These stuffed bell peppers are filled with a mixture of ground beef, tomato sauce and rice, then topped with cheese and baked to perfection. A classic dish that’s comfort food at its finest!
Stuffed bell peppers have been popular for many years for good reason – they’re totally delicious! My version features a hearty beef and rice mixture with plenty of melted cheese. Serve your stuffed peppers as-is, or add a side salad for a meal that your family will be sure to love.
How do you make stuffed bell peppers?
Prepare the bell peppers by slicing off the tops and removing the seeds. Bake the empty peppers to soften them up before you add the filling. The filling for these peppers is a mixture of ground beef, tomato sauce, rice and cheese. After the peppers have softened, they’re filled with the stuffing and a layer of cheese goes over the top. Bake your peppers until they’re completely tender, then add a sprinkling of parsley and serve.
Tips for stuffed peppers
- Look for bell peppers that are about the same size to make sure that each of the peppers takes the same amount of time to cook.
- If a pepper does not stand up on its own, cut a thin slice off of the bottom of the pepper to make the bottom level.
- Feel free to use different colored bell peppers. The cooking process is the same for each of the colors and the dish will be more vibrant.
Do peppers need to be cooked before they’re stuffed?
Peppers need to be cooked before they are stuffed to ensure they are tender. If you want a crispier pepper you can omit the par-baking step.
Can stuffed bell peppers be made in advance?
Stuffed peppers can be made in advance. You want to follow all the steps in the recipe except topping the peppers with cheese, then refrigerate the peppers. When you are ready to serve the peppers, top them with cheese and bake them at 350 degrees F for 35 minutes. Remove the covering and bake them for an additional 10 minutes.
How do you reheat stuffed peppers?
You can reheat stuffed peppers either in the oven or in the microwave. To reheat in the oven, bake the peppers in a covered dish at 350 degrees F for 15-20 minutes or until heated through. To reheat the peppers in the microwave, cook them individually on high heat for 2 minutes.
Stuffed bell pepper variations
These meaty stuffed peppers are delicious as-is, but you can also customize them to suit your taste.
- Meat: You can use sausage or ground turkey instead of ground beef.
- Grains: Try quinoa or orzo instead of rice
- Veggies: These peppers are great with other vegetables added to the filling such as diced zucchini, olives or corn.
- Cheese: You can use a different cheese to top the peppers such as cheddar or Monterey Jack.
These stuffed bell peppers are a classic dish that remain popular because they are so delicious. Everyone will be asking for seconds when these stuffed peppers are on the dinner table!
More comfort food classics
Stuffed Bell Peppers
- 6 bell peppers any color, or a combination of colors
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 1/2 pounds ground beef I use 90% lean
- 1/2 cup onion finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons garlic minced
- 1 1/2 cups cooked white rice
- salt and pepper to taste
- 15 ounce can tomato sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese shredded, divided use
- 2 tablespoons parsley chopped
- cooking spray
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a large baking dish with cooking spray.
- Slice the tops off the peppers and remove the ribs and seeds inside.
- Place the peppers cut side down in the baking dish. Add 1 1/2 cups of water to the dish.
- Cover the dish with foil and bake for 25 minutes.
- While the peppers are cooking, prepare the filling. Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.
- Add the ground beef and season with salt and pepper.
- Cook for 5-6 minutes, breaking up the meat with a spatula, until meat is cooked through.
- Add the onion to the pan and cook for 3-4 minutes or until softened. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
- Add the rice, tomato sauce and Italian seasoning. Stir to combine. Stir in 1/2 cup cheese and salt and pepper to taste.
- Remove the peppers from the oven and drain off the water. Turn the peppers over and fill each one with the beef mixture.
- Top each pepper with the remaining cheese. Cover and bake for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 10 minutes or until cheese is melted and browned and peppers are tender.
- Sprinkle with parsley, then serve.