Recipe of the Week – Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

Recipe of the Week – Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

This weeks recipe was sent to me by one of our members, Natalie Blaylock. Over the weekend I was at Priest Lake and had eaten nothing but lake food for 3 days (BBQ chicken, huckleberry pancakes, ice cream at Leonard Paul) and my body was needing something a little lighter. These stuffed peppers were filling, delicious and really easy to mix up! Per Natalie’s extra instructions, I added in chicken sausage to the quinoa mixture but if you’re looking for a meat free meal, the mixture would be just as delicious without the sausage.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 1 cup Vegetable broth (I used chicken because I don’t believe in vegetable broth)
  • 1 teaspoon Olive Oil
  • 1/2 pound chicken sausage (optional)
  • 3/4 can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (I used a teaspoon of my homemade Italian seasoning instead of salt)
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 3 tablespoons freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese (I try to avoid as much dairy as possible so I left this out)
  • 1/2 cup baby spinach, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/4 cup shredded whole milk mozzarella cheese, grated (again, I left this cheese out)

for the Peppers

  • 2 large red bell peppers
  • 4 tablespoons canned crushed tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons grated Pecorino Romano cheese (once more, left this cheese out)
  • 1/4 cup shredded whole milk mozzarella cheese, grated
  • 1/3 cup broth

Ingredients

*not pictured – garlic. I forgot.

 

Directions

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Double check that you don’t have a cookie sheet in there because you use your oven as a drying rack. (Whoops, I did!)

Oven

First, I added the quinoa and broth to a pan, brought it to a boil and cooked the quinoa until all the liquid was absorbed. Since it’s only a cup of broth, this happens faster than one might think so pay attention! While the quinoa was boiling, I cooked the chicken sausage until it was slightly browned and cooked through. I added the garlic, crushed tomatoes, pepper and Italian seasoning to the pan and stirred everything together. Once everything was incorporated (about 5 minutes) I removed the pan from the burner and added the basil, spinach and quinoa. I set the mixture aside so I could get the peppers ready.

Quinoa Mixture    Quinoa Mixed

Once the peppers were halved and seeded, I added about a 1/2 cup of the filling plus a tablespoon of crushed tomatoes to each pepper and topped it with a two halves of a thin slice of mozzarella cheese (because I don’t have a cheese grater).

Pre oven Peppers

Once the peppers were ready to bake, I added some broth to the bottom of the Pyrex dish and covered it with foil. Once the pan was in the oven, the recipe said to bake for 50 minutes but I took my peppers out after about 35 minutes. My oven is bakes very hot and I knew 50 minutes would be too long.

In the oven

Bake up little guys!

Here is the finished product –

Baked

Finished

Natalie had a note on the recipe that said these were better the second day and she is absolutely right! I had a leftover pepper for breakfast with a fried egg on top and it was so good. I can also see myself doubling this recipe and making these peppers for a dinner party.

Have you guys been cooking anything fun and healthy this week? Let me know in the comments! Happy Kitchen Adventures!

Libby