After the success of the kale chips, I’ve been mildly obsessed with finding new, delicious ways to make sure Joey and I are getting our vegetables. Nine times out of ten, we consume the majority of greens (and reds, yellows, and oranges) at dinner, which puts a bit of pressure on me, the primary dinner cooker, to step up.
Challenge accepted, dietary needs. Challenge accepted.
I don’t know why, but I’ve been wanting to attempt stuffed peppers for a while. I started searching around online for a decent recipe, but I couldn’t find one that was exactly what I was looking for. Eventually, I just decided to cobble together my own version based on what I had read.
Total disclosure: I didn’t love these, but Joey really liked them. Which is surprising because my main complaint is that they tasted “too healthy.” (There I go putting those word-smithing skills to work…gawd…) But Joey did like them, and he doesn’t really care if something is healthy or not, so I guess you’ll just have to try them to see if they suit your palate.
Anyway, let’s begin. Here’s what you need:
4-5 bell peppers
1 cup quinoa
1 package ground turkey
1/2 cup onion, minced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp crushed red pepper
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup Greek yogurt
1/2 cup dried spinach (fresh would also work)
1/2 cup spaghetti sauce
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
Grated mozzarella cheese for sprinkling
First, set a large pot of water to boil.
Second, put the quinoa in a sauce pan with 2 cups water and start to boil. Once it boils, reduce to simmer and cook for 10-15 minutes until water is absorbed. (This was my first time making quinoa. Basically, it’s done when the water is absorbed and it starts to look like little translucent pearls.)
Next, cut off the tops of 4-5 bell peppers and shake out any seeds that remain inside. Tip: Choose fattish peppers that can stand up by themselves. In my case, the yellow ones were better suited for stuffing than the red peppers, but what can you do.
Boil these in the large pot of water for about five minutes. Then remove from water and let cool.
In a large saucepan, brown turkey with onion and garlic. Add salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper to taste. While that cooks, preheat oven to 350 degrees (F).
When the turkey is no longer pink, put turkey mixture in a large bowl. Mix in Greek yogurt, spinach, spaghetti sauce, and Parmesan.
Spray a small 8×8 casserole with cooking spray and arrange peppers with openings upright. Pack each pepper with turkey mixture. Sprinkle tops with grated mozzarella.
Bake stuffed peppers for 25 minutes.
The Goods: This recipe is packed with vitamins, fiber, and protein, and it’s incredibly filling. The hubs and I were both stuffed (pun intended!) after one pepper each. I would imagine the quinoa has a lot to do with that.
The Bads: Like I said, the taste was a little…healthy for me. But Joey disagreed, so what do I know. Also, fair warning, this is definitely not a “one pan” meal. You’re utilizing at least three different cooking methods, so you will have a few dishes to do at the end.
Anyone else cook something for the first time this week?