Stuffed Bell Peppers-An American classic

Food culture fascinates me and this is where my connection to everything food begins.

I have often wondered if Americans really have a cuisine that they can call their own.  A cuisine that rivals and matches the bragging rights of other world cuisines.  My response?  Yes, we do, devoid of canned Spam, McDonald’s, Burger King, Kentucky Fried Chicken and the other voluminous food chains with a drive thru.  Americans do indeed have a diverse food cuisine.  Our Native American ingredients included tomatoes, corn, yams, sweet potatoes and a variety of beans. These ingredients were unknown in Europe and Africa (Yes folks, spaghetti sauce is a relatively new food dish making it’s appearance in Italian cookbooks around 1790).  Early European, Spanish and African influences and modern day immigration to the United States provided a wealth of available ingredients, flavors and cuisines that over the generations have fused together and become American.

Stuffing vegetables is a traditional practice around the world. Stuffing vegetables in American cuisine usually involves the bell pepper.

Here is my personal recipe for American style stuffed peppers.

American Style Stuffed Bell Peppers
Serves 4

2 tablespoons, extra virgin olive oil
1lb. good quality chorizo sausage, crumbled (squeezed out of the casing)
1 large onion, chopped finely
3 large garlic cloves, chopped finely
A handful of fresh parsley, chopped finely
4 large bell peppers, tops cut away, bottoms trimmed slightly to stand up flat, and seeds removed (note: I use the peppers from the bottom trim to add to the mixture.)
15.5 oz black beans, drained
1 cup long grained rice
8 oz. good crumbling cheese such as feta, or Mexican crumbling cheese
Salt and pepper
Note: Salsa or a rich flavored tomato sauce is a good choice for topping the peppers while baking.

1.  Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
2.  In a large saute pan, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add crumbled sausage, onion, chopped leftover bell pepper, and garlic.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Cook until soft, about 5-6 minutes.
Note: Continue to break up the sausage while cooking with a spoon.

3.  Add rice and saute for 3-5 minutes.  
4.  Add water (approximately 1 cup), black beans and parsley.
5.  Turn heat to low, cover and cook for 5 minutes.
Note: This is a good time to adjust seasonings to taste

6.  Pour just enough water to cover the bottom of the baking dish about 1/8-inch.
7.  Stuff the bell peppers with the rice mixture, place on the cut off tops, and place in the baking dish.
8.  Cover tightly with aluminum foil ( to allow the peppers to steam).  Bake peppers until the peppers are tender, and the filling is heated through approximately 1 to 1-1/2 hours.

54 thoughts on “Stuffed Bell Peppers-An American classic

  1. I love this tasty filling a lot but it is nearly the same as I would do. It is a lot Belgian too!!Terrific food! 🙂


  2. I love your recipe Velva. I've never been a fan of stuffed bell peppers. Too tomatoey…in a bitter green bell pepper. love the sweeter peppers you've used here and the mixture of chorizo et al…yum.


  3. What lovely photos and a great recipe; love the idea of adding feta;and I much prefer your version to others I have een; so I have to keep one; thanks.Rita


  4. Velva, these are b.e.a.u.t.i.f.u.l. as well as having some of my favorite ingredients! I love chorizo and black beans! Nice take on the stuffed bell pepper!!


  5. Great recipe! I have always been itching to get away from the usual meat and rice mixture without coming up with a definite plan on how; love the addition of black beans here, an assertive taste that can withstand the peppers.


  6. the stuffing looks so beautiful!!! I love stuffed bell peppers even though my husband won't eat it, I haven't made them for myself for a while….you have inspired me to do so…with this recipe of course!


  7. I have been wanting to try an updated recipe for stuffed peppers for awhile now. The only one I have is from a church cookbook that utilizes tomato soup. Love the idea of feta and chorizo.


  8. Velva, I didn't even realized that the American doesn't has it's own cuisine. But I bet your stuffed pepper will make it to the best American cuisine. Happy weekend, dear.Blessings, Kristy


  9. une excellente recette il y a tout ce que j'aime dans cette farce et l'ajout de la fêta ça doit être délicieux mes complimentsbonne soirée


  10. I love how you can stuff a bell pepper with just about any palette of flavors and it will come out deliciously! This mexican flavor combo sounds absolutely wonderful!


  11. OH SHUT UP! (nicely said)I went to bed last night thinking of stuffing the mini-sweet peppers I have with a rice, chorizo, cheese mixture. That was literally what I was thinking through as I fell asleep.And now it would be unoriginal. Thanks a lot (ha ha) j/k, I'll still be making them, yours look delicious.


  12. I love stuffed bell peppers and I think it's such a wonderful idea to add rice to the stuffing! We also have something similar in Germany but the pepper is normally stuffed with ground meat.


  13. How beautiful in the yellow and orange bell peppers and I love your southwest take on these! I've had a hard time getting my husband to eat stuffed peppers but I know he would love yours with the chorizo and black beans. Great recipe!


  14. Hi Velva! Thanks for stopping by my blog and following. I've been following yours for a while and love your posts:) I warmly remember my mother's stuffed peppers and have never mastered the recreation. Looks like I found my recipe!Cheers,Jenn


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