Sausage-and-Peppers Pasta with Almond Frico

Sausage and Peppers Pasta with Almond Frico
Photo: Kate Sears
Prep Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
35 mins

Take the classic Italian-American pairing of sausage and peppers and turn it into a fun, fast weeknight dinner. Crumbled spicy Italian sausage and chopped roasted red peppers are combined with orecchiette—the "ear" shaped pasta is perfect for catching the saucy bits. To dress it up, make a quick and crunchy frico with Parmesan and almonds. Lastly, a side of arugula brings a peppery bite along with good-for-you vitamins to the table.


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for skillet and drizzling

  • 4 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated (1cup)

  • cup almonds, toasted and chopped

  • 12 ounces spicy Italian sausage, casings removed

  • 1 jar (12 ounces) roasted peppers, drained and chopped

  • 4 teaspoons sherry vinegar

  • 12 ounces orecchiette

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 2 cups baby arugula


  1. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium 2 minutes; brush lightly with oil. Sprinkle evenly with 1/3 cup cheese and almonds; cook until crisp and browned on bottom, about 2 minutes. Scrape onto a plate; let cool, then crumble. Return skillet to medium-high heat; swirl in oil. Add sausage and cook, breaking up with a spoon, until browned and cooked through, about 6 minutes. Add peppers and 3 teaspoons vinegar; cook 1 minute.

  2. Cook pasta in a pot of salted water 1 minute less than package instructions. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water, then drain. Add pasta and remaining 2/3 cup cheese to skillet; toss to coat, adding enough reserved pasta water to create a silky sauce.

  3. In a bowl, toss arugula with remaining 1 teaspoon vinegar and a drizzle of oil; season to taste. Serve over pasta with frico.

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