These Stuffed Peppers Recipe (Keto) are made with ground beef, onion, garlic, carrots, celery and tomatoes which are cooked and stuffed in bell peppers.
This is a classic delicious Tex-Mex recipe, not to mention a great Keto recipe using the bell peppers as an edible cup. I have lived in both Mexico and Texas and these stuffed peppers are widely eaten in Texas, not so much Mexico. In Mexico, the peppers that are mostly consumed are poblano peppers. The "stuffed peppers" made in Mexico are ones called Chiles en Nogada. Of all the low-carb vegetables, the humble bell pepper has to be the most underrated, making this a keto friendly recipe.
These stuffed peppers can be time consuming but it is worth it! The prep work comes with coring the peppers and chopping the vegetables. After cooking the ground beef, and veggies, stuff them in those bell peppers and top with cheese. Bake for 20 minutes and you’re gold.
What are Stuffed Peppers?
Stuffed peppers are a popular dish made by filling bell peppers with a mixture of ingredients, such as ground meat, vegetables, and cheese, and baking them until tender. The peppers are usually cut in half lengthwise, and the seeds and membranes are removed to create a hollow cavity that can be filled with the stuffing mixture.
Stuffed peppers are a versatile dish that can be customized to suit your taste preferences and dietary restrictions. For example, you can use different types of meat like ground beef, turkey, or sausage, or you can make a vegetarian version by using quinoa, lentils, or beans instead of meat. You can also vary the seasonings and spices to create different flavor profiles, such as Italian, Mexican, or Mediterranean.
Stuffed peppers are a nutritious and delicious meal that can be served as a main course or a side dish. They are high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals, and are a great way to incorporate more vegetables into your diet. Plus, they are easy to make and can be prepared in advance and reheated for a quick and healthy meal.
Stuffed Peppers Ingredients
- Ground beef
- Bell peppers
- Olive oil
- Chili powder
- Onion powder
See recipe card for quantities.
How to make Stuffed Peppers without Rice
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. In a large saucepan with a cover, heat up the oil. When the oil shimmers, add the beef and cook until broken up and soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in the onion, celery, garlic, and carrots. Cook for 5 minutes, tossing frequently.
Add garlic and toss for 1 minute. Add salt, pepper, chili powder, and onion powder. Cook the beef, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, for 8 to 10 minutes, tossing frequently.
Place peppers cut side up in a baking dish small enough to hold them upright - 9 x 13 inch should be good. With a slotted spoon or a regular spoon, add the beef mixture in each pepper. Sprinkle each with cheese. (I used some vegetables to keep them upright.)
Cover tightly with foil and bake for 10 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 15 minutes, until peppers are tender.
Hint: Make sure to cover with foil when baking.
Ground beef: I love using ground beef for this recipe. If you are truly against it, you could use ground turkey or ground chicken.
Garlic: You can smash the garlic or mince it.
Olive Oil: I would extra virgin olive oil for best quality and taste.
Vegetables: Using carrots, onion and celery is an amazing combination, especially combined with diced tomato. You may use only one or the other.
Seasoning: I love using garlic and onion powder for this recipe. If you want something spicier, you could always add chili powder or paprika.
Stuffed Peppers Recipe Variations
Stuffed Peppers are a versatile dish that can be customized to suit your taste preferences and dietary restrictions. Here are some Stuffed Peppers recipe variations you might want to try:
- Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers: Use quinoa, lentils, or beans instead of meat to create a hearty and flavorful vegetarian version of Stuffed Peppers.
- Mexican-style Stuffed Peppers: Add Mexican-inspired ingredients like corn, black beans, cilantro, and salsa to the stuffing mixture to create a delicious and spicy Mexican-style Stuffed Pepper.
- Italian-style Stuffed Peppers: Use Italian sausage, Parmesan cheese, and Italian seasoning to create a savory and aromatic Italian-style Stuffed Pepper.
- Mediterranean-style Stuffed Peppers: Use Mediterranean-inspired ingredients like feta cheese, olives, and spinach to create a delicious and healthy Mediterranean-style Stuffed Pepper.
- Ground Turkey Stuffed Peppers: Use ground turkey instead of ground beef to create a leaner and healthier version of Stuffed Peppers.
- Low-Carb Stuffed Peppers: Use cauliflower rice instead of white rice to create a low-carb version of Stuffed Peppers.
- Spicy Stuffed Peppers: Add chili powder, cayenne pepper, or hot sauce to the stuffing mixture to create a spicy and flavorful Stuffed Pepper.
Check out my Stuffed Anaheim Peppers Recipe.
To make Stuffed Peppers, you'll need some basic kitchen equipment, including:
- A baking dish: A baking dish to bake the stuffed peppers in the oven.
- A knife and cutting board: to chop the vegetables and prepare the stuffing mixture.
- A skillet or frying pan: to cook the meat and vegetables for the stuffing mixture.
- Mixing bowls and spoons: to mix the stuffing ingredients together.
- Aluminum foil: to cover the baking dish and prevent the stuffed peppers from drying out.
- Oven mitts or heat-resistant gloves: to handle the hot baking dish when removing it from the oven.
How to store Stuffed Peppers without Rice
Storing Stuffed Peppers without rice is similar to storing rice-filled Stuffed Peppers. Here are the steps you can follow:
- Let the Stuffed Peppers cool completely before storing them. This will prevent condensation from forming inside the container, which can cause the peppers to become soggy.
- Transfer the Stuffed Peppers to an airtight container. Make sure the container is large enough to hold the peppers without squishing them.
- Place the container in the refrigerator. Stuffed Peppers without rice can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
- To reheat the Stuffed Peppers, preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Place the Stuffed Peppers in a baking dish and cover with aluminum foil. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until heated through.
Alternatively, you can also reheat the Stuffed Peppers in the microwave. Place the Stuffed Peppers on a microwave-safe dish and microwave on high for 1-2 minutes, or until heated through. Check the temperature of the Stuffed Peppers with a food thermometer to ensure they have reached an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) before serving.
Stuffed Peppers Recipe Top tips
Here are some Stuffed Peppers recipe top tips to help you make delicious and perfectly cooked stuffed peppers:
- Choose the right peppers: Look for large, firm peppers that can hold their shape when baked. Bell peppers are a popular choice, but you can also use poblano, anaheim, or any other type of pepper that you prefer.
- Parboil the peppers: Parboiling the peppers before stuffing them helps to soften them slightly and makes them easier to fill. Boil the peppers in a large pot of salted water for 3-5 minutes, then drain and rinse under cold water.
- Use a flavorful stuffing mixture: The stuffing mixture is what makes the Stuffed Peppers tasty and satisfying. Use a mixture of meat, rice or other grains, vegetables, and seasonings to create a delicious stuffing.
- Add cheese: Cheese adds an extra layer of flavor and richness to Stuffed Peppers. Try adding shredded cheese to the stuffing mixture, or sprinkle some on top of the peppers before baking.
- Cover with foil: Covering the baking dish with foil during the first part of the cooking process helps to trap steam and cook the peppers evenly. Remove the foil during the last 10-15 minutes of cooking to allow the cheese to melt and the tops of the peppers to brown.
- Test for doneness: Check the temperature of the stuffing mixture with a food thermometer to ensure it has reached an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) before serving. This ensures that the meat is cooked through and safe to eat.
- Let the Stuffed Peppers cool before serving: Letting the Stuffed Peppers cool for a few minutes before serving allows the flavors to meld together and makes the peppers easier to handle.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove