These stuffed peppers are a vegetarian dinner that everyone will love! They’re filled with rice and beans and topped with a melty layer of cheese.
These stuffed peppers deserve a spot in your dinner rotation! They’re the perfect combination of comforting and fresh, filled with a delicious blend of rice and beans and topped with melty cheese. Yes, they’re vegetarian, but these stuffed peppers are so tasty that everyone—meat eaters included!—will love them.
I’ve shared other vegetarian stuffed peppers on the blog before, but this NEW recipe is hands down my favorite. Here’s why:
- The filling is so darn flavorful. It starts with a base of hearty brown rice, with black beans for protein and corn kernels for crunch. Onions, garlic, and tomato paste make it nice and savory, and chili powder and cumin add earthy flavor and heat. YUM!
- It’s great for meal prep. Make the rice filling a day or two in advance and store it in an airtight container in the fridge. That way, you can quickly assemble the peppers for an easy weeknight meal.
- It’s healthy! These stuffed bell peppers are packed with plant-based protein, fiber, and, of course, fresh veggies. Seconds, anyone?
How to Make Stuffed Peppers
This vegetarian stuffed peppers recipe has three main steps:
- Roasting the peppers. Baking the peppers on their own before adding the filling gives them the perfect tender texture.
- Making the filling. It comes together in a few minutes on the stovetop.
- Assembling and baking the peppers. You’ll stuff the peppers with the rice filling and broil until the cheese is melted and browned.
Find the complete recipe with measurements below.
Roasting the Peppers
The first step in this recipe is roasting the peppers. It takes just 10 minutes, and it gives them the perfect tender texture.
Slice them in half vertically, remove the membranes and seeds, and place them cut side up on a baking sheet. Drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper, then bake at 450°F until the peppers are tender.
After roasting, tip out any liquid that pools inside the peppers, and set them aside while you make the filling.
Making the Filling
While the peppers roast, make the filling. If you don’t already have cooked brown rice on hand, start by preparing it. (See the tip below!)
When it’s ready, sauté the onions, jalapeño, and garlic until softened. Then, add the tomato paste and spices. Cook until the tomato paste darkens and the spices are fragrant, about 3 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the rice, beans, and corn. Add fresh lime juice and zest for a burst of bright flavor. Season to taste.
Cook the rice in advance. Brown rice takes nearly an hour to cook on the stove, so to streamline this recipe, I recommend cooking it in advance. The cooked rice will keep for up to 3 days in an airtight container in the fridge and in the freezer for up to 3 months. See my guide to how to cook brown rice for cooking instructions and tips!
Another option is to fully prepare the filling ahead of time. Store it in an airtight container in the fridge until you’re ready to assemble and bake the peppers.
Finally, assemble and bake!
Stuff the peppers with the rice mixture and top with the cheese.
Broil until the cheese is melted and browned, 5 to 10 minutes.
Garnish with fresh cilantro, and serve!
Find the complete recipe with measurements below.
Variation: Make vegan stuffed peppers!
Replace the cheese with your favorite vegan cheese shreds. You could also skip the cheese and serve the peppers with sliced avocado and drizzles of chipotle sauce. No need to broil the peppers in that case.
Stuffed Peppers Serving Suggestions
Want to make these vegetarian stuffed peppers even more flavorful? Serve them with sliced avocado or guacamole and your favorite salsa!
The peppers are a satisfying meal on their own, but if you’re looking for something to serve on the side, you can’t go wrong with any of these recipes:
Store leftover peppers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. They reheat perfectly in the microwave!
More Easy Vegetarian Recipes
If you love these stuffed bell peppers, try one of these easy vegetarian recipes next:
Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers
These healthy stuffed peppers are filled with a flavorful mix of rice, beans, and vegetables and topped with melty cheese. They’re naturally gluten-free; see the notes below to make them vegan.
- 4 red bell peppers, halved lengthwise, seeds and membranes removed
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil, plus more for drizzling
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 1 jalapeño pepper, stemmed and finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- ¾ teaspoon sea salt, plus more for sprinkling
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1½ cups cooked brown rice
- 1½ cups cooked black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, plus wedges for serving
- 1 teaspoon lime zest
- 1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese*
- ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
- Salsa, optional, for serving
- Avocado, or guacamole, optional, for serving
Prevent your screen from going dark
Preheat the oven to 450°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place the peppers, cut side up, on the baking sheet. Drizzle with avocado oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake for 10 minutes, or until tender. Tip out and discard any liquid that pools inside the peppers. Set the peppers aside while you prepare the filling.
Heat the avocado oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, jalapeño, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until softened. Add the tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper and cook for 3 minutes, or until the tomato paste darkens and the spices are fragrant.
Remove from the heat and stir in the brown rice, black beans, corn, and lime juice and zest. Season to taste.
Fill the peppers with the rice mixture and top with the cheese. Place in a large baking dish and broil for 5 to 10 minutes, or until the cheese is browned.
Top with fresh cilantro and serve with salsa and avocado, if desired, and lime wedges for squeezing.