Stuffed peppers are great – they look fancy but are easy to make, there are many ways to make them so you don’t get bored, and it’s like natural portion control (if you stick to one or two pepper halves).
Bell peppers usually are not expensive, so they are a great way to add color and nutrition to your plate.
If needed, they can be modified to be vegetarian – just add hearty veggies or beans or even tofu in place of the meat. You may also replace quinoa with rice or use other vegetables to take away the grains altogether. See, so many ways to make these! No excuses for picky eaters or those with dietary restrictions.
- 2 bell peppers (any color) - you may want to get extra in case you have extra filling left over
- ½ cup quinoa
- ½ lb lean ground beef
- ½ cup shredded carrots
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- Shredded cheese (optional for topping)
- Prepare quinoa per cooking instructions provided on package. I strongly suggest using low sodium chicken or vegetable stock instead of water. This helps quinoa become more flavorful.
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- Brown ground beef in a skillet and drain the fat.
- Add diced onion to skillet and cook until onion is browning (3-5 minutes).
- Add carrots, chili powder, and garlic powder and cook until carrots are soft (about 5 minutes).
- Turn heat off and add the quinoa to the skillet. Mix until it's evenly combined.
- Wash and halve each pepper, removing all the seeds.
- With the cut side down, bake the peppers for about 15 minutes in a large baking dish on the middle rack. (You can do this step as soon as the oven has preheated).
- Remove from oven and fill peppers with quinoa mixture.
- Cover baking dish with foil and bake for about 30 minutes.
- If you choose to top these off with cheese, add it at the end and bake again until cheese is melted.