Veggie Packed Stuffed Pepper
This is kind of embarrassing, but I have never made a stuffed pepper before. Yikes, I know! What kind of dietitian recommends them but has never made them? So, I decided to go out on a limb, take my own advice, and try a new recipe with some healthier swaps. The verdict: 3 out of 5 of us gobbled them up... SO GOOD! The 2 picky eaters tried it, them politely declined and ate their raw pepper strips and cheese. Ya can't please them all!
So, here is what I did to make them a little healthier. I started with a lean ground turkey. I love the 93% lean turkey because it has just enough fat left for it to have some flavor with out being overly dry. And when I'm mixing it in with other ingredients, I feel like I can go a little leaner without sacrificing much. It totally worked for these peppers.
Next was incorporating cauliflower rice. I used half brown rice and half cauliflower rice. No one even knew there was cauliflower in the pepper filling. They only saw the brown rice. So that was an easy win!
They also looked really nice and colorful which always helps with kids trying something new.
So here is the recipe. Let me know if you try it and if you use anything else in the filling!
5-6 Peppers, varied in color
1 lb lean ground turkey (I like 93/7)
1 cup cooked brown rice
1 cup cooked cauliflower rice
1/2 can of crushed tomato (I only used half of a 15 oz can because I didn't want the filling to be too runny. If you love the tomato flavor, by all means, use the whole can! If you're using half, then freeze the other half for next time.)
1 tsp minced garlic
1 small onion, diced (or half of a large onion - freeze the other half for next time!)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 cup of cheddar cheese, shredded
1 Tbsp olive oil
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease the bottom of a baking dish. Set aside.
Prep the peppers: Cut off the top of the peppers and deseed. Boil the peppers in water for about 5 minutes to soften. Dry on paper towel and place in baking dish.
Make the filling: heat oil in saute pan. Add onion and saute for 3 minutes or until onion is translucent. Add garlic and saute for 1 more minute. Add tomato, brown rice, cauliflower rice, salt, pepper, and 1/2 cup of cheese. Mix together until well combined and heated through.
Add filling to peppers.
Bake for 20-25 minutes. Remove baking dish, top the peppers with the other 1/2 cup of cheese, and return to oven for another 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
Serve and enjoy :)
**On the All Food Fits Plan, one pepper would count as 3 protein and 1 vegetable**