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How to Roast Red Peppers 4 Ways (2022)

Learn how to roast red peppers (4 different ways) to get the best sweet, smoky flavor. It’s easy, tasty, and you’ll be hooked. Roast a bunch of bell peppers and freeze the leftovers for up to 6 months.

how to roast red peppers pin

Is it worth the effort to roast your own peppers? Why should you learn how to roast red peppers when you can easily buy them at the grocery store?

If your quest is to eat only the best-tasting roasted red peppers, then you must make your own. 

Looking for the most cost-effective way to get roasted red peppers? Then learn how to roast them yourself.

Roasting red peppers is easy. Wash the peppers and cut them in half. Remove the stem, seeds, and ribs. Then roast them in the oven for 40 minutes. Finish by steaming the peppers and removing their skin. Slice or chop the peppers when they are cool.

Why Do You Roast Peppers?

Roasting is a dry heat method and is key to flavor development. When peppers roast, they begin to brown, and the skins start to char. This is the result of a chemical reaction known as Maillard browning. 

This reaction not only browns food, but also reorganizes the aromatic compounds.

Oven roasting caramelizes the natural sugars in the pepper. This delivers a sweet, smoky, roasted flavor entirely unique from the taste of raw pepper. 

Roast peppers for the incredible taste that only comes from roasting.

What Kinds of Peppers Can You Roast?

You can roast all kinds of peppers. Bell pepper and chili pepper roast well. You will be amazed at how a simple ingredient has so much flavor.

  • Bell Peppers. Any color peppers, including green peppers, yellow peppers, orange peppers, and red peppers, can be roasted. Their bright colors don’t diminish with roasting.

    Red peppers have a natural sweetness lacking in green bell peppers. But all can be roasted.

    Both large peppers and smaller peppers are ideal for roasting. The size of the pepper determines how long it takes to cook.
  • Chili Peppers. Roast poblano peppers, jalapeno peppers, ancho peppers, etc.

How to Make Roasted Red Peppers That Leave You Drooling

Let’s talk about the best techniques to tease out that unbelievable sweet, smoky flavor.

Oven roasting is the #1 recommended method. You can easily roast a large batch of peppers at the same time. And you will love the flavor roasting delivers.

If you go the oven route, here are simple steps to oven-roast bell peppers.

red bell peppers on a cutting board

STEP 1: BRING PEPPERS TO ROOM TEMPERATURE

Take the fresh red bell peppers (or any color peppers) out of the fridge. Bringing peppers to room temperature is an often-overlooked first step that helps the pepper roast evenly.

Don’t worry. You don’t have to set the pepper on the counter and wait. You can continue with the rest of the steps as the pepper warms up from the chilly refrigerator.

Room temperature is about 65-68° F (18-20° C). You don’t need to use a thermometer. Your fingers are adequate. When the pepper goes in the oven, it should not feel like it just came out of the refrigerator (40° F or 4° C).

STEP 2: PREP THE PEPPERS

cut bell peppers on a cutting board
  • CHECK that the red peppers are fresh and free from soft spots or blemishes.
  • SCRUB the pepper lightly with a vegetable scrub brush. Dry the pepper with a couple of paper towels or a clean cloth.
  • CUT OFF the stem and then cut the whole peppers in half on a cutting board with a knife.
  • REMOVE the seeds and ribs.

STEP 3: PREHEAT THE OVEN.

Preheat the oven to 450° F (230° C).

STEP 4: PREP THE PAN.

cut red peppers in a pan waiting to roast

If you have a roasting pan or a grill pan with ridges, your pepper probably won’t stick to the pan.

However, if you think the pepper will stick, you have a couple of options. Brush the pan with a high smoke point oil OR use a nonstick silicone mat. 

  • Option 1: Refined coconut oil, refined avocado oil, and ghee all have smoke points of 450° F (230° C) or higher.

    To reduce the chance the pepper will stick to a rimmed baking sheet, brush the pan with your choice of high smoke point fat.
  • Option 2: Use a nonstick silicone mat on the sheet pan. Most silicone mats are safe up to 480° F (250° C).

Don’t Use These 3 Things When Roasting

Warning: Although some people may recommend aluminum foil, cooking spray, or parchment paper, avoid them (if you can) when roasting bell peppers.

Why? Glad you asked.

  • Do not use a piece of foil. Although it is convenient to use, a 2019 study found that aluminum leaches into food when used in cooking. No thank you.
  • Avoid cooking sprays or nonstick sprays. This includes olive oil spray. These sprays are made with cheap oils that do not have a high smoke point. 

    When oil is heated above its smoke point, it breaks down. This leaves a bad flavor and a difficult-to-clean pan. 

    Some health experts caution that toxic byproducts result from oils heated above their smoke point.
  • Parchment paper can only be heated up to 425° F (218° C) before the paper begins to smoke, brown, and curl. If you must use parchment paper, adjust the oven temperature to 425° F (218° C). Then tweak your cooking time.

STEP 5: ROAST THE PEPPERS.

how to roast red peppers in the oven
  • PLACE the pepper halves in the pan. Face up or face down is fine. You’ll be flipping them over as they roast so they will cook evenly.
  • When the oven temperature is hot enough, PLACE the pan of peppers in the center of the oven.
  • ROAST for 20 to 25 minutes. Then using tongs, flip each pepper over. Continue to roast for 15 to 20 minutes more.
  • REMOVE the peppers from the oven.

STEP 6: STEAM THE PEPPERS.

steaming hot red peppers in bowl with kitchen towel

Steam the peppers for about 10 minutes. Trap the heat in with the peppers to loosen their skin. There are several ways to steam the peppers.

steaming roasted red peppers in bowl with towel
  • Option 1: Put the peppers in a large bowl and cover the bowl with a kitchen towel, plastic wrap, or a plate. You want a closed container.
  • Option 2: Toss the peppers in a brown paper bag and close the bag top.
  • Option 3: Place the peppers on a plate and cover them with a glass bowl. The bowl should be big enough to seal the plate and bowl completely.

Keep the pepper juice that you will find at the bottom of the bowl. Store it with the peppers or use it in any red peppers recipe.

STEP 7: REMOVE THE PEPPER SKINS.

roasted red peppers on a cutting board

When the peppers are cool enough to touch, pull the skin off. It doesn’t take a long time to cool. Often the skins will fall right off. However, for stubborn peels, use a paring knife to remove them.

STEP 8: COOL AND CUT.

  • COOL the peppers before cutting them.
  • CUT the pepper into strips or pieces.

STEP 10: SERVE.

ENJOY in red pepper hummus, red pepper soup, or as a garnish on a soup or salad.

In addition to roasting bell peppers in the oven, you can oven-broil, grill, or fire-roast them.

How to Know When Your Peppers are Finished Roasting? 

Use your judgment and visual cues to determine when the peppers are done. This is essential because the oven is an imprecise source of heat. 

Never rely on a recipe’s timing because oven temperatures and behavior vary widely. Instead, rely on your senses, particularly sight and touch.

The pepper’s skin should be browned or blackened and blistered almost all over. The pepper flesh should be tender but firm. Never mushy.

Keep in mind that larger pieces take longer to cook than smaller ones.

How to Roast Red Peppers by Broiling in the Oven

This easy method takes less time than oven-roasting, and you can still roast many peppers simultaneously.

how to roast red peppers by broiling
  • MOVE the oven rack to the very top.
  • TURN the oven on broil with the temperature 500° F (260° C).
  • PREPARE the broiling pan by brushing it with a high smoke point oil (optional).
  • WASH and cut the peppers and remove the stem, seeds, and ribs. Put the peppers on the broiling pan.
  • PLACE the pan in the oven and broil for 6 to 8 minutes.
  • FLIP the peppers over and roast for an additional 6 to 8 minutes. If necessary, flip the peppers one more time for 3 to 5 minutes. Look for the visual clues the pepper is done (blackened, blistered skin, tender but firm flesh).
  • STEAM, remove skins, cool, and slice the peppers following the detailed instructions listed above.

How to Roast Red Peppers on the Grill

Roasting on the grill takes even less time than using the oven. Plus, it won’t heat up your house. The outdoor grill may be your new favorite way to get smoky sweetness from your peppers.

how to roast red peppers on the grill

Basic Steps:

  • PREHEAT the grill to medium-high heat.
  • WASH and cut the peppers and remove the stem, seeds, and ribs.
  • PLACE pepper skin side down on the grill.
  • CLOSE the lid and roast for 6 to 10 minutes.
  • CHECK for doneness (blackened, charred skins, firm but tender flesh). Roast a few minutes longer if necessary.
  • STEAM, remove skins, cool, and slice the peppers following the instructions listed above.

How to Fire-Roast Red Peppers (on the Grill, Gas Burner, or Campfire)

This method roasts whole peppers without removing the seeds or ribs first. This might be your preferred method if you want the whole pepper intact.

It is more challenging to remove the seeds and ribs from a roasted whole pepper. The pepper will be hot, and the seeds and ribs don’t pull out as cleanly.

  • WASH and dry the pepper.
  • TURN ON the gas flame on the stove top or light the fire.
  • USE TONGS to securely grab the pepper.
  • HOLD the pepper directly over the open flame.
  • ROTATE the pepper, so all sides get charred as evenly as possible.
  • FIRE-ROAST for 6 to 8 minutes.
  • CHECK for doneness (blackened, blistered skin, tender but firm flesh). Roast longer if needed.
  • STEAM, remove skins, cool, and slice the peppers following the simple steps listed above.

The main disadvantage to fire-roasting peppers is that you can really only fire-roast one pepper at a time. It is hands-on and not as convenient as other methods. It can be tiring holding the tongs and awkward trying to turn the peppers with the tongs.

It can also be messy because the juices can drip all over. Not a problem if you are fire-roasting over a campfire. But a big pain if you are roasting with a gas stove.

I don’t find fire-roasting convenient at all.

How to Store Homemade Roasted Red Peppers to Keep Them Fresh Longer

roasted red peppers on a plate

Follow these storage tips to preserve your peppers.

If you use the roasted peppers within three to five days, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

However, for longer storage … say for a week or two, then freeze them.

Freezing roasted peppers is one of the best ways to store them long-term. I recommend roasting several peppers at once and freezing most of them to use later.

How to Freeze Roasted Peppers

strips of roasted red peppers in a bowl
  • After roasting the peppers and removing the skin, COOL them completely.
  • SLICE them or leave them halved.
  • LINE a cookie sheet or plate with parchment paper.
  • PLACE a single layer of roasted red peppers on the prepared sheet.
  • FREEZE the cookie sheet for 1 hour.
  • REMOVE the pan and pull off the sweet red peppers. Place them in a zip-top freezer-safe storage bag.
  • RETURN the bag to the freezer. Freeze for another hour.
  • CRINKLE the bag to make sure the peppers are not sticking together. Return the bag to the freezer and freeze the peppers completely.

Frozen roasted red peppers will stay fresh in the freezer for up to 6 months.

To thaw the peppers, remove the amount you need from the zip-top freezer bag. Place the frozen peppers in the refrigerator for 15 to 20 minutes, or until they have thawed out.

Some recipes don’t even require thawed peppers. Throw them in an omelet or mix them into shepherd’s pie. Add one or two extra minutes to the cooking time.

Other recipes need thawed peppers. Like cold pasta salads, a veggie wrap, or Catalina taco salad.

Roasted Pepper FAQ

How do you remove the skin from roasted peppers?

The skin peel should come off easily if you have correctly steamed the peppers.

Do you have to peel roasted peppers?

You don’t have to peel roasted peppers. However, when peppers roast, their skin bubbles up and blisters. So, it is natural to want to peel the skin off because it has separated from the flesh.

Most roasted bell pepper recipes call for skinless peppers. The texture of peeled peppers is much better for pasta dishes, romesco sauce, and tomato soup.

Can you eat the skin of roasted peppers?

You can eat the skin of roasted red peppers. However, you may not find the skin of pepper very tasty. All the flavor is in the pepper.

What if you can’t get all the skin off?

If some of the skin is difficult to peel off, chances are the pepper roasted unevenly. Sometimes the edges are more well-done, making the skin challenging to remove.

If the skin is stubborn, steam the pepper longer to see if the skin loosens. Or use a paring knife to scrape the skin off the edges.

Delicious Recipes with Roasted Peppers

roasted red pepper hummus with carrot sticks

Now that you know how to roast red peppers, what are you going to do with them? Roasted peppers can be a garnish, the main ingredient, or a side dish.

  • As the main ingredient, make roasted red pepper hummus, roasted red pepper soup, or red pepper pasta sauce. A food processor is a great way to puree roasted peppers for these great recipes.
  • Simple pasta salads include roasted peppers, red onion, balsamic vinegar, black pepper, and sea salt. Easy recipe, right there. Perfect for a quick Sunday lunch.
  • Use the roasted pepper as a serving dish for an omelet or stuffed pepper filling.

With several options for roasting, smart ways for preserving, and countless ways of serving, you are out of excuses. Roast some red bell peppers today. You’ll be hooked.

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Yield: 1 cup

How to Roast Red Peppers For the Best Sweet Smoky Flavor

sliced roasted peppers in a bowl

Learn how to roast red peppers (4 different ways) to get the best sweet, smoky flavor. It’s easy, tasty, and you’ll be hooked. Roast a bunch of bell peppers and freeze the leftovers for up to 6 months.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Steam & Peel 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 2 red bell peppers (or any bell pepper)

Instructions

Oven-Roasted Red Peppers

    1. BRING the peppers to room temperature. Take them out of the refrigerator so they lose their chill and can cook evenly.
    2. SCRUB the peppers lightly with a vegetable scrub brush under running water. Dry with a paper towel or clean cloth.
    3. CUT off the stem and then cut the pepper in half.
    4. REMOVE the seeds and ribs.
    5. PREHEAT the oven to 450° F (230° C).
    6. BRUSH the roasting pan with oil or use a silicone mat if you think the peppers will stick to the pan.
    7. PLACE the peppers in the pan face up or down. When the oven is hot enough, put the pan of peppers in the oven.
    8. COOK for 20 to 25 minutes. Then using tongs, flip each pepper over. Continue to roast for 15 to 20 minutes more.
    9. CHECK the peppers. When they are done, the skin should be blackened, charred, or blistered. The flesh should be tender, but firm.
    10. REMOVE the peppers from the oven.
    11. STEAM the peppers. Put the peppers in a bowl and cover the bowl with a plate or towel. Keep covered for about 10 minutes. This will loosen the charred pepper skin.
    12. PEEL the skins off the peppers when they have cooled enough to touch them. The skin should easily peel off. For stubborn parts of skin, use a paring knife to scrape the skin off. A little skin left on is fine.
    13. COOL the peppers before cutting them.
    14. CUT the pepper in strips or pieces.
    15. ENJOY in red pepper hummus, red pepper soup, or as a garnish on a soup or salad.
    16. STORE in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days.
    17. FREEZE for longer storage. To freeze, line a plate with parchment paper. Place the peppers on the plate in a single layer and freeze for 1 hour. Remove from the plate and place the peppers in a freezer-safe zip-top bag. Freeze for another hour. Crinkle the bag to separate any peppers. Return to the freezer and freeze until solid. Freeze up to 6 months.

Oven-Broiled Red Peppers

  1. MOVE the oven rack to the very top.
  2. TURN the oven on broil. The oven should preheat to 500° F (260° C).
  3. PREPARE the broiling pan by brushing it with a high smoke point oil (optional) if you think the peppers will stick to the pan.
  4. WASH and cut the peppers and remove the seeds and ribs. Put the peppers on the broiling pan.
  5. PLACE the pan in the oven and broil for 6 to 8 minutes. Flip the peppers over and roast for an additional 6 to 8 minutes. If necessary, flip the peppers one more time for 3 to 5 minutes. Look for the visual clues the pepper is done (blackened, blistered skin, and tender but firm flesh).
  6. STEAM, remove skins, cool, and slice the peppers following the same instructions listed above.

Roasted Red Peppers on the Grill

  1. PREHEAT the grill to medium-high heat.
  2. WASH and cut the peppers and remove the stem, seeds, and ribs.
  3. PLACE the pepper skin side down on the grill.
  4. CLOSE the lid and roast for 6 to 10 minutes. Check for doneness (blackened, blistered skin and tender, but firm flesh). Roast longer if necessary.
  5. STEAM, remove skins, cool, and slice the peppers following the same instructions listed above.

Fire-Roasted Red Peppers

  1. WASH and dry a pepper.
  2. TURN ON the flame or light the fire.
  3. USE tongs to securely grab the pepper.
  4. HOLD the pepper directly over the flame.
  5. ROTATE the pepper so all sides get charred as evenly as possible. Hold the pepper over the flame for 10 to 15 seconds before rotating it, so it roasts evenly.
  6. FIRE-ROAST for 6 to 8 minutes.
  7. CHECK for doneness (blackened, blistered skin and tender, but firm flesh). Roast longer if necessary.
  8. STEAM, remove skins, cool, and slice the peppers following the same instructions listed above.

Notes

All images and content are © TheTastyTip.com. If you want to use this recipe and techniques, please take your own photos, write your own description, and link back to this page. Thank you.

Nutrition Information

Yield

4

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 16Total Fat 0gSaturated Fat 0gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 0mgSodium 1mgCarbohydrates 4gFiber 1gSugar 3gProtein 1g

Nutrition information is an estimate only and may vary based on individual ingredients added and cooking methods used.


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