stuffed peppers

Lentil and Brown Rice Stuffed Peppers

Lentil and Brown Rice Stuffed Peppers

A friend was in town and stopping by. I wanted to offer her dinner. Since I know she doesn’t eat meat- I knew we’d be going vegetarian. I had just picked up some beautiful sweet peppers at the local produce market. I knew I would use them in the dish. Stuffed peppers seemed like a fun way to go. I precooked most of the ingredients so I wouldn’t have to watch them too carefully once in the oven. That way, we were free to visit. I did top them with cheese- but you could omit the cheese, if you prefer.

Lentil and Brown Rice Stuffed Peppers

1 onion, chopped


¾ c. uncooked brown rice- I used brown jasmine rice

Water or vegetable stock – probably around 3 cups or a bit more

¾ c. lentils, rinsed and drained

2 c. peeled and chopped fresh tomatoes- or 2 c. canned tomatoes

2 – 3 sweet peppers, cut in half and seeded

3 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped

¼ c. Marsala wine

2 T. apple cider vinegar

¼ c. chopped parsley

2 T. fresh chopped basil

1 T. fresh oregano or 1 t. dried

1 t. chopped rosemary

Hot sauce to taste

Salt and pepper to taste

Romano or Parmesan cheese- optional

In soup pot, heat oil and cook onion until it gets tender and a little golden. Add the rice and stir to coat the rice in the oil. Toast the rice a couple of minutes. Add 2 cups stock or water to cover the rice, and then bring up to a simmer. Reduce heat and cook, covered, for about 20 minutes. While rice is cooking, place the peppers in a pot of boiling water and cook for 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and drain peppers. After the rice has been cooking for 20 minutes, add the lentils, garlic and tomatoes, wine, vinegar and seasonings and continue cooking, covered, until the rice and lentils are tender, about 25 more minutes Add more stock, if needed. Rice mixture should be a little runny. Place peppers, cut side up in a shallow baking dish. Spoon in the lentil mixture, dividing it among the 4 pepper halves. Cover dish with foil and bake in a 350 degree oven for 30-40 minutes. Mixture will be heated through and peppers will be tender. Serve as is – or top with some cheese and return to the oven until cheese melts- about 5 minutes. Makes 4 pepper halves.

Stuffed Zucchini

Stuffed Zucchini

Stuffed Zucchini

I got this over sized zucchini from my friend Carl. It was a round zucchini that had gotten to the size of a small pumpkin. I wanted to use it for dinner so I decided to hollow it out and stuff it. My friend Kat was coming over for dinner and I knew she’d be open to trying out my experiment. She’s pretty open to trying things out. I hollowed it out and lightly salted in the inside. I was wary to put uncooked meat in there because I wasn’t sure if it would get cooked through. Same thing for the rice.  I ended up cooking ground turkey and seasoning it with cumin, oregano, paprika, salt  and a little cayenne. I cooked the rice in a mixture of beef stock with some butter and fresh parsley. Tossed that mixture together and put it in the zucchini. I also added some mozzarella cheese after every few scoops of the filling.  I had some marinara sauce so I added a bit of that for moisture and a chopped onion that I had sauteed in oil.

I had no idea on how long it would take so I set in in at 350 and covered the top with foil. It was done in about 90 minutes. The zucchini was still firm but tender enough to eat.


Ready for the oven

Ready for the oven

Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed Peppers









I had some extra filling so I made some stuffed peppers, too. I split the peppers and boiled them a couple of minutes to soften. I filled them and baked them, also covered in foil for about 45 minutes- then removed the foil and baked 15 minutes longer.


The meal was a big hit. I could have used any over sized zucchini. It was a great way to use something that at first might have been thought of as unusable, except perhaps shredded for zucchini bread.





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