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Grilled Peppers With Pesto and Pernod Recipe

Kaili loves to cook—from comfort food to fine cuisine—and was the recipient of a silver medal in a food and wine matching competition.

Delicious Grilled Peppers

The olive oil is almost the best part of this dish! Make sure you have lots of fresh, crusty bread on hand.

The olive oil is almost the best part of this dish! Make sure you have lots of fresh, crusty bread on hand.

Looking for Something Different When Grilling Vegetables?

Then this is the recipe for you.

Easy to prepare, and can be put on the BBQ along with whatever else you are grilling. The pesto in this recipe balances the lovely sweet pepper flavor and the licorice from the Pernod imparts a wonderful taste that makes the oil great for dipping.

Ready? Let's get cooking...

Is This Oil Good for Dipping or What?

Bell or sweet peppers belong to the Nightshade family of veggies. Their cousins are potatoes, eggplants and tomatoes.

Three or four bell peppers is all you need...simple to prepare.

Three or four bell peppers is all you need...simple to prepare.

Do the Colors Make a Difference in the Taste of Peppers?

The short answer is yes.

Green peppers are the least mature of these vegetables, and are harvested before they are ripe. If they are left on the plant, they first turn yellow, and then red.

The yellow and red varieties are fruitier and sweeter, with the red ones being the very best. They don't have that somewhat bitter taste that the immature green ones do.

Remaining on the vine makes the red peppers nutrient powerhouses too. They are loaded with beta-carotene and vitamin C.

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

15 min

40 min

55 min

Serves 4 people as a side dish


  • 1 small green pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 small red pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 small yellow pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 3 or 4 ounces pesto sauce
  • 1 ounce Pernod

Step-By-Step Instructions

  1. Preheat your bbq. If using gas, turn it to high until the temperature is 500°F. If grilling with charcoal, wait until the coals turn gray. Turn the heat down so the temperature remains at between 450°F and 500°F.
  2. Wash the peppers, then slice them into thin strips lengthwise. Place in a bbq-safe roasting pan.
  3. Add the olive oil, pesto sauce and Pernod. You may need to adjust the amounts slightly to get the consistency right...you want enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan and enough pesto to nicely coat the peppers.
  4. Place pan on the bbq and close the lid. Stir the peppers every 10 minutes or so to make sure they are evenly cooked and not sticking to the pan.
  5. They should be done in 30-40 minutes.
  6. Remove to a serving dish or platter. Serve with lots of fresh crusty bread.
  7. Enjoy!

How do I know when they're done?

When the peppers are nice and limp and their tips are turning brown, they are ready to come off the BBQ.

Tips for Making This Dish

  1. The alcohol in the Pernod will burn off during the cooking process. What remains is a slight taste and aroma of licorice.
  2. The peppers are done when they are limp and the tips are turning a little brown.
  3. You can use any prepared pesto sauce or use your own fresh sauce if you have some on hand.
  4. The pan gets a little messy cooking these up, especially if the pesto sauce you use has any cheese in it. The easiest way to avoid cleanup is to use a disposable aluminium roasting pan. If you use a regular pan, soaking it in hot, soapy water makes any cooked-on pesto come away easily.
  5. Make sure you have lots of crusty bread on hand. The oil takes on the flavors from the pesto, sweet peppers and Pernod, and is great for dipping. Almost a meal by itself!
These peppers are great with red wine

These peppers are great with red wine

Wine Pairings

Red wine works really well with these BBQ peppers. A lighter Cabernet Franc will work well with this dish, matching the sweet pepper flavor. A nice one to try is from Peller Estates. The hints of tobacco, violet, and oregano really are a great pairing for this dish.

You could also try something that is more fruit-forward. Bigger reds that work well with this dish include California Zinfandel and Australian Barossa Valley Shiraz.

© 2016 Kaili Bisson


Kaili Bisson (author) from Canada on October 02, 2016:

Hi Rajan,

No need to worry about the oil at our age :-) I use good quality olive oil, which is a big part of the "Mediterranean diet." Dipping bread is one of my guilty pleasures in life!

Rajan Singh Jolly on October 02, 2016:

The dish looks good just worried about the quantity of oil, at my age lol! But I'm sure it would be very flavorful and having a few bites of bread dipped in it would feel heavenly.

Thanks for sharing.

Kaili Bisson (author) from Canada on August 30, 2016:

Hi Vespa and you are welcome. Be sure to have lots of crusty bread for dipping!

Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on August 30, 2016:

Wow, this sounds delicious, just the kind of thing we like to prepare and eat. I have almost all the ingredients, except the Pernod. We can get an anise liqueur made here in Peru. I'll have to try that. Thank you for this delicious recipe!

Kaili Bisson (author) from Canada on June 19, 2016:

Hi Deb, give this a try and let me know what you think. It is a great way to use up peppers that are a little past their prime too :-)

Kaili Bisson (author) from Canada on June 19, 2016:

Hi Peggy, I'm not sure what else would work as I have only ever tried Pernod. If it is a licorice flavor you want, Sambuca might work. Peppers have a fairly strong flavor, as does pesto (herbaceous), so it would need to stand up to both of those. We have also done peppers this way without the Pernod but adding a whole, thinly sliced Vidalia onion...very good, but not as good as with Pernod :-)

Deb Hirt on June 18, 2016:

Peppers are one of my favorite veggies!

Peggy Woods on June 13, 2016:

This really sounds good. I love peppers and also pesto. Not sure about that liquor but I'll bet other types could be used as well. Correct?

Kaili Bisson (author) from Canada on June 09, 2016:

Hello teaches, so nice to see you again :-)

Please, do give this a try and let me know what you think. The oil is just amazing.

Dianna Mendez on June 09, 2016:

I love peppers and this recipe is one I know I will enjoy. Colors do make a difference, don't they? I can just taste it now!

Kaili Bisson (author) from Canada on June 07, 2016:

Hello Anca-Elena, you are so welcome...I hope you enjoy them!

Alina-Cristina from London on June 07, 2016:

Sounds delicious! I will have to try this one. Thank you!

Kaili Bisson (author) from Canada on June 07, 2016:

Hi Alicia,

I'm so glad you found this interesting. These grill up nicely, but you can also do them in the oven as well.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on June 07, 2016:

I've never seen a recipe like this before, either. It sounds very tasty. I have to admit that I didn't know what Pernod was before I read this hub, so the article was educational for me as interesting!

Kaili Bisson (author) from Canada on June 07, 2016:

Hello Chitrangada,

You are so welcome! Please give it a try and let me know what you think.

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on June 07, 2016:

This is something new and I haven't come across such a recipe earlier!

Looks interesting and I would love to try it.

Thanks for sharing!

Kaili Bisson (author) from Canada on June 06, 2016:

Hello Flourish and thank you. Please let me know if your Dad likes this...the oil is just so yummy!

FlourishAnyway from USA on June 06, 2016:

Now this is a really nice recipe worth trying! Well written and so tempting. I'm sending it to my dad who loves to experiment with recipes.

Kaili Bisson (author) from Canada on June 06, 2016:

Hi Faith and you are welcome! I just love to grill stuff...we do just about everything on the grill during the summer.

Faith Reaper from southern USA on June 06, 2016:

Yummy, time to fire up the grill! I love peppers and thank you for explaining the different colors and their tastes. Summer is a great time to grill and use fresh veggies, especially.

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