Ground chicken stuffed peppers are an easy dinner meal! They are an excellent way to sneak in some extra veggies as well. These cheese filled, Italian seasoned stuffed peppers are bursting with flavor and may quickly become your family's new favorite meal!
For the longest time, I always avoided making stuffed peppers because it looked too time consuming. And then one day, I made them. It turns out, they were actually really easy to make! I made these and had all the prep dishes done in less than an hour!
Even if you don't love peppers, try these! The filling is a mixture of meat, rice, cheese and spices. Kind of like a big cheesy casserole, stuffed inside a pepper.
If you make these, let me know how they turned out! I'd love to hear from you or see your pictures!
- Bell Peppers: Red, orange, yellow or green. Any color is fine! Red, yellow or orange peppers will be a little bit more sweetness than a green pepper. Peppers that are more round in shape(versus long) will stand upright in the pan much easier once stuffed. This isn't a requirement, however, and no matter what the shape, they will taste just as good.
- Ground Chicken: Ground chicken that is made with 93% lean meat is going to have a lower fat content. Any type of ground meat will work in this recipe. Other meat options are ground turkey or ground beef.
- Rice: Choose either brown rice or white rice. Brown rice provides more nutrients and fiber.
- Parmesan Cheese: I used the canned grated Parmesean cheese and they tasted great! An alternative is fresh shredded Parmesean cheese.
- Garlic Cloves & Onion: Cook with the meat to add extra flavor.
- Mozzarella Cheese: adds flavor and good texture to the pepper mixture.
- Seasonings-Italian, garlic powder, onion powder, salt (optional) and pepper: all provide good flavor!
Stuffed Peppers Nutrition
These ground chicken stuffed peppers contain 340 calories per pepper and 27 grams of protein per pepper. They have 26 grams of carbohydrate and 14 grams of fat per pepper.
Bell peppers have a lot of health benefits: they are loaded with vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin C! Fun fact: Vitamin C helps your body better absorb iron!
Stuffed peppers provide carbs from the rice, protein from the meat and a veggie source from the pepper and tomato. This is a great way to sneak in some extra vegetables for those who don't enjoy eating them plain.
These peppers will keep in the refrigerator for 2-3 days after cooking. Store in an airtight container. Do not freeze; the pepper will become soggy.
Ground chicken stuffed peppers are a great item to meal prep for an easy dinner. Simply make the meat/rice mixture the night before, and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. When ready to cook, boil the peppers, stuff them with the meat mixture and pop them in the oven. Dinner will be ready in no time!
- Any type of ground meat can be used. I used ground chicken in this recipe, however other ideas are ground turkey, ground beef or ground sausage
Low Calorie Version:
- Use a lean ground meat that is 93% fat free or 97% fat free. This will decrease the fat and calorie content.
- Decrease the amount of cheese used to reduce the fat and calories.
Sneak in Veggies:
- Add in extra veggies to the rice/meat mixture. Chop up carrots into small fine pieces, or add small pieces of green peppers or diced tomatoes.
Let’s make some stuffed peppers!
Cutting the Peppers
Slice the top off the pepper by using a knife and cutting around the pepper in a circular motion. I like to slightly twist the top of the pepper once cut, which helps all the seeds stay connected and makes it really easy to remove them. Remove any extra seeds inside.
You can also remove the fleshy, lighter color rib that’s sticks out in the middle of the peppers. It’s easiest to do this with your fingers. This helps so you can add more stuffing to the insides! Keep the rest of the pepper intact, as this will hold in the stuffing.
Precooking the Peppers
The peppers must be slightly precooked before stuffing them to ensure they are tender when eaten. Sometimes if the pepper is just cooked in the oven without precooking it, it does not get tender enough. Boiling helps to soften the peppers so that they can cut easily with a fork when eaten. To precook the peppers, submerge them completely in boiling water for 5 minutes. Don’t overcook however, or they will turn mushy!
Make your mixture
While the peppers are boiling, mix up your ingredients that will be used to stuff the peppers. Combine the cooked meat, rice, cheeses, spices and tomato sauce and mix until well blended.
How to Stuff the Peppers
Using a spoon, add the rice and meat mixture to the inside of the pepper. Fill the pepper entirely to the top. You may have to use a spoon to maneuver the mixture into all outer spaces of the pepper.
Cooking the Peppers
The stuffed peppers will cook in the oven for about 20 minutes. After the peppers have cooked for 20 minutes, turn the oven to Broil and cook for 2 minutes. This will give the cheese a slightly brown color.
Other Favorite Recipes
Ground Chicken Stuffed Peppers
- 6 bell peppers any color
- 1 pound ground chicken 93% lean
- 1 clove garlic chopped
- ¼ onion chopped
- 1.5 cup brown rice cooked
- 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 16 ounces tomato sauce
- ½ cup Parmesan canned or fresh
- 1.5 cup Mozzarella cheese shredded (divided)
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Spray a 9x9 inch baking dish with pan release spray and set aside.
- Wash peppers and cut the tops off, removing all steeds and inner membranes.
- Fill a large saucepan with water and bring to a boil. (Add enough water to the sauce pan so that peppers will be completely covered when placed inside).
- Add peppers into the boiling water and push down so that they are completely submerged. Boil for 5 minutes, remove from heat and drain.
Stuffed Pepper Filling
- Combine the ground chicken, chopped onion and minced garlic in a medium sauce pan. Cook over medium heat until chicken is cooked (it should be 165F).
- Drain any excess liquid or fat from the chicken. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the cooked chicken, cooked brown rice, Italian seasoning, onion powder, garlic powder, tomato sauce and Parmesean cheese. Mix until combined.
- Stir in 1 cup of the shredded Mozzarella cheese and mix until combined.
Stuffing the Peppers
- Set the par-boiled peppers upright in your prepared baking dish. (Sometimes it helps to lean them up against one another so they stand upright).
- Take the prepared stuffing mixture and fill each pepper to the very top. (Use your spoon to make sure the stuffing fills all areas inside the pepper).
- Top peppers with the remaining mozzarella cheese.
- Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes, turn oven up to Broil setting, and bake for 2 more minutes.
- Remove from oven and serve warm.