Stuffed with nutrition, these turkey and quinoa filled bell peppers provide vegetables, lean protein, and healthy grains all in one nice little package. To save time, make the stuffing ahead. When it’s time for dinner, stuff the peppers and bake. Serve with a big tossed green salad for more healthy vegetable balance. For a vegetarian dish, skip the turkey and add more cooked quinoa, or substitute your favorite bean. See notes in the post. 

Servings: 4

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup (140 grams) uncooked quinoa (red, white or tri-color blend)
  • 4 large bell peppers, preferably red or orange
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup (133 grams) chopped onion
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 12 ounces (340 grams) lean ground turkey
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin [1]
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger (I use the organic jarred puree [2])
  • a few good pinches of kosher or sea salt
  • a small pinch of ground black pepper
  • 1-14 ounce (411 grams) can of petite diced tomatoes (not drained)
  • 2 tablespoons (20 grams) dried currants
  • 4 ounces (113 grams) feta cheese, crumbled or cubed very small
  • 1/4 cup (13 grams) finely chopped parsley

Directions

  1. Start by cooking your quinoa. For 3/4 of a cup (140 grams) dry quinoa, it will take 1 1/2 cups (355 ml) of water. Be sure to rinse quinoa well under cold running water if it is not pre-rinsed. Bring it to a boil, then cover and turn heat down to low.  Cook 18 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to finish by steaming 5-10 minutes more. Fluff with a fork and set aside.
  2. Prepare your peppers to be stuffed. If the peppers are round and fat, cut of the top to open up the pepper. If the shape is long and narrow, do not cut off the top. Cut the pepper in half lengthwise from stem to bottom. With a sharp paring knife and your fingers, trim out the ribs and seeds until the pepper is clean inside. If they do not sit flat, trim a tiny bit off the bottom so they are stable. Be careful not to cut through the pepper.
  3. Heat oil in a medium sauté pan or skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until it is soft and translucent. Turn heat down to medium low if it starts to brown. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute, stirring. Add the turkey (or beans), cumin, ginger, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring to break up the turkey, until the pink is just gone. Stir in the tomatoes with their juice, currants, feta and quinoa.
  4. Fill peppers firmly with the turkey-quinoa mixture. Mound it a little on top. Place peppers in a shallow casserole or baking dish, cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees (177 C) oven until hot all of the way through, or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees (74C), about 35 -40 minutes. Serve as soon as possible  Alternatively, cool completely, cover the peppers and refrigerate. To serve the next day, heat covered in a 350 oven until hot.

Notes – For 2 servings: make the entire recipe for the stuffing. Use what you need and freeze the extra for future stuffed peppers. That’s a good time saving step.