating peppers. And if you’re going to eat peppers, why not fry them up with some onions?
Peppers are very nutritious and don’t have a lot of calories. They also have a ton of dietary fiber.
Also, bell peppers are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. And peppers have powerful antioxidants in them too.
There are scientific tests that show a pepper may contain more vitamin C than an orange. Who would’ve thought you could eat a couple Italian sausage and peppers sandwiches for your daily vitamin C dose? I’m in!
Peppers also have vitamin A, potassium and folic acid.
What about lycopene? Peppers are a great source of lycopene. This will help with high blood pressure and heart disease.
Peppers might also be good for your looks! The ferulic acid in peppers is believed to keep your skin looking young and beautiful. Eat peppers… look great!
Why this is my favorite sauteed peppers and onions recipe
I know you’ve had peppers and onions before. I know that it doesn’t really sound like I’m telling you anything new.
But, there are a few reasons why I think this is the best sauteed peppers and onions recipe.
First of all, it’s such an easy recipe to make. You only need a few ingredients that you can find at your local grocery store.
This recipe involves a cooking process that is designed to bring out all of the natural sweetness of the peppers. I’m sure you’ve had sauteed peppers and onions in the past that have been overcooked with a burnt or charred flavor.
You’ve probably also had sauteed peppers and onions where they were undercooked, still crunchy and didn’t have that golden caramelization.
This recipe is the best way to avoid these problems.
Finally, these sauteed peppers and onions are an easy way to always have a great side dish, condiment or appetizer on hand at all times.
When you can’t come up with any good ideas at dinner time, these are perfect in a pinch.
The Main Ingredients
Peppers: you want to choose sweet peppers for this recipe. You have some flexibility when it comes to the peppers you decide to use. I suggest using red bell peppers, yellow bell peppers and orange bell peppers.
I don’t really care for green bell peppers if I have the choice. I think green peppers have a flavor that is stronger and less sweet than the orange peppers, yellow peppers and red peppers.
If I do want to add some green peppers for color, I usually get cubanelle peppers. The flavor is mild and they have a nice thin flesh that sautees up well.
To prepare your peppers, get a sharp knife and remove seeds and the stem of the pepper. Cut peppers into long strips that are about an inch wide.
Onions: you also have a choice of the onions you use. I normally use yellow onions or Spanish onions. You can also use white onions if you prefer. If you have a red onion, feel free to use that for color,
Again, take a sharp knife, peel your onion and slice it into long one inch pieces. Slice them along the grain of the onion.
Olive Oil: I prefer to make this recipe with olive oil because I think it adds some great flavor. If you don’t have olive you can use vegetable oil or canola oil but you probably won’t get the same flavor or health benefits.
Seasoning: to season this sauteed pepper and onion recipe, get some Kosher salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes.
Vinegar: I like using red wine vinegar for this recipe. If you have balsamic vinegar you can use it. It will still taste great.
How To Sauté Peppers and Onions
Here’s what you need to do to make this recipe.
First get a large frying pan and put in your olive oil. For this recipe, put your olive oil in a cold pan and not a hot pan.
Put the pan on medium heat and add the sliced peppers. Season them with salt and pepper.
Allowing the raw bell peppers to start cooking with the oil will avoid burning the outside of the peppers. The peppers will start to cook slowly and the sweetness of the peppers will develop.
If you put the peppers right into the hot oil you won’t get the same end result.
Let the peppers begin to soften up in the pan for about 5 minutes. Stir them and move them around if they start to stick to the bottom of the pan.
When the peppers are starting to get soft, add your sliced onions and turn the pan up to medium high heat. Season the onions with salt and pepper. The onions will start to cook and release moisture into the pan. At this point I like to add an additional small amount of oil to the pan.
Turn the heat down to medium-low heat and cook everything very slowly. The sugars in the peppers and onions will start to develop and the vegetables will start to get very soft. This may take about 20 minutes.
When the onions start to caramelize and the peppers become very soft, the pan might start to lose moisture. If this happens, you can add a tablespoon of water at a time to avoid burning.
Now that the peppers and onions are soft and caramelized, add a tablespoon of vinegar to the pan. Add an equal amount of water. Turn the stove up to medium high heat and let it simmer. Scrape the bottom of the skillet with a wooden spoon to avoid sticking.
When the liquid completely reduces, transfer the peppers and onions to a plate.
I like these the best when they are served at room temperature.
Q: Can these sauteed peppers and onions be frozen?
A: Yes. Store these peppers and onions in an airtight container and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. They’ll be as good as new.
Q: If I like spicy things, can I add hot peppers to this recipe?
A: Yes. If you like the heat, feel free to add your favorite hot peppers. You can add fresh hot peppers like jalapeno or habanero or you can add dried red pepper flakes.
Q: How can I use these sauteed peppers and onions?
A: There are so many ways to use these peppers and onions I could write a book on it. Here are a few of my favorites:
- Toast some baguette slices and make crostini
- Add them to a tomato sauce with sausages and make a cacciatore.
- Make a frittata with eggs and your favorite cheese.
- Top a burger with these beautiful sweet peppers and onions.
- Serve them alongside a big juicy ribeye steak.
- Put them on a pizza!
Q: Can I cook peppers and onions in the oven instead of on the stovetop?
A: Yes. Put them on a sheet pan with olive oil, salt and pepper. You can cook them low and slow in the oven and you’ll get some really great results.