My mom used to make stuffed peppers when I was growing up. I always enjoyed them, although it wasn't until I was older that I learned to appreciate the pepper part of the dish - LOL.
A pan full of yummy goodness!
It's only within the last couple of years that I've started making them for my family -- for no reason in particular, other than... the idea never came up. I think it was my hubby who said, "how about stuffed peppers this week?" -- and I went to my mom for her recipe. I've tweaked it and twisted it a little, and compared it to some other recipes, and came up with my own version. It's become one of our go-to recipes, and I thought I'd share it with you.
For us, there are two critical points:
- that the peppers are cooked and very soft
- that the rice is not overcooked and mushy
4 green bell peppers
1 lb. ground round
2 c. uncooked MINUTE rice
16 oz. tomato sauce*
1 ½ tsp. dehydrated onion (our preference)
1 ½ tsp. chili powder
salt and pepper to taste
* PLUS extra sauce to pour in bottom of dish -- or even just water to help steam-cook the peppers. The size of your casserole will determine how much sauce/water to cover the bottom. I use a 9x13 pan, and use 1-1 ½ cups of liquid in the bottom. TIP: If you use sauce vs. water, you can spoon it over your peppers when they come out of the oven! (yum-O!)
- Brown ground round and drain.
- Prepare rice per instructions on package, but only let it sit to absorb the water for 2 minutes or so. Drain the rest of the water.
- Halve the bell peppers top to bottom, removing core and seeds.
- To a large mixing bowl, add meat, rice, 16 oz. tomato sauce, onion, chili powder, salt, and pepper. Mix well.
- Place *extra sauce/water in bottom of baking pan.
- Add pepper halves, and stuff with meat mixture.
- Cover with foil, and bake at 350F for 45-60 minutes -OR- until peppers are cooked to your liking.
Depending on the size of your peppers, you might end up with extra meat-mixture. I freeze it, and it's ready to go for a small batch of peppers sometime!
And speaking of extras -- this recipe is more than enough for a meal for our family. We have enough for another night -- or for several packed lunches! My hubby and son like to take them to work for a "hot lunch."
Comfort food at it's finest!