Fried Peppers (Peperonata)

Fried peppers or peperonata.
Fried peppers or peperonata.

Fried Peppers (Peperonata) are an Italian American staple and for good reason; they are tasty, very versatile as a side dish, and straightforward to prepare.

Our version can be made with friarelli (at times refereed to as green frying peppers) or standard bell peppers.  If you opt for the ladder, red and yellow bell peppers tend to be sweeter in flavor.  Moreover, buying local or organic peppers will also enhance the flavor of the end product.  Finally, note there are many variations on this dish including adding tomatoes, potatoes, hot pepper flakes, etc.

Fried Peppers (Peperonata)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Classic fried peppers
Serves: 3-4
  • 4-5 medium sized bell peppers or friarelli/green frying peppers (avoid green bell peppers if possible)
  • 1-2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 medium sized onion
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
  1. Cut the pepper into 1.5 inch square pieces making sure to remove any of the tough interior membrane of the pepper. Add the peppers, diced onions, minced garlic, and olive oil to a large frying pan. Cook at medium to low heat and stir often.
  2. The cooking process should more akin to slow roasting than actual frying, so the cooking process may take 25-30 minutes depending on the amount and size of the peppers/onions. Add Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (and red pepper flakes, if you like spice) about half way through the cooking process and mix well.
  3. Towards the end of the cooking process add two tablespoons of decent quality balsamic vinegar (look for a version without caramel flavorings and some form of aging); please do not use Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale if you're lucky enough to have a bottle in your pantry.
  4. Mix well and serve along side most any meat and even a slice of pizza or two!


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