Being low in calories and rich in vitamin C and other antioxidants, bell peppers are an excellent addition to a healthy diet. This stuffed bell recipe lets you use all the beautiful bell peppers and tomatoes from your garden.
6 red/yellow bell peppers, cut lengthwise
1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 medium zucchini, finely diced
4 Roma tomatoes, seeded and finely diced
4 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling
8 ounces lean ground beef
1 onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup cooked long-grain and wild rice
2 cups grated mild cheddar or pepper Jack cheese
Salt and black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Make sure to scoop out the seeds and the membrane out of the cut bell peppers. Place the peppers cut-side up in a baking dish.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the beef, season with salt and pepper and cook, breaking up the lumps, until the meat is cooked through and just beginning to brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate to get rid of the fat.
- Wipe out the skillet and add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add the onions and chopped green pepper and cook until beginning to soften, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and zucchini and cook for another minute. Add the tomatoes and season with salt and a pinch or 2 of red pepper flakes. Cook until everything is heated through, then stir in the beef and rice. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
- Fill the peppers with the rice mixture and top each with a generous amount of cheese. Pour a small amount of water into the bottom of the baking dish and drizzle the peppers with a little olive oil. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until the peppers are soft and the cheese is melted and lightly browned, another 15 to 20 minutes.