A quick and easy sauce recipe that is both savory and sweet, made with roasted red bell pepper, tomato, honey, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar and seasonings. It's an all-purpose sauce that can go on practically anything.
I love this sauce. It a simple thing, really, sort of an amalgamation of other sauce I've made in the past, a result of some experimentation and testing as I sought to learn what balance of both sweet and savory I might prefer in a roasted red pepper sauce.
This is the result.
First thing, though - let's talk about roasted red pepper sauces in general. The way I see it, a good roasted red pepper sauce can easily replace a tomato sauce in many recipes. Pizza sauce? Absolutely. Pasta sauce? Heck yeah. Soup base? Yes! The mighty red bell pepper can easily take the place of tomatoes in specific sauce applications and do a bang up job in the process. I find that I typically prefer a roasted red pepper base sauce over tomato because, well, you know, I AM crazy for chili peppers.
Did you know this?
To put it simply, red bell peppers ROCK. They may have no heat, but they are so perfectly fleshy and meaty and satisfying. A single pepper will round out a thick sauce ready to cling to the main dish, and it can be seasoned in any number of ways, all up and down the spectrum, from deliciously sweet to deeply savory.
This particular sauce works in the sweetness in the form of both honey and brown sugar. Honey and brown sugar are popular ways to sweeten recipes, particularly barbecue sauces, which I have also been experimenting with. As I was working on one particular barbecue sauce recipe, I wondered how the ingredients would work with a roasted red pepper base and not much else, and am happy to report that it works very nicely.
The resulting flavors are definitely sweet, but not TOO sweet, definitely leaning toward savory.
You'll achieve a good balance of flavor with the addition of apple cider vinegar, which adds, for me, the right amount of tanginess, along with some of my preferred seasonings here, in this case, cayenne, Mexican oregano, and a bit of cumin. And salt and pepper, of course.
Serving Suggestions for Sweet Roasted Red Pepper Sauce
Yes, the obvious question - what exactly can I serve this sauce with? Truly, this is an all-purpose sauce recipe that can be served with many a dish. You can serve this as a dipping sauce with some crusty bread and treat it like an appetizer. Consider it for a sweeter version of your favorite pasta, but one of my favorite ways to serve this is over savory waffles for brunch. I LOVE savory waffles, and brunch often calls for just a touch of sweet. When it comes to breakfast and brunch, I lean towards savory, though a bit of sweetness is always a pleasant thing.
This sauce will hit both spots for you. I do hope you enjoy it! Let me know your thoughts!
For your reference: How to Roast Peppers.
Sweet Roasted Red Pepper Sauce – Recipe
- 1 roasted red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 Roma tomato, chopped
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Add all ingredients to a food processor and process until smooth.
- Transfer to a small pot and heat. Simmer for 10 minutes to allow the flavors to develop.
- Cool and serve.
Makes about 1 cup.