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Green peppers are great, but they are even better stuffed with tomatoes, corn, ground chicken, spices, nutritous quinoa and topped with melted cheese.  A doctored up recipe my mom used to make regularly as a kid. 

Don’t be afraid of quinoa if you haven’t tried it.  You can substitute brown rice, but quinoa is a grain and plant protein chocked full of vitamins and minerals.  Come on, live life on the culinary edge and give it a try if you haven’t.

Fun, filling, dinner party main dish you can make ahead.  I just love that each guest gets a personal little pepper of their own.  Try serving with a green salad and my rosemary corn muffins (in the sides recipe tab).  Mix it up and add beans, other vegetables or meats to the filling.

serves 6

  • 6 large GREEN PEPPERS (or red, yellow, orange)
  • 1 small ONION, chopped
  • 3 clove GARLIC, minced
  • 1/2 tbsp BUTTER, REGULAR, UNSALTED, (or olive oil)
  • 3/4 cup CORN, FROZEN OR FRESH
  • 16 oz LEAN GROUND CHICKEN OR TURKEY, 93/7
  • 1/4 cup TOMATO PASTE
  • 10 oz TOMATOES, DICED W/GREEN CHILIES
  • 1/4 cup KETCHUP
  • 1/2 cup WATER
  • 3/4 cup COOKED, WHOLE GRAIN QUINOA OR BROWN RICE
  • 1/8 tsp RED PEPPER, CRUSHED, (optional)
  • SEA SALT AND PEPPER TO TASTE
  • 1 tbsp PARSLEY, FRESH (or 2 tsp dried)
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp ITALIAN SEASONING, dried
  • 6 tsp BREAD CRUMBS, ITALIAN OR WHEAT
  • 6 tbsp SHREDDED CHEESE, PEPPERJACK, CHEDDAR OR MIXTURE

1. Hull peppers by cutting a large circle around the outside top. Remove stem, core, seeds and top, leaving the bottom in tact. Place peppers in a 7×11 baking dish lined with cooking sprayed foil, set aside.

2. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook 5-6 minutes or until softend, add garlic, corn and saute 1-2 additional minutes, stirring not to burn. Sprinkle with salt and pepper remove from pan and set aside.

3. In same skillet cook ground chicken until browned, about 7-8 minutes and crumble. Add onion mixture and tomato paste back into skillet with chicken, stir to “wake up” tomato paste. Add ketchup, diced tomatoes with juice, parsley, italian seasoning, quinoa, water, crushed red pepper if using, and simmer for about 5 minutes.  QC(quality control) check: take a bite and add more seasonings, salt or pepper to taste.

4. Preheat oven to 350 if baking immediately. Pour a small amount of water (1/4 cup) into the bottom of the baking pan with peppers. Scoop even amounts of chicken mixture into each pepper, pushing down with back of spoon to fill and level top. Sprinkle each top with 1 tsp bread crumbs (may cover and refrigerate at this point for up to 2 days).

5. Bake, uncovered for 50-60 minutes. The last 10 minutes of baking top each pepper with 1 Tbsp shredded cheese.  Garnish with chopped fresh parsley, if desired and serve.  Even better when baked ahead and reheated. Serving size: one pepper.

just waiting for a spoon to dig in…..

NUTRITION PER SERVING: 300 calories, 7g fat, 2g sat fat, 65mg cholesterol, 37g carb, 6g fiber, 11g sugar, 22g protein

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