Stuffed peppers are a classic, traditionally filled with ground meat, rice, tomato sauce, and baked with a layer of cheese, and yes, I'm aware of how delicious that can be. However, the reinvented version I'm featuring is loaded with far more bioavailable nutrients, with the same amount of protein, and significantly less unhealthy fats.
If you are interested in taking the short cut of purchasing store bought salsa, in lieu of creating your own pico de gallo, I strongly urge that you purchase a low sodium, low sugar, organic option. I will always advise that homemade is best, though!
serving size: 4-8
total time: 1 hour
- 1 cup quinoa
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 4 large bell peppers, halved, seeds removed
- 1 cup pico de gallo or store bought salsa, plus more for serving
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 tablespoon tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 can low sodium black beans
- 2 cups chopped kale
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 clove garlic
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 large tomato, finely diced
- 1/2 cup red onion, finely diced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 tablespoon cilantro, finely chopped
- sea salt to taste
2 avocados, sliced lengthwise 1/4 inch thick
Set the oven to 400 degrees. Bring the vegetable stock to a simmer in a small saucepan and add the the quinoa. In the meantime, prep the pico de gallo by combining all ingredients into a small bowl and mix until all components are evenly combined. Set aside until it's time to compose the peppers. Sautee kale in olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper in a pan over medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Set aside to cool.
When quinoa is done cooking, place it in a small bowl to cool in the freezer for the next 3-5 minutes. Lightly coat the exterior of each bell pepper half in olive oil and place them in a baking dish, face up. In a medium sized bowl, combine cumin, chili, and garlic powder with the black beans, kale and 1 cup of pico de gallo/salsa. Remove the quinoa from the freezer and add it to the bean/kale mixture, ensuring all ingredients are evenly combined. Generously stuff each bell pepper half with the quinoa/bean/kale mixture and cover with foil. Place the peppers in the oven for 25 minutes. Remove the foil and allow to bake for another 5 minutes. Serve with sliced avocado on top, and more pico de gallo/salsa on the side.