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Quick pasta with portobello mushrooms and green bell peppers

Quick pasta with portobello mushrooms and green bell peppers

I love to make quick pasta packed with veggies and coated with lightened up creamy cheese sauce. I often use spinach and mushroom combination for veggies, and this time I wanted to try a different green vegetable that tends to undeservingly get little attention from me: green bell peppers. I’ve also decided to use large portobello mushrooms which, as you know, are often used as “meat” in veggie burgers. I hoped for portobello mushrooms to add richness and “meatiness” to the meal without actual meat, and I was not wrong: this recipe turned out everything I wanted it to be. Please meet my new favorite pasta dish (with not so original ingredients): pasta with portobello mushrooms and green bell peppers!

Quick pasta with portobello mushrooms and green bell peppers

As you see on the photos, I’ve used small pasta shells here, called Orecchiette Rigate. Interestingly, “Orecchio” means “ear” and “Etto” means “small” in Italian, so translated this pasta is actually called “small ears”, as the shape of these pasta shells can remind you of the shape of small ears. Not to freak you out. Any small pasta shells will work here, but I just love orecchiette! This type of pasta is often used with vegetable sauces, and it worked perfectly here, with creamy cheese sauce coating every single little shell (ear)!

Quick pasta with portobello mushrooms and green bell peppers

Portobellos impart a deep, meaty taste to pasta, releasing juices that make creamy Parmesan sauce more satisfying and deeper in color. Bell peppers add freshness and a bit of crunch. Because of the “meatiness” of portobellos, this quick pasta recipe will appeal to both vegetarians and meat-lovers alike!

Quick pasta with portobello mushrooms and green bell peppers

Prep time: 50 min

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large portobello mushrooms, chopped into small cubes
  • 1 large green bell pepper, cored and cleaned, chopped into small cubes
  • pinch of salt
  • 8 oz small pasta shells, such as Orecchiette
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, for garnish

Makes 4 servings.

1) Heat 2 tablespoosn olive oil in a large skillet, add sliced mushrooms and green bell pepper. Add just a pinch of salt. Cook on high heat for about 5 minutes, stirring. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue cooking mushrooms and bell pepper, covered for about 15 minutes, occasionally stirring.

2) Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain.

3) Add heavy cream, milk, Parmesan cheese and 1/4 teaspoon salt to the mushroom-bell-peper mixture on medium-low heat and mix. Add pasta to the creamy sauce, stir to coat on low heat for about 5-10 minutes until Parmesan cheese melts and starts to coat pasta as well. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

4) Serve on warm plates (warmed in the oven). Garnish with chopped cilantro, if desired.

{ 18 comments… add one }

  • Monique June 15, 2013, 9:49 pm

    Thank you Julia..I am in such a pasta noodles lately..to me ..it’s a complete meal..will try:-)
    Have little ears:-)

  • Angie@Angie's Recipes June 16, 2013, 9:31 am

    This screams FRESHNESS! Looks irresistible, Julia.

  • Anne ~ Uni Homemaker June 16, 2013, 11:47 am

    That looks absolutely delicious! I love mushrooms in pastas. Will be giving this one a try. Thanks for sharing Julia!

  • Deb June 16, 2013, 2:09 pm

    What a scrumptious dinner recipe! I am always searching for new dinner ideas that are flavorful yet quick to prepare!

  • john@kitchenriffs June 16, 2013, 2:42 pm

    I use portobello mushrooms in place of meat all the time – they have such rich flavor! In fact I even make a similar sauce, but one that’s tomato-based. I love the cream one! Definitely something I should try. Good recipe, gorgeous dish. Thanks so much.

  • Denise Browning@From Brazil To You June 16, 2013, 3:31 pm

    This dish looks so creamy and umami. I wish a could have a good portion of it for dinner.

  • Peachy @ The Peach Kitchen June 17, 2013, 9:05 am

    It’s a great idea to add portobello mushroom to avoid meat! gorgeous dish!

  • Ari @ Ari's Menu June 17, 2013, 9:43 am

    Those mushrooms look to die for, and I love how the seasonings are literally jumping off my screen!

  • Mushrooms Canada June 17, 2013, 11:48 am

    In my mind, you can never go wrong with a tasty pasta dish! I love the use of Portabella mushrooms for that added meaty texture. Thanks for sharing!

    -Shannon

  • The Café Sucre Farine June 17, 2013, 3:02 pm

    What a fabulous combination! Love your vibrant photos too, very enticing!

  • Ashley June 17, 2013, 3:19 pm

    I can’t seem to get enough mushrooms lately – and this pasta sound delicious! I love the orecchiette pasta shape – but our local store never seems to have any! Booooo lol

  • Nancy /SpicieFoodie June 17, 2013, 5:40 pm

    I love pasta dishes like this. Thanks so much for sharing your gorgeous photos and scrumptious recipe. I need to give it a go sometime soon.

  • Suzette June 17, 2013, 7:47 pm

    I had no idea what to make for dinner tonight and I came upon this recipe while browsing my pinterest board. I made a few minor modifications because with my husband, I can’t get away with using only 8 oz. of pasta!! ;) I used two (8 oz.) pkgs. of organic sliced mushrooms along with the green pepper and one small sweet onion, diced. I also used one cup of heavy cream and 1/2 cup of (almond) milk. Other than that, I followed everything else exactly. It was easy, quick, and de-lish…definitely a keeper!!! :)

    • Julia June 18, 2013, 7:13 pm

      You’re funny about 8 oz of pasta. :) I do probably need to double my ingredients to correct that: 8 0z does not make enough portions for a family. Very glad that you stopped by and let me know how it turned out.

  • Beth June 20, 2013, 4:38 pm

    Your pasta looks wonderful. No wonder you liked it so much!

  • Patty June 22, 2013, 11:27 am

    Quick pasta for dinner is the best-love portobello mushrooms!

  • Maureen February 19, 2014, 7:15 pm

    I made this tonight and it was delicious! Thanks for a wonderful recipe.

    • Julia February 24, 2014, 3:22 pm

      Maureen, thanks for stopping by and letting me know you liked the dish – so glad you liked it! :)

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