This quick romesco takes 5 minutes to make, and is the perfect sauce for chicken, steak, pork, potatoes, and vegetables. It’s healthy and full of flavor!
I first fell in love with Romesco when I lived in Spain, and have been eating it ever since. It’s actually one of the oldest recipes on the blog, for this post Roasted Baby Potatoes with Romesco Dip.
While delicious, that version is pretty involved, calling for blackening tomatoes under the broiler, soaking chiles, and a few other steps.
This version on the hand? Crazy easy. And also delicious.
What is romesco?
Romesco is a sauce originating from the Catalonia region of Spain that has a flavor base of primarily peppers and nuts. There are variations in ingredients, for example sometimes people include tomatoes, and bread to thicken, but I also see them left out just as often. Both of those ingredients are in my other romesco recipe, but neither of those are included here, and the spices are different too.
The intention of this romesco is to be delicious, quick, and easy. This romesco is made without bread, but still has a wonderful thickness and creaminess to it. So if you’re eating gluten-free or paleo, this is something you can enjoy.
Sometimes I have a specific plan for the romesco when I make it, but often I’ll make a batch on Sunday for the week ahead, just to have on hand. I’ll add a few spoonfuls to have with fried eggs in the morning, or to have with roasted chicken. I always find uses for it and it has the most wonderful flavor!
Let’s go through the step-by-step process for making it.
Probably the most important part of this romesco is making sure to use good quality roasted red peppers.
I did a taste test once comparing Trader Joe’s jarred bell peppers against the one I usually buy, to see if it was worth switching (the TJ’s one is a lot cheaper).
The answer was a very loud NO. The cheaper ones had no flavor and were mostly scrap pieces (I love Trader Joe’s so much, but not their jarred bell peppers).
So, when you’re shopping at the grocery for roasted red peppers, look for big peppers and marks of quality. It’s important for the sauce! My go-to is Divina brand, which I get at Whole Foods.
Place the peppers in a food processor along with toasted slivered almonds, garlic, smoked paprika, cayenne, salt, olive oil, and red wine vinegar:
Process the mixture for about a minute, until smooth:
You can also make this in a blender. Generally speaking, a blender will give you a smoother romesco, whereas the food processor will give you a chunkier romesco. I honestly like both textures for different reasons.
The romesco can be stored in the fridge for 1 week, and it goes with so many different foods. I love eating it for lunch with slow cooker chicken breast, or dunking roasted broccoli and prosciutto wrapped asparagus into it, among many other things.
For more 5-minute sauce recipes, try my Basil Vinaigrette, Jalapeno Cilantro Sauce or Roasted Red Pepper Sauce. They’re all made in the food processor or blender, and add tons of flavor to various dishes. Enjoy!
- Can you freeze romesco? Yes, it freezes pretty well, especially since there are no herbs. Freeze for two months.
- What does romesco sauce go with? It’s great with chicken of all kinds (like a whole roasted chicken, or chicken breast), steak, pork chops, crispy smashed potatoes, and tons of different vegetables for dunking, like roasted broccoli, asparagus, green beans and more.
- Can I change the nuts? Yes, it’s very common to use hazelnuts with romesco, and it adds a unique flavor.
- How long will romesco keep? For 1 week in the fridge, or 2 months in the freezer.
- 16 oz jar roasted red peppers (12oz dry weight)
- 1/2 cup toasted slivered almonds
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- Place all ingredients into a food processor or blender, and blend until smooth.
- A food processor will make for a chunkier sauce, whereas the blender will make for a smoother sauce.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator for 1 week.