Southwest Beef and Quinoa Stuffed Peppers
Anytime I go to Costco, you can pretty much guarantee I have stuffed peppers in my cart. Of all their prepared foods they’re probably my favorite. They can be a quick and easy item to throw in the oven and serve with a salad or raw veggies, they freeze well, and they can be an easy item to bake on a Sunday to have lunches for a couple of days. I didn’t really consider making my own stuffed peppers until I had an abundance of peppers and nothing to do with them. I guess I thought they would take a long time to prepare or would be a bit difficult to make. In reality, even making them from scratch, I would still consider them a quick and easy meal.
After scouring the internet I finally found a stuffed pepper recipe that’s easy to make but full of flavor. I like this recipe in particular because it has the Tex-Mex flavours I absolutely love, but the ingredients are also ones I always have in the house. Because of that, and the easy access to peppers here in Medicine Hat, these will quickly become a go to meal in my house. The ground beef could easily be swapped out for ground turkey or another ground meat. You could also use half the amount of ground beef and add 1 cup of black beans if you wanted too. I find that this recipe makes quite a bit of filling, so make sure you freeze any leftover filling to use another time.
Recipe from Platings and Pairings
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
3/4 cup quinoa
1 onion, diced
4 green onions, diced (I’ve made the recipe without the green onions and it turned out just fine)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb ground beef
2 red bell peppers, halved and seeded
2 yellow bell peppers, halved and seeded
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
1 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese (can use Cheddar cheese instead)
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 1/2 tsp chili powder
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne
salt and pepper
2 limes cut into wedges for serving
1. Preheat oven to 400 degree Fahrenheit. Bring stock and a pinch of salt to boil in a small pot. Once boiling, add quinoa. Cover and cook on low heat for 15-20 minutes. Quinoa can also be cooked in a rice cooker.
2. Arrange the pepper halves on a baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 tbsp. olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake until softened, 7-10 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, green onions and garlic. Cook 4-5 minutes, until softened. Add ground beef and break up as it browns, 3-4 minutes. Stir in chili powder, cumin, paprika and cayenne and cook for an additional 30 seconds. Add in tomatoes and let simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in cooked quinoa and season with salt and pepper.
4. Fill peppers with beef mixture and sprinkle with cheese. Bake 10 minutes. Serve with lime wedges on the side if desired.