I am always trying to change up my classic dinner recipes for something different. I have been meaning to try a stuffed pepper recipe for a while and finally got around to documenting it! Before I went vegan, I was SUCH a picky eater. I hated peppers. Like, could not even stand the smell.
When I visited Ireland with my best friend Tia last year, that’s when my taste buds changed. Traveling in another country can be a stressful situation, especially when you have dietary restrictions. Having said that, I had no choice but to eat whatever I could find on the menus that fit my diet. The first time since I was a kid that I had attempted to stomach peppers was in Ireland. I ordered a veggie stir-fry (I’ll create a post about my Ireland trip at some point) and was in heaven! Peppers are SWEET?! Who knew.
My horizons had been greatly expanded; since then, I have consistently added peppers to my meals whenever I can. Hence, the stuffed pepper recipe was born! Kind of a late bloomer you could say…The recipe is super easy and takes about 30min to make and 25min to cook. I bought a tri-package of bell peppers at the store, but you can double up this recipe for a family meal!
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
3-4 Bell Peppers (depending on size)
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1/2 c Quinoa (uncooked)
2 cups Organic spinach
1 can black beans (rinsed & drained)
1 tsp Cumin
1 tsp Paprika
1 tsp Garlic salt (or add minced garlic if you have some with salt to taste)
1/2 tsp Cayenne
Red pepper flakes as desired
- Pour 1 Tbsp of olive oil into the pot and add dry quinoa. Toast for a couple minutes before adding the water.
- Cook quinoa as directed. I used Organic white quinoa from the store, but Bob’s Red Mill and Ancient Grains are usually my go-to brands. I always end up with less water than I need to finish cooking the quinoa so be mindful of the directions! If your directions say 1-2, quinoa to water, I add another 1/4 cup of water.
Note: Make sure you turn down the heat and simmer the quinoa with a lid on the pot after the water boils. Otherwise, you’ll end up burning the quinoa to the bottom of the pan.
- While quinoa is cooking, hollow out your peppers.
4. After the quinoa has cooked completely, keep the stove on low heat and add spices: cumin, paprika, garlic/salt, cayenne, red pepper flakes.
5. Drain black beans, rinse, and add to pot.
6. Stir in spinach and let wilt putting the lid back on the pot.
7. Take a spoonful of quinoa stuffing and press into the sides of the peppers working your way around the inside until they are full to the brim!
8. Cover with tin foil and cook peppers for 25min.
9. If meal prepping, uncover the tops of the peppers and let sit on stove to cool.
10. Save for lunch tomorrow and enjoy hot or cold!
This lunch or dinner is packed full of fiber, protein, vitamins & greens! I prefer quinoa to brown rice in this recipe because 1 serving of quinoa (1/4 c uncooked) contains 6g of protein. Plus, quinoa is a complete protein source for vegans containing all 9 essential amino acids.
Keep your meals colorful by cooking with whole foods (not skittles). Serve with chips and salsa for a complimentary side. Enjoy!