Roasted red peppers filled with spiced ground turkey and quinoa. A nutrient powerhouse of colorful vegetables stuffed with lean protein.
I get a lot of requests for healthy and simple meals. I know how crazy it can get as you manage your busy schedule, but I’m here to help you with a fun recipe to keep everyone nourished and energized! This recipe for stuffed peppers is an easy way to pack a balanced meal into edible bowls!
Each roasted bell pepper is filled to the top with ground turkey, quinoa, vegetables and Mexican spices for a little kick. Let’s get roasting!
Quinoa is my go-to seed because it’s packed with protein! It’s so versatile because flavors get easily infused within minutes. One of my favorite vegetarian sides is my Mexican spiced vegetable quinoa. A lightbulb went off when I was thinking of what to stuff these peppers with and I thought this would be such a tasty filling. I could eat it straight out of the bowl (and I have, ha!).
If you know me by now, I’m all about adding as many colorful ingredients into my recipes because of all of the phytonutrient benefits. In this mixture of quinoa, you’ve got corn, zucchini, tomatoes, black beans, green onions, and jalapenos. A nutritional powerhouse!
If you are looking to make this a little more of a hearty meal, some lean ground turkey is a nice addition. I added a touch of earthy spices like cumin and paprika to the turkey to add layers of flavor. I combined this with the quinoa mixture and stuffed a generous portion into each bell pepper. You can absolutely leave out the meat if desired.
Check out these roasted beauties! I like to add some extra topping for even more flavor and extra texture. I like to have little dishes filled with cotija cheese, diced avocados, cilantro, and green chile sauce so my family can add whatever toppings we want. If you like to meal plan, make these on the weekend and reheat for a quick weekday dish. What other tasty ingredients would you use to stuff the roasted peppers?
How do you make the taste of quinoa less bitter?
A simple thing you can do to make cooked quinoa appetizing is to rinse it in a fine-mesh strainer under running water for about a minute, then allow it to drain. When you skip this step, a natural bitter coating on the seed is left on the surface called saponin. It’s a mildly bitter flavor but distinctive in taste. To enhance the flavor you can add extra spices like salt, cumin, garlic or herbs, or flavored liquids like broths, stocks, and soy sauce. This will lessen any lingering bitterness that may have stuck around.
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Stuffed Peppers with Turkey & Quinoa
- ¾ cup quinoa, uncooked
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon shallots, diced
- ½ jalapeño, seeded and minced
- ½ cup zucchini, diced, ¼-inch dice
- ½ cup black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup tomatoes, diced, canned
- ½ cup corn kernels, fresh, canned or frozen
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- ¾ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 ¼ cups unsalted chicken stock, or broth
- 1 tablespoon green onions, thinly sliced
- 3 large bell peppers, cut in half, seeds removed
- Rinse quinoa with water thoroughly before cooking.
- Add quinoa, garlic, shallots, jalapeno, zucchini, black beans, tomatoes, corn, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, and chicken stock to a large pan. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to medium-low.
- Simmer until quinoa is cooked and liquid is absorbed, about 25 to 30 minutes. Turn off heat and allow to sit covered for 5 minutes.
- Season with additional salt and pepper as needed. Fluff quinoa and add green onions. Meanwhile, cook the turkey.
- Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat, add 1 tablespoon olive oil and allow to heat up.
- Add ground turkey and cook for about 5 to 6 minutes until no longer pink, stirring continuously and breaking down into smaller chunks.
- Season with salt, pepper, cumin, and paprika, stirring to combine. Add more seasoning as desired. Once the quinoa is done cooking, add turkey to the quinoa and stir to combine.
- Pre-heat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease the bottom of a baking dish with oil or cooking spray, large enough to hold the peppers.
- Firmly pack each pepper with about ½ cup to ¾ cup of turkey quinoa filling. Bake in the center of the oven for 20 minutes.
- Turn the heat up to 375°F and bake another 10 minutes, until peppers are tender. If desired, broil the stuffed peppers for 2 to 3 minutes to achieve a crisp top.
- Serve peppers with desired toppings.
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