Quinoa-Stuffed Peppers

Tonight was a another vegetarian recipe success!

I am a big fan of stuffed peppers and usually fill them ground beef and rice. When I saw this recipe I was more than willing to try it, as it contains many ingredients that I already like and well, everything tastes better when baked in a pepper.

I did change the recipe up a little. I did not add the pepper jack cheese into the filling as directed. As a matter of fact, I never even purchased the pepper jack and ended up topping the peppers with a little shredded sharp cheddar I happened to have in the fridge. I also added a pinch of red pepper flakes to the filling while cooking to give it that little kick you would have received from the cheese.

Quinoa-Stuffed Peppers
(courtesy of Vegetarian Times)

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped (1 cup)
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 ribs celery, finely chopped (1/2 cup)
  • 1 Tbs. ground cumin
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (2 tsp.)
  • 1 10-oz. pkg. frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
  • 2 15-oz. cans diced tomatoes, drained, liquid reserved
  • 1 15-oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained (I soaked dry beans instead of using canned)
  • 3/4 cup quinoa
  • 3 large carrots, grated (11/2 cups)
  • 11/2 cups grated reduced-fat pepper Jack cheese, divided
  • 4 large red bell peppers, halved lengthwise, ribs removed

Directions:

1. Heat oil in saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and celery, and cook 5 minutes, or until soft. Add cumin and garlic, and sauté 1 minute. Stir in spinach and drained tomatoes. Cook 5 minutes, or until most of liquid has evaporated.

2. Stir in black beans, quinoa, carrots, and 2 cups water. Cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer 20 minutes, or until quinoa is tender. Stir in 1 cup cheese. Season with salt and pepper, if desired.

3. Preheat oven to 350°F. Pour liquid from tomatoes in bottom of baking dish.

4. Fill each bell pepper half with heaping 3/4-cup quinoa mixture, and place in baking dish. Cover with foil, and bake 1 hour. Uncover, and sprinkle each pepper with 1 Tbs. remaining cheese. Bake 15 minutes more, or until tops of stuffed peppers are browned. Let stand 5 minutes. Transfer stuffed peppers to serving plates, and drizzle each with pan juices before serving.

Calories: 279 Protein: 14g Total Fat: 10g  (if prepared according to recipe)

I hope you enjoy these as much as I did. As always, if you make a variation of this dish I would love to hear about it.
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Filed under Main Course, Recipes

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