Braised Chicken Sausage with Red Bell and Peppadew Peppers

Almost everything that is tomato based is comfort food to me, and that’s exactly what I was craving last night. I was in luck because the folks at Tuttorosso tomatoes recently send me a gift basket of canned tomatoes to try out and review.

Now that I’m unemployed and working with a much stricter food budget, cleaning out my pantry and making sure I use up all the food I buy before it goes bad has been a top priority. I’ve been doing a lot of “iron-cheffing” dinner lately. In addition to those tomatoes, I had a bunch of red bell peppers that were about to go bad, and an enormous stockpile of pasta in the pantry. When I think of peppers and tomatoes, I think Italian sausage and peppers.

I tried to make this dish a little healthy by using chicken sausage (Whole Foods spicy Italian chicken sausage is my go-to). As I was walking through the grocery store, I was trying to think of something to make this dish a little more special and flavorful. That’s how the peppadew peppers ended up in my basket. Peppadews are a sweet, slightly spicy pickled pepper. I find them a little strong on their own, but I thought they’d give my tomato sauce a wonderful tang and a little extra sweetness.

The sauce turned out beautifully. I used Tuttorosso’s crushed tomatoes with basil, which were incredibly sweet on their own. The spicy sausage and pickled peppers balanced out the sweetness. This recipe makes more sauce than you’ll probably need for the sausage, but I guarantee it won’t go to waste. It’s great over pasta without the sausage even, and it was delicious on my eggs this morning.

Braised Chicken Sausage with Red Bell and Peppadew Peppers

Braised Chicken Sausage with Red Bell and Peppadew Peppers

Ingredients (3-4)

  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 4 small red bell peppers, thinly sliced
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 6 spicy peppadew peppers, minced
  • 1 1/2 lbs. Italian chicken sausage
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 21 oz. Tuttorosso crushed tomatoes with basil (or about 3/4 of a can)
  • Fresh basil leaves
  • Pasta, for serving
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a dutch oven or high-sided skillet. Add the onions and peppers, seasoning with a pinch of salt. Cook until starting to soften, about 8 minutes.

Add the garlic and peppadew peppers. Cook until the garlic starts to soften, about 2 minutes.

Raise the heat to medium-high. Make some room in the middle of the pot and add the sausages, making sure they are sitting directly on the bottom of the pot. Cook for a couple of minutes on each side, or until browned.

Add the chicken stock. When the stock is reduced, add the tomatoes. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat. Simmer uncovered for about 20 minutes, flipping the sausages halfway through, until the chicken sausage is cooked through. Test for seasoning and add salt and pepper if necessary.

Braised Chicken Sausage with Red Bell and Peppadew Peppers

Serve atop pasta (or anything, really) and garnish with basil leaves.

I also wanted to pass along that Tuttorosso is running a Facebook promotion for the next couple of weeks. They’re giving away daily prizes like Rachael Ray stock pots, Wustof knives, Good Grips garlic presses, and more. Check out their Facebook page for instructions on how to enter.

What are your favorite ingredients to add to tomato sauce?

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