Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Gluten-Free, Vegetarian Recipe: Stuffed Bell Peppers

You know how things like pasta, omelettes and baked potatoes can be used as a base for random but delicious concoctions made of leftover bits and pieces? Well, apparently stuffed peppers are the same way.

I used what I had on hand for these after getting inspiration from a couple of different recipes, and they turned out awesome. They're also super healthy. This easily made enough for 4 and perhaps 6 bell pepper halves. Here's what I ended up using:

- 2 red bell peppers
- 1/2 cup of (uncooked) quinoa 
- 1 13.5 oz. can of cooked spinach
- 1 15 oz. can of black beans
- 2 small-medium tomatoes
- Approx. 1/4 cup diced roasted poblano peppers
- Approx. 1 cup shredded Mexican cheese blend
- 1 cup (organic low-sodium) vegetable broth + 1/2 cup water
- Garlic and cumin powders to taste
- A few tablespoons of (garlic and rosemary-infused) olive oil

First, rinse and drain all of your veggies and the quinoa. Dice the tomatoes and process any other vegetables you're using. This includes slicing the peppers in half (retaining the stems for presentation) and hollowing them out.

Swirl your olive oil around in a saucepan over medium heat and sautee fresh minced garlic, onions, and any other veggies you may be using that need extra cooking time. If you're not using anything I didn't, simply toss in the quinoa when it's been thoroughly drained, along with the garlic and cumin powders, and stir.

Drain the black beans and be sure to drain the canned spinach well. Add these, the tomatoes, peppers, any other veggies you're using, the water and vegetable broth. Stir well, cover and let simmer over a low heat until the quinoa has absorbed all the liquid.

Preheat your oven to 350. Stir the cheese into the veggie-quinoa filling and generously stuff your bell pepper halves. Careful while holding them: they're not going to protect your hands from the hot filling. 

Place them onto a roasting or baking pan and fill it with water, about halfway up the sides of the peppers. Bake for 1 hour. Sprinkle with more cheese, green onions, salt, etc. before serving. 

I served mine with boiled fingerling potatoes with a little melted butter and garlic salt. -drool-

(Originally published 3.21.12)

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