Here’s another fun appetizer/finger-food for tailgate parties or potlucks. Stuffed peppers are oh-so healthy and take advantage of harvest’s beautiful bell peppers. With this recipe I thought it would be fun to use baby bell peppers that are so popular. It takes a little extra time to cut each baby pepper, but the results create a pop-in-your-mouth wholesome dish that is unique and flavorful.
What I love about stuffed peppers is that they are a meal-in-one with protein coming from the turkey, beans, cheese and quinoa plus the benefits of high anti-oxidants from the peppers, tomatoes, chilies, onions and garlic. For a short-cut you could use prepared taco seasoning in place of the spices.
Bell peppers are super rich in vitamin C and the yellow/orange/red varieties boast more vitamin A too! These two vitamins are high in anti-oxidants which help to fight free radicals which float around in the blood vessels wreaking havoc on the inner linings. Free radicals are produced from a variety of sources, including environmental contaminants, smoking, but can also be produced from eating processed, high sugar, low nutrient-dense foods. You can fight back with a dish like this that is loaded with protective perks!
- Southwestern Stuffed Baby Bell Peppers
- 1/2 pound 99% fat-free ground turkey
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes (with juice)
- 1 (4-ounce) can mild diced green chiles with juice
- 1 Tbsp chili powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- 1 1/2 cups shredded Mexican cheese (I use Tillamook Mexican 4-cheese blend), divided
- 15-20 baby bell peppers, tops removed, cut in half, seeded and membranes removed
- Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Brown turkey in large skillet placed over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic; cook and stir for 3-4 minutes or until onions are soft and translucent. Add black beans, tomatoes, chiles, chili powder, cumin and salt; bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes until most of the liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Add cooked quinoa and 1 cup cheese and stir to combine.
- Stuff each baby pepper with a large spoonful of filling, pushing down to tightly fill. Place on baking sheet and cover with foil. Bake for 30 minutes or until peppers are soft and can be pierced easily with a fork. Remove foil and top with remaining 1/2 cup cheese and bake for an additional 5 minutes or until cheese is melted. Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve immediately.
You may end up with some extra filling, so store it in your refrigerator for three to four days and use it in tortillas or on top of mixed greens for a quick, last-minute meal.