For anyone craving a taste of authentic Italian cuisine without needing to book a flight to Italy, this copycat recipe for Maggiano’s Little Italy Sausage & Peppers is a dish that brings the rich flavors of Italian cooking right to your kitchen. Serve it as an appetizer like they do in the restaurant, or dish it up with a side of pasta or polenta for a full and hearty meal!

Copycat Maggiano Sausage & Peppers vertical shot.

I love the Italian food at Magginao’s – it’s always so fresh and authentic! But when I can’t get to the restaurant, I cook my favorite dishes at home. Maggiano’s Sausage & Peppers is an appetizer that you can easily turn into a meal.

This meaty dish features big, juicy sausage with a great snap, tender-crisp peppers, and a sauce that’s bright, fresh, and lemony. I love serving this with a side of bread for mopping up all the sauce. Or I’ll boil a pot of noodles while the sausage are cooking, and then dinner is served!

Copycat Maggiano Sausage & Peppers on a white plate.

What You’ll Love About Maggiano’s Little Italy Sausage & Peppers

  • It’s meaty, loaded with veggies, and the sauce is so easy and buttery!
  • The combination of spicy or sweet Italian sausage with colorful bell peppers and a creamy, tangy sauce is perfect on it’s own or serve it with pasta for a full meal.
  • It’s customizable – suit your heat preference by choosing between sweet or spicy sausage.

Ingredients

  • Italian sausage – Sweet or spicy.
  • Red onion – Sliced.
  • Garlic – Finely minced.
  • Red bell pepper – Sliced.
  • Green bell pepper – Sliced.
  • Parsley and basil – For garnish, chopped.

For the sauce

  • Chicken broth
  • Lemon juice
  • Cream
  • Butter – Cold, cut into cubes.

How To Make Maggiano’s Little Italy Sausage & Peppers

  1. Cook the sausage in about 1-inch of water in a skillet on the stovetop over medium heat. Cook them until they reach 165-F with a digital meat thermometer. Turn frequently while cooking.
  2. Drain the water from the skillet and add about 1 tablespoon of cooking oil. Brown the sausage on both sides over medium heat. Transfer the browned sausage to a plate and set aside.
  3. In the same skillet and over medium heat, add the onions and garlic, cooking until the onion starts to soften, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add the red and green bell peppers, sautéing until they are tender-crisp. About 2 minutes.
  5. Transfer the veggies to a plate to keep warm and wipe out the skillet.
  6. Add the chicken broth and lemon juice to the skillet, bring to a simmer and reduce by about half.
  7. Add the cream and simmer for 1 minute then turn off the heat.
  8. Leaving the pan on the hot element (if you have a gas stove, leave the skillet on the burner. If you have an electric stove, slide the pan half off the still-hot element), whisk in the very cold butter, a cube or two at a time, until the sauce is thickened.
  9. Season the sauce with salt and pepper then spoon the sauce to the bottom of a serving plate. Arrange the sausage on top, then top with the peppers and onions. 
  10. Sprinkle with the chopped herbs then serve and enjoy!

Step-By-Step Process

Heather’s Tried-and-True Tips

  • You can make this dish in 1 skillet, or start the sausage in a skillet and make the veggies and sauce in another. 
  • Ensure your butter is ice cold, frozen even! Adding cold butter instead of melted butter helps to create a smooth, emulsified sauce that clings to the sausage and peppers beautifully.
  • Depending on your preference for spice, choose either sweet or spicy Italian sausages. I also like to sprinkle some hot chili flakes over the top.

Make It A Meal

Maggiano’s Little Italy Sausage & Peppers is wonderfully hearty on its own, but it can also be part of a more extensive meal. Serve it over a bed of creamy polenta or alongside a crisp, green salad dressed lightly with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. For a heartier option, toss it with your favorite cooked pasta, such as fettuccine or rigatoni, which are excellent for soaking up the sauce.

Copycat Maggiano Sausage & Peppers horizontal shot.

Storage

To store leftovers, allow the dish to cool completely and then transfer it to airtight containers. It will keep in the refrigerator for up to three days.

Vertical shot of Copycat Maggiano Sausage & Peppers.

Copycat Maggiano’s Little Italy Sausage & Peppers

Heather S.
Easy, tasty, and perfect as an appetizer or main dish, this copycat Maggiano's Little Italy Sausage & Peppers is as good – or better – than the real thing!
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 2 servings
Calories 1189 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 3 Italian sausage sweet or spicy
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • ½ red onion sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic finely minced
  • ½ red bell pepper sliced
  • ½ green bell pepper sliced
  • parsley and basil for garnish, chopped

for the sauce

  • ¼ cup chicken broth
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • ¼ cup cream
  • ½ cup butter cold, cut into cubes

Instructions
 

  • Cook the sausage in about 1-inch of water in a skillet on the stovetop over medium heat. Cook them until they reach 165-F with a digital meat thermometer. Turn frequently while cooking.
  • Drain the water from the skillet and add about 1 tablespoon of cooking oil. Brown the sausage on both sides over medium heat. Transfer the browned sausage to a plate and set aside.
  • In the same skillet and over medium heat, add the onions and garlic, cooking until the onion starts to soften, about 2 minutes.
  • Add the red and green bell peppers, sautéing until they are tender-crisp. About 2 minutes.
  • Transfer the veggies to a plate to keep warm and wipe out the skillet.
  • Add the chicken broth and lemon juice to the skillet, bring to a simmer and reduce by about half.
  • Add the cream and simmer for 1 minute then turn off the heat.
  • Leaving the pan on the hot element (if you have a gas stove, leave the skillet on the burner. If you have an electric stove, slide the pan half off the still-hot element), whisk in the very cold butter, a cube or two at a time, until the sauce is thickened.
  • Season the sauce with salt and pepper then spoon the sauce to the bottom of a serving plate. Arrange the sausage on top, then top with the peppers and onions.
  • Sprinkle with the chopped herbs then serve and enjoy!

Notes

Heather’s Tips

  • You can make this dish in 1 skillet, or start the sausage in a skillet and make the veggies and sauce in another. 
  • Ensure your butter is ice cold, frozen even! Adding cold butter instead of melted butter helps to create a smooth, emulsified sauce that clings to the sausage and peppers beautifully.

Nutrition

Serving: 1.5sausageCalories: 1189kcalCarbohydrates: 11gProtein: 27gFat: 117gSaturated Fat: 56gPolyunsaturated Fat: 11gMonounsaturated Fat: 43gTrans Fat: 2gCholesterol: 284mgSodium: 1714mgPotassium: 671mgFiber: 2gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 2900IUVitamin C: 80mgCalcium: 83mgIron: 2mg
Keyword copycat, sausage
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