Economical, Tasty, and Adaptable to What You Have on Hand
Overbought at the farmer's market or just need to get some veggies into a hungry family? Stuff some peppers. This recipe uses rice as a base, but you could just as easily use an equal amount of quinoa, barley, couscous or any other cooked grain you have on hand.
Total Time: 40 minutes | Prep Time: 20 minutes | Serves: 4 to 6
- 3/4 cup white rice
- 4 bell peppers
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion
- 1 1/2 cups mixed vegetables (carrots, zucchini, peas, corn, etc.)
- 1 pound ground beef OR 1 14-ounce can white beans
- 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Heat the oven to 400F and prepare a large baking sheet by coating it with aluminum foil.
- Cook the rice according to package instructions.
- While the rice is cooking, slice each bell pepper in half the long way (top to bottom) and remove the seeds. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil over the foil on the baking sheet, and arrange the 8 pepper halves hollow-sides–up on the baking sheet.
- Chop the onion and vegetables. In a large pan, drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil and add the chopped onions and veggies. Sauté over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 10 minutes or until tender.
- In a separate nonstick skillet, cook the ground beef (if using) over medium-high heat. Use a stiff spatula or spoon to break the beef up into pieces. Stir regularly for 5 to 8 minutes, and continue to break up the meat until the beef is completely browned and cooked through.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooked rice, onion, vegetables and either the ground beef or the can of beans, after draining and rinsing. While everything is still hot, mix in 1/2 cup of the shredded cheese, and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Divide the mixture evenly into the 8 pepper halves, packing it down slightly if necessary. Sprinkle the remaining 1 cup of cheese over the stuffed peppers.
- Bake at 400F for 15 to 20 minutes or until the peppers are tender and the cheese begins to turn golden brown.
Carly Schuna has been freelance writing and editing for more than a decade. She enjoys putting a creative spin on pieces from her specialty areas of wellness, food and fitness, working to help people save money while maximizing their health. In recipe developing, she loves finding ways to put a healthy spin on the classics to boost nutrition for the whole family without sacrificing taste.