If you ask several different people about what makes up the best stuffed peppers, you are likely to get a variety of answers.
Some people like the classic ground beef, rice and tomato based peppers that are cooked in a bath of tomato sauce or tomato juice.
And other people like their peppers filled with other types of ingredients such as Philly cheesesteak, taco and even Tex-Mex flavors.
However, if you are wanting the a classic recipe that has the best flavor and texture, this is it! Perfectly cooked peppers that have a delicious and flavorful filling that holds up well when baked.
The Best Stuffed Peppers Recipe
Long grain white rice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Petite diced tomatoes
Dried Italian seasoning
Shredded mozzarella cheese
The first step in making stuffed peppers is to cook the rice according to the package directions.
However, if you have an Instant Pot, I would highly recommend you make Instant Pot Rice. It is quick, easy and you never have to worry about it boiling over the pot. You can even make Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers if you prefer.
Now it is time to prepare the green peppers. However, instead of parboiling the peppers to get them soft, we are going to place them in the oven to soften.
Therefore, preheat the oven to 400°F. Then cut the tops off the bell peppers and remove ribs and seeds.
Find a baking dish that is large enough to fit the peppers so that they don’t fall over. Then fill it with 1/2-inch of water.
Place the peppers upside down in the water and cover with foil. Then place the dish in the oven and bake for 20 minutes.
Prepare the Filling
While the peppers are cooking prepare the stuffed pepper filling. Heat a large non-stick skillet over-medium high heat and add the ground beef to the pan. Cook the meat until half of the beef is no longer pink.
Then add the diced onion to the pan and continue to cook until the beef is cooked and no longer pink.
Next add the minced garlic and cook until garlic is fragrant, approximately 1 minute. Remove the meat mixture from the heat and drain off excess fat.
Then return the meat mixture to the pan and stir in the drained tomatoes. When the rice is finished cooking, add it to the skillet.
Then stir in 1/3 cup of the tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, parsley, dried Italian seasoning and season with salt and pepper to taste.
If your skillet isn’t large enough, you can mix everything together in a large bowl instead.
When you take the peppers out of the oven reduce the temperature to 350°F. Then carefully take the foil off the baking dish and use tongs to remove the peppers from the dish and discard the water.
Pour half of the remaining tomato sauce in the bottom of the dish. Then place the peppers back into the pan and fill each one with the beef filling. Pour the remaining tomato sauce over the top of the stuffed peppers.
Cover with peppers with foil and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes.
Once the cook time is up, carefully remove the baking dish from the oven and uncover. Sprinkle the top of the filling with the shredded cheese.
Return the baking dish to the oven, uncovered. Continue to bake for an additional 20 minutes or until the peppers are tender and the cheese begins to lightly brown on the edges.
Remove the peppers from the oven and sprinkle with the chopped parsley.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you are looking to make this recipe a little healthier, you can definitely use ground turkey or chicken instead of the beef. Just be sure to add a little oil to the pan before browning the meat.
You can use whatever bell peppers that you prefer. Red, yellow, orange and/or green all work well for this recipe. However, try to use peppers that are all about equal in size.
If you have extra stuffed peppers, let them cool completely and place in an air-tight container in the refrigerator or freezer. When you reheat, it is best to cut the peppers in half or into bite size pieces rather than keeping them whole.
This recipe can easily be adapted to be vegetarian or vegan friendly. Simply substitute plant-based ‘meat’ crumbles for the ground beef. Then use a vegan friendly Worcestershire sauce such as Annie’s Brand. And finally, omit the cheese or use Daiya shredded cheese.
Absolutely! Because the rice is cooked when added to the filling, you can use whatever rice that you prefer.
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- 1/2 cup long grain white rice, uncooked
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 large bell peppers
- 1 lb. lean ground beef
- 1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 14 ounce can petite diced tomatoes, drained
- 2/3 cup tomato sauce
- 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 3 Tbsp minced fresh parsley, divided
- 1 1/4 tsp dried Italian seasoning
- 3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C) and cook rice according to package instructions.
- While the rice is cooking cut the tops off the bell peppers and then remove ribs and seeds. In a baking dish large enough to fit the peppers snuggly fill with 1/2-inch of water.
- Place peppers upside down in the water and cover with foil. Bake for 20 minutes to soften the peppers.
- While the peppers are cooking heat a large non-stick skillet over-medium high heat. Add the ground beef to the pan and cook until half is no longer pink. Add the diced onion to the pan and continue to cook until the beef is cooked and no longer pink.
- Add the minced garlic and cook until garlic is fragrant, approximately 1 minute. Remove the meat mixture from the heat and drain off excess fat.
- Return the meat to the pan and stir in the drained tomatoes, 1/3 cup of the tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, cooked rice, parsley, dried Italian seasoning and season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F (177°F). Using tongs remove the peppers from the dish and discard the water. Pour half of the remaining tomato sauce in the bottom of the dish. Then place the peppers back into the pan and fill each one with the beef filling. Pour remaining tomato sauce over the top of the peppers. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.
- Once the cook time is up, remove the peppers from the oven and uncover. Sprinkle with cheese and then return to the oven and bake uncovered for an additional 20 minutes or until the peppers are tender and the cheese begins to lightly brown on the edges.
- Sprinkle with parsley and serve warm.
Use any color of bell peppers that you prefer.
Recipe provided by Make Your Meals
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 405Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 111mgSodium: 638mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 4gSugar: 8gProtein: 39g
Nutritional Information is to be used as a general guideline only . Nutritional calculations will vary from the types and brands of the products used.