Thursday, August 2, 2012

Quinoa Stuffed Bell Peppers

Jason loves bell peppers so this dish was made especially for him. While peppers aren't my favorite vegetable, I enjoy quinoa, which was the other main component to the dish, making it a great combination of foods we both like. Traditionally, stuffed peppers are made with meat and I have tried them with ground turkey before but these were way better. The quinoa with black beans, onions and jalapeno were extremely filling and packed full of flavor with a bit of heat from the jalapeno and the baked bell peppers have an almost sweet flavor to them. I guess I bought smaller peppers because I couldn't fit all of the filling inside. However, the quinoa and black bean filling was perfect over some lettuce for lunch or another dinner. If you want to make this not only vegetarian but vegan just omit the cheese.

Quinoa Stuffed Bell Peppers Serves: 8 (1/2 pepper each)
Source: Eat Yourself Skinny

1 medium onion, chopped
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 Tbsp ground cumin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes, drained, liquid reserved
1 (15 oz) can black beans, rinsed, drained
3/4 cup quinoa
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup Pepper Jack cheese, shredded
4 large red bell peppers, halved lengthwise, ribs removed
Salt and pepper

Heat oil in saucepan over medium heat. Saute onion, celery and jalapeno for about 5 minutes, until soft. Add cumin and garlic and cook for additional minute. Stir in drained tomaotes (reserving liquid) and cook for 5 minutes until most of the liquid has evaporated. 

Stir in black beans, quinoa and 1 1/2 cups water.  Cover and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until quinoa is tender.  Stir in 1 cup of cheese and season with salt and pepper, if desired.

Preheat oven to 350F and pour reserved liquid from tomatoes in the bottom of your baking dish.

Fill each halved bell pepper with 3/4 cup quinoa mixture and place in baking dish.  Cover with foil and bake 40 minutes.  Transfer stuffed bell peppers onto serving dish and drizzle pan juices over top. 

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