Lightened Up Stuffed Peppers

One of my mom’s go-to meals was the stuffed pepper. You can stuff the pepper with anything, especially left overs. You can make taco peppers, pasta peppers, even veggie peppers. This is my lighted up recipe of the classic stuffed pepper.

Instead of ground beef, which has a lot of calories and is greasy, I use ground chicken (but you can also use ground turkey). I also use brown rice. My hubby just bought me my first rice cooker and it’s a game changer!!! Check out my rice cooker on my Kitchen Toys page.

The basic premise of the stuffed pepper is to cut open bell peppers, fill it with meat and rice (and I add a veg) or stuff it with whatever you have, cook it and top it with tomato sauce and cheese. I use thin sliced provolone cheese, but again – make it your own! You can add some onions (didn’t have any that night – sigh), some carb or filler (rice, pasta or even cauliflower rice), some veg to sneak in the good stuff, ground or minced meat (totally optional), sauce, and cheese. And that’s it. The variety is endless! Think of it like this, you can make a stuffed pepper with a bell pepper and a left over fast-food burger with a few touches. But less keep this recipe light. Here’s what to do…

Prepare the brown rice (see my rice cooker recipe), and set aside to keep warm. This takes about 70 mins.

Cut the tops off the peppers and then cut them in half. NOTE: If you like making homemade chicken stock, keep the tops of the peppers for free stock. Scoop out and discard the seeds and ribs. Place them in a bowl (that has a top) cut side up. Fill the peppers with water (so they don’t float), then fill the pot with water to cover the peppers. Cover and bring to a boil, then lower the heat to medium-high, and cook the peppers for 10-15 mins, until tender.

Prepare a bowl with ice water. Take the peppers out of the pot of water with tongs and place them in the ice water to stop the cooking process and cool them for a few minutes. Discard the water from the pot and set aside to dry. Once the peppers are cooled, take them out of the ice water and set them aside on paper towels. Don’t leave them in the ice water or they will get water logged.

In the same pot you cooked the peppers, heat the pan and add a tablespoon of Olive oil. Add the ground chicken and a sprinkle of salt, also add a tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce (optional) and brown until almost fully cooked.

Cut up broccoli into very small florets and add them to the chicken, mix and cook 1 min. Mince 1-2 cloves of garlic, add it to the chicken, mix and cook for 30 seconds. Add a couple of tablespoons if water and cover the pot to steam the broccoli. Cook for 3 mins until the broccoli is soft.

Take off the heat and add half of a can of small tomato sauce, teaspoon of Italian seasoning, can of diced tomatoes, and the rice to the chicken and mix. Salt and pepper to taste.

Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a glass baking dish with spray oil. Roll up some tinfoil and put it in the middle, longway, to keep peppers from going flat. Place the peppers on either side of the tinfoil, cut side up, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Over stuff the peppers with the chicken by pushing down the chicken rice into the crevices, then add more chicken rice on top of that. Pour the rest of the tomato sauce over the chicken rice.

Cook for 10 mins. Cover the peppers with thin provolone cheese and melt the cheese for a few mins. Remove from the stove, top with minced parsley and serve warm. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 4 – 6 bell peppers
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 pound ground chicken (or ground turkey)
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce (optional)
  • 1 cup chopped broccoli florets
  • 1 – 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 small tomato sauce
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 4 – 6 slices thin provolone cheese (or cheese of choice)
  • 1 – 2 tbsp minced parsley (optional)

Equipment:

  • Pot with lid
  • Bowl for ice water
  • Knife
  • Tongs
  • Paper towel (or clean dish towel)
  • Glass baking dish
  • Tinfoil

Prep time 10 minutes
Rice time 70 minutes
Chicken/Peppers 40 minutes
Total time 50 minutes up to 2 hours

***save time by making the rice and the chicken/peppers at the same time***


Directions:

  1. Prepare the brown rice (see my rice cooker recipe), and set aside to keep warm. This takes about 70 mins
  2. Cut the tops off the peppers and then cut them in half
  3. Scoop out and discard the seeds and ribs
  4. Place them in a bowl (that has a top) cut side up
  5. Fill the peppers with water (so they don’t float, then fill the pot with water to cover the peppers
  6. Cover and bring to a boil, then lower the heat to medium-high, and cook the peppers for 10-15 mins
  7. Prepare a bowl with ice water
  8. Take the peppers out of the water with tongs and place them in the ice water to stop the cooking process and cool them
  9. Discard the water from the pot and set aside to dry
  10. Once cooled, take the peppers out of the ice water and set them aside on paper towels
  11. In the same pot you cooked the peppers, heat and add a tablespoon of olive oil
  12. Add the ground chicken, sprinkle of salt and a tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce (optional) and brown until almost fully cooked for about 5 minutes
  13. Cut up broccoli into very small florets and add them to the chicken, mix and cook 1 min
  14. Mince 1-2 cloves of garlic, add it to the chicken, mix and cook for 30 seconds
  15. Add a couple of tablespoons if water and cover (to steam the broccoli). Cook for 3 mins until the broccoli is soft.
  16. Take off the heat and add half of a can of small tomato sauce, teaspoon of Italian seasoning, and can of diced tomatoes and mix.
  17. Add the rice to the chicken and mix.
  18. Salt and pepper to taste.
  19. Preheat oven to 350°
  20. Spray a glass baking dish with spray oil
  21. Roll up some tinfoil and put it in the middle, long-way, to keep peppers from going flat.
  22. Place the peppers on either side of the tinfoil, cut side up, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  23. Over stuff the peppers with the chicken
  24. Pour the rest of the tomato sauce over the chicken
  25. Cook for 10 mins
  26. Cover the peppers with the thin provolone cheese, melt cheese for a few mins
  27. Remove from the stove, top with minced parsley and serve warm
  28. Enjoy!

Let me know if you make this recipe, and please join my blog! Happy cooking!!!!

2 thoughts on “Lightened Up Stuffed Peppers

  1. Hi Maureen! how are you??  My neighbor is Thia and she cooks everything in a rice cooker.  She even frys fish in it.  Good to hear from you.. BGS misses you. 🙂

    Like

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