Thursday, August 4, 2011

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

This is the first time I've ever made stuffed peppers. I read several different recipes and ultimately decided to just make up my own. They turned out to be delicious! I opted to make a healthier version. Instead of ground beef, I used ground turkey, and instead of white rice I used quinoa. Now I'll admit that I've had a package of quinoa laying in my pantry for over a month now. I've never used this type of grain and I was kind of afraid of what it would taste like. It turned out to be great! I like it more than rice and it's also a lot healthier for you.  It's considered one of the most nutritious grains and contains a lot of protein. This recipe was easy to make although it took some time to put together. I ended up having a ton of leftover "filling." In this recipe, I only used two peppers but you would probably have enough of the quinoa mixture for 5, maybe more. This recipe feeds a lot of people and is affordable. The leftover quinoa mixture tastes great on its own. Add some fresh avocado and serve as a salad. Throw it in an omelet and you have yourself a Mexican style breakfast! Serve it with some salsa and I'm sure it would taste great.

1 stalk celery, finely chopped
1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
3/4 lb ground turkey
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tbsp cumin
1/4 tsp red pepper
1/2 tsp chili powder
2 cups frozen spinach
2 stalks carrot, grated
1 cup quinoa
1cup water
1 cup low sodium chicken broth
1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 15 oz can Muir Glen diced tomatoes, drained
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Pepper jack cheese, grated
4 cups of water, boiled
2 peppers, cut lengthwise and deseeded

Preheat over to 350 degrees
Brown turkey meat, set aside.

Cook quinoa in water and chicken broth. Bring to boil then let simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.

Boil frozen spinach until cooked. (about 3 minutes)

Add oil to skillet over medium heat and saute onion and celery until soft. Add spices and garlic. Saute for another minute.  Add tomato and spinach and saute for 5 minutes. Add carrots and black beans and cook for another minute then add turkey and stir. Transfer to large bowl then add quinoa, salt, and pepper. Mix well.

Bring 4 cups water to a boil.

Place peppers in large baking dish and fill each with mixture. Put as much as you can in them. Top with 1 tbsp of pepper jack cheese.

Pour boiling water into baking dish so it’s about one inch up peppers. Cover, and place in oven for 30-40 minutes or until peppers are fork tender.


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