I’ve been playing around with stuffed bell pepper recipes for quite awhile. I normally cook them in the oven, but recently I’ve been trying to use my crock pot more often. As a mom, I find it to be absolutely indispensable. You can prep it either the night before or in the morning and then forget about it.
Most of the recipes call for cooked rice, so I’ve been on a mission not to figure out how to do it without cooking the rice ahead of time. After all, if I wanted to spend so much time over the stove, I would’ve done them the traditional way in the oven. Luckily for us, I got the recipe right this time.
- 4-6 bell peppers (I prefer red, orange or yellow) – whatever will fit in your crock pot
- ¾ lb ground meat (turkey, beef or veggie – makes a good vegan meal)
- ½ cup uncooked rice
- ½ medium yellow onion, chopped
- 1 can (15 oz) diced tomatoes
- 1 tbsp dried Italian seasoning or equivalent (basil, thyme, marjoram)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1½ cup pasta sauce
Start by cleaning your peppers. Cut off the tops and chop up any edible bits. Clean out the inside stuff and remove all of the seeds. Put the peppers standing up right in your crock pot.
Brown the meat in the pan, if needed. You don’t have to with a lot of veggie meat, or if you’re like us, your meat will already be cooked. I buy large amounts of fresh ground turkey, cook it and then put it in freezer safe containers for a later date.
Once the meat is ready, mix the meat, bell pepper pieces (from the tops), onion and the rest of the ingredients except the pasta sauce in a bowl. Spoon the mixture into the bell peppers. If you have remaining mixture, I normally just put it on the bottom of the crock pot in between the peppers. Pour the sauce over the peppers.
Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours. Its ready when the peppers are soft.
Hint: if you’re ever short on time, you can pop the peppers in the microwave for a few minutes while you’re prepping the mixture. I find its the peppers themselves that takes the longest.