Stuffed Bell Peppers With Ground Beef, Rice, and Cheese

These stuffed peppers are made with green, yellow, or red bell peppers and a deliciously seasoned ground beef and rice filling. Garlic and some dried basil add flavor to the simple tomato sauce. Use cheddar cheese or a pizza blend of shredded cheddar and mozzarella cheese to top the stuffed peppers.

Ingredients

  • 4 bell peppers, red, yellow, or green, or a combination
  • 2 teaspoons salt

For the Filling and Sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil leaves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 pound lean ground beef, or ground turkey
  • 1 cup cooked long-grain rice

Method

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Cut tops off peppers; remove seeds and membranes. Chop edible part of tops and set aside. Rinse peppers under cold water. Place peppers in a large pot; cover with salted water. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes. Drain peppers and set aside.

  3. Heat olive oil in a large skillet or sauté pan over medium heat until hot. Sauté chopped green pepper (from tops), chopped onion, and chopped celery for about 5 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, water, crushed garlic, basil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Simmer for about 10 minutes.

  4. Preheat oven to 350 F.

  5. In a large mixing bowl, combine the beaten egg with remaining 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and Worcestershire sauce. Gently stir to blend; add ground beef, cooked rice, and 1 cup of the tomato mixture. Mix well.

  6. Stuff peppers with meat mixture and place in a 3-quart baking dish. Pour remaining tomato mixture over the stuffed peppers.

  7. Bake in preheated oven for about 45 minutes, or until the meat mixture is fully cooked. The temperature of the meat mixture should be cooked to a minimum of 160 F.

  8. Top stuffed peppers with a little shredded cheddar cheese just before they are done; bake until cheese is melted.

  9. Serve and enjoy.