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Ina Garten Stuffed Peppers Recipe

Are you looking for a perfect appetizer or main course for your brunch or dinner party? It might seem like no dish can be an ideal fit for both, but Ina Garten’s Stuffed Peppers is a match.

Sweet bell peppers stuffed with wine-flavored ground beef and a mixture of perfectly melted cheese can’t leave anyone indifferent.

While it may sound complicated, we will show you how easy this Stuffed Peppers recipe can be, and in less than 40 minutes of cook time.

Let’s get cooking!

How to Make Ina Garten Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed Peppers is the perfect dish if you have some time to cook before the guests arrive since you can prepare everything and just bake it after.

The whole process comes down to four steps: cooking the rice and beef mixtures, stuffing the peppers, baking, and topping it all with your favorite cheese.

Sounds tempting?

Ingredients:

(4 servings)

 For the peppers:

  • 6 large bell peppers (orange, red, or yellow)
  • 1 pound of ground beef
  • 2 cups cooked rice
  • 1 cup of chicken broth
  • 2 cups shredded cheese
  • 2 medium onions
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 4 plum tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste

 For the seasoning:

  • 2 teaspoons thyme leaves
  • Kosher salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 cup of dry white wine

Instructions:

This Stuffed Peppers recipe perfectly fits the key philosophy of Ina Garten’s — pre-preparing everything, and only baking at meal time. That’s exactly what we’re going to do, along with sharing some secrets on how not to make the peppers watery and the beef dry.

Step 1:

Prepare the peppers. Wash them well and trim about ⅛-inch off the bottom so they sit upright. Cut the top of each pepper, scoop out the seeds, and clean the membranes as much as you can.

Chop the rest of the pepper tops, as we will need them for later.

Step 2:

Precook the peppers by putting them in a microwave-safe bowl with a cup of water. Microwave for about 10 minutes on high power.

Note: to avoid watery peppers you can put your peppers in a preheated oven at 350°F for about 10 minutes.

Once cooked, uncover them, and let them sit.

Step 3:

Start cooking the meat. Heat a large skillet with 2 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat. Cook the beef in an even layer and leave for about 3 minutes until it’s lightly brown in the bottom side.

Toss the beef and break up any clumps, scraping up any browned bits. Cook for another 6-8 minutes until it is lightly brown.

Once it’s cooked, transfer the beef to a large bowl with a slotted spoon, so it doesn’t retain too much liquid.

Step 4:

Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil in the same frying pan at medium heat and add the reserved chopped peppers, garlic, thyme, onions, 4 teaspoons of salt, and ½ teaspoon of pepper.

Cook for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally until the veggies are tender, but not brown.

After that add the chopped tomatoes or any other tomato substitutes you like, and cook for 7 minutes stirring occasionally until all the liquid evaporates.

Step 5:

Add the wine and continue stirring for another 6-8 minutes until the mixture is very thick and brick red-colored.

Step 6:

Add the broth to the tomato mixture and get it to boil. Once boiled, transfer it to the beef and stir in the precooked rice, until it is completely combined. Season this wet mixture with pepper and salt.

Step 7:

Moving on to the best part: put the peppers cut-side up in a baking pan and stuff the peppers. Place them in a preheated oven at 450°F.

Note: don’t overstuff the peppers, as it could split the sides and make peppers fall apart.

After baking for 15 minutes, take the peppers out and top them with your cheese mixture (use a fast-melting cheese like mozzarella, cheddar, or parmesan), and bake for another 10-12 minutes until the cheese is melted and brown.

Step 8:

Take your stuffed peppers from Ina Garten and serve them with your favorite side dish.

Ingredient Substitution

As simple as the Ina Garten Stuffed Peppers recipe is, there is not much to replace. But you may want to experiment with different kinds of cheese, meat, or seasoning, as long as you maintain peppers as the main ingredient.

Beef

Like any kind of meat, beef has its special taste. And despite being used in the original recipe, swapping beef with chicken or turkey won’t be much of a difference.

Just try to use the same seasoning to keep the “original” taste.

Wine

Ina Garten Stuffed Peppers won’t be Ina’s if there is no wine. However, some people don’t consume alcohol. So you can use vinegar instead without any pangs of conscience.

Use the same amount of vinegar as you would if you were using wine.

What to Serve with Ina Garten Stuffed peppers

If you ask us, we will say Stuffed Peppers is a perfect course by itself. But if you still want to complement it with some side dish, here are a few ideas to consider.

Even though stuffed peppers could be accompanied by pretty much any side dish, salads make an ideal contrast to the flavored pepper stuffing.

Chicken Noodle Soup

Chicken noodle soup is going to complement your peppers with its fresh flavor of celery, carrots, and chicken, which makes it an ideal comfort food dish.

Also, the little time it takes to cook could probably be done while your peppers are baking. So, it’s a win-win match for your dinner party.

Chicken Salad

What could be better than stuffed peppers alone? Only stuffed peppers are served with a chicken salad. The combination of bacon and cheddar cheese will create a wow effect on your taste receptors.

Note: chicken salad is a good match if you decide to stick to the original recipe and use beef. We wouldn’t want too much chicken, right?

Cooked Broccoli

If you want to add an extra dimension to the flavor of your stuffed peppers, you can never be wrong with broccoli. It is a light side dish that matches any course just fine. Serve it with some extra garlic and cheese to top it off.

How to Reheat Ina Garten Stuffed Peppers

Since the main way of cooking the stuffed peppers is baking them, to get the most out of the stored or leftover stuffed peppers you have to reheat them the same way.

How to Reheat leftover Ina Garten stuffed pepper

If the stuffed peppers aren’t frozen, you just need to put them in the oven at 350°F for 10 minutes, or in the microwave for about 3 minutes until it’s warm enough.

How to Reheat frozen Ina Garten stuffed pepper

If you have frozen your stuffed peppers, you have to bake them without unfreezing for about 20-30 minutes at 350°F.

How to Store Ina Garten Stuffed Peppers

There is no big secret on how to store the stuffed peppers — as we’ve told you before, you can prepare all the ingredients beforehand, only mixing them and baking 30 minutes before they are served.

So, let’s consider how you can store the peppers once they’re already cooked.

Store in the Fridge

If you store the stuffed peppers properly, they can last up to 5 days in the fridge.

To do that, wrap each of the stuffed peppers individually with a plastic wrap in two layers and place them into a glass container.

Store in the Freezer

Obviously, stuffed peppers will last longer in the freezer. But they will lose their flavor if left for too long, so consider not storing them for longer than 3 months.

To store stuffed peppers in the fridge, wrap each of them in a plastic wrap, inside a freezing bag. Then, store them in the freezer.

ina garten stuffed peppers

Ina Garten Stuffed Peppers Recipe

Wow your guests with these sweet and flavorsome Stuffed Peppers, that will be a perfect main course at your dinner party. Though it requires some prep time, you’ll be surprised with the result.
4.84 from 12 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 444 kcal
Equipment
  • Microwave-safe bowl
  • Large skillet
  • Baking pan
Ingredients
  
For the peppers:
  • 6 large bell peppers (orange, red, or yellow)
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 2 cups cooked rice
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 cups shredded cheese
  • 2 medium onions
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 4 plum tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
For the seasoning:
  • 2 tsp thyme leaves
  • Kosher salt
  • ground black pepper
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup dry white wine
Instructions
 
  • Prepare the peppers. Properly wash them and trim about ⅛-inch off the bottom so they sit upright. Cut the top of each pepper, scoop out the seeds, and clean the membranes as much as you can. Chop the rest of the pepper tops, as we will need them for later.
  • Precook the peppers by putting them in a microwave-safe bowl with a cup of water. Microwave for about 10 minutes on high power. Once cooked, uncover them, and let them sit. Note: to avoid watery peppers you can put your peppers in a preheated oven at 350°F for about 10 minutes.
  • Start cooking the meat. Heat a large skillet with 2 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat. Cook the beef in an even layer and leave for about 3 minutes until it’s lightly brown in the bottom side. Toss the beef and break up any clumps, scrapping up any browned bits. Cook for another 6-8 minutes until it is lightly brown. Once it’s cooked, transfer the beef to a large bowl with a slotted spoon, so it doesn’t retain too much liquid.
  • Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil in the same frying pan at medium heat and add the reserved chopped peppers, garlic, thyme, onions, 4 teaspoons of salt, and ½ teaspoon of pepper. Cook for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally until the veggies are tender, but not brown. After that add the chopped tomatoes or any other tomato substitutes you like, and cook for 7 minutes stirring occasionally until all the liquid evaporates.
  • Add the wine and continue stirring for another 6-8 minutes until the mixture is very thick and brick red-colored.
  • Add the broth to the tomato mixture and get it to boil. Once boiled, transfer it to the beef and stir in the precooked rice, until it is completely combined. Season this wet mixture with pepper and salt.
  • Put the peppers cut-side up in a baking pan and stuff them. Place them in a preheated oven at 450°F. After baking for 15 minutes, take the peppers out and top them with your cheese mixture (use a fast-melting cheese like mozzarella, cheddar, or Parmesan), and bake for another 10-12 minutes until the cheese is melted and brown. Note: don’t overstuff the peppers, as it could split the sides and make peppers to fall apart.
  • Take your stuffed peppers from Ina Garten and serve them with your favorite side dish.
Nutrition
Calories: 444kcalProtein: 99gFat: 24gSaturated Fat: 56gTrans Fat: 676gCholesterol: 87mgSodium: 77mgPotassium: 65mgFiber: 23gSugar: 43g

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