Sunday, December 10, 2006

Southwestern Stuffed Peppers Recipe

It's time to stop celebrating how young I used to be and get back to cooking around here. (I'm including that link just to show how much I love Rand even if he does abuse my Blogger password!) This is a very yummy recipe I made several weeks ago when I had a big package of peppers from Costco. I used red and orange peppers, but you can use any color. I believe these peppers may have been the beginning of my black bean obsession of recent weeks. You can follow that link if you want more ideas for using nutritious black beans. In the photo above I cut one of the peppers in half so you could see more of the filling, which might be a nice way to serve them.

If you're following the South Beach Diet, it's important to use Uncle Ben's Converted Rice in this if you want the lowest glycemic index type of white rice. Basmati is second best, for anyone who's wondering, or you could also use brown rice which is great for South Beach.

I've made stuffed peppers many times when I either parboiled the peppers or pre-cooked them in the microwave, but this time I stuffed them raw and I've decided I prefer that method, which keeps the peppers a bit more crisp. I froze several of these peppers, and they were great when I thawed them overnight in the refrigerator and then microwaved for 3-4 minutes. Here are some of the steps to making them; complete recipe after the photos.

In large frying pan saute one pound very lean ground beef. When beef is brown, drain off fat if needed, then push it to the side and brown onions in the same pan.

Add rinsed black beans, tomatoes, green chiles, chile powder, and cumin and simmer about 30 minutes.

Mix two cups cooked rice and cheese into beef/tomato/bean mixture. Cut off tops of peppers, remove seeds, and cut a thin piece off the bottom so it is flat. Stuff peppers with mixture, cover and bake.

Southwestern Stuffed Peppers
(Makes six generous servings, recipe created by Kalyn)

6 large red, yellow, orange, or green peppers
1 lb. extra lean ground beef
(less than 10% fat)
1-2 tsp. olive oil if needed
1 onion, chopped
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can diced tomatoes and juice (14.5 oz. can; I like Muir Glen organic tomatoes)
1 can (4 oz.) diced green chiles with juice (Anaheim chiles, not jalapenos)
1 tsp. Ancho chile powder ( Can substitute regular chile powder but Ancho chile powder has great flavor, I use Penzeys)
1 tsp. ground cumin
2 cups cooked white rice (use Uncle Ben's Converted Rice for South Beach)
1 1/2 cups grated cheese (I used Mexican Four Cheese Blend which is low fat cheeses)

Preheat oven to 375 F.

In large frying pan, brown ground beef well and drain off fat. Push ground beef to the side, add a bit of olive oil if pan seems dry and saute onion 3-4 minutes, until well softened. Add rinsed black beans, tomatoes and juice, green chiles and juice, chile powder, and cumin. Reduce heat to low and simmer 20-30 minutes, until most of the liquid has evaporated.

While mixture simmers, cut tops off peppers and remove seeds. Cut a very thin slice from the bottom of each pepper so peppers are flat on the bottom and will stand upright. (Some peppers might not need this.)

When mixture in pan seems dry, turn off heat. Let cool about 5 minutes, then mix in cooked rice and cheese. Stuff each pepper with the meat/rice mixture, pushing it down so peppers are tightly filled.

Place peppers in a dish small enough to hold them compactly and cover with foil. Bake at 375 for 30 minutes. Remove foil, and bake 10-20 minutes more, until tops are slightly browned and pepper skin can be pierced easily with a fork. Serve immediately.

South Beach Suggestions:
This is a perfect main dish for phase two or three of The South Beach Diet. It would be great served with Kalyn's Low Carb Coleslaw, Cucumbers Caesar, Slow Roasted Asparagus, or Pureed Cauliflower with Garlic, Parmesan, and Goat Cheese.
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  1. Gorgeous! Kalyn this is perfect. I am having my in-laws over next weekend and was wondering what I could serve. I think I have found it. Ummmm!

  2. I have always been a fan of stuffed peppers... And this recipe looks and sounds great! Thanks Kalyn!

  3. This looks really good Kalyn. It's because of you that I learned about Uncle Ben's converted rice. Now I'm converted!

  4. I bet this would work great with refried beans as well!

  5. So I had to come back and let you know that I made these a few days ago. A few minor changes but on the whole I stuck to the recipe.
    They were totally scrumptiuos. Loved all the tastes and flavours. Just perfect. Thanks Kalyn.

  6. Meeta, I'm so happy to hear you like them. I love the combination of black beans and red peppers myself.

  7. Hey, any estimate of how many calories are in this ?

  8. Sorry, I have no idea of the calorie count since I don't count calories. I know there are a number of online tools where you can enter the ingredients and it will figure it for you if that's something you need to know. Just google it.

  9. Awesome recipe! All I did different was to add some cilantro. Really yummy. I only made 4 peppers though and used the leftover filling as taco meat! YUM!

  10. LOVE the idea of adding cilantro. Now why didn't I think of that? Especially since I love it so much.

  11. Hi Kalyn! I just made these for dinner tonight and they're a BIG hit with my family. Had mine with a dollop of light sour cream and it was sooooo goooood! Thanks so much, this one's going to come up in regular rotation at our house!

  12. Snerkology, so glad you liked it! This is a favorite of my dad!

  13. SO good! Just made them tonight for dinner. I'm a vegetarian so I substituted Yves 'meatless ground' for the beef and used brown rice instead of white - fantastic!

  14. Great way to adapt the recipe, glad you liked it!

  15. Do you know if I can freeze these after assembled and then just pop them in the oven when I need them?

  16. I'm not sure about freezing the raw peppers, but I think if you cook the peppers in the microwave for a few minutes (or parboil) then you could stuff and freeze and finish cooking later. Love to know how it works if you try it.

  17. This was delicious! I had peppers too tiny to stuff, so I sliced em, layered them with the filling, lasagna style. My fam loved the "unstuffed peppers."

    @ anonymous... I froze it pre-cooked, raw peppers and all. No problems! Excellent texture!

  18. Well-Seasoned, so glad you liked it. Thanks for the idea about layering with the smaller peppers and also for the freezing tip!

  19. I substituted the ground beef with ground turkey - I'm not missing any of the flavor at all... I also added in baby spinach and left out the rice. Great recipe - keep them coming!

  20. Looks really good. Did I miss which size can of tomatoes?

  21. Nan, thanks for catching that. It's a 14.5 oz. can. That's the only size I buy, but I will edit to sway that in the recipe.

  22. These were delicious!! Only change I made was using ground turkey instead of beef (yay for HEB having a pack of "day before expiration" Jennie O turkey for $1.50!). Thanks again for a wonderful recipe! :)

  23. I welcome people figuring out nutritional information for their own use, But since I don't need it and I have no way to know if it's accurate, I'm not going to post comments with that information.

  24. Hi I have a question..what side dish would work best with this...potatoes can't really work because rice is already in it...and as for the girl asking if you can freeze can freeze them if you pouch them...boil the peppers for a few min before stuffing them that way they can be freezed....its an old trick my grandmother taught me...using the meat grease can be brushed on the outside of the peppers as cooking to ad extra flavor and keep the pepper from getting crispy also..taiste so good

  25. It's hard for me to recommend side dishes because everyone has different tastes, but I'd eat this with some kind of green salad or maybe a cooked vegetable dish.


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