Friday, April 24, 2015

Enchilada Stuffed Peppers

I'm no stranger to enchiladas or stuffed peppers and since I have made it a life goal to turn all my favorite dishes into a low-carb version of themselves, I decided to see what would happen if I stuffed a pepper with enchilada filling.  And you know what?  I am really glad I did.  The bell pepper is such a wonderfully healthy and delicious vessel for just about anything, so much so that you won't even miss the tortillas.  Especially when they are stuffed with so much flavor and goodness.  This a completely  versatile recipe as far as what meat you choose if any and can also be made dairy free.  I love to use my Crock-Pot Salsa Chicken and mix it with black beans, corn and roasted chillies.  However, you can use ground beef or turkey or quinoa or rice and any beans you prefer.  The idea behind this recipe to allow us to enjoy a healthier version of enchiladas with any kind of fillings.  Not only is this seriously easy to make, but is gorgeous and makes enough to feed a family of four, with leftovers.  Give this one a shot next time you have enchilada like tonight, right?

This is what you need:

5 Bell Peppers (any color)
1 lb of Meat or 2-3 cups of Rice or Quinoa (any meat you like, salsa chicken, ground meat or turkey)
2 cups Enchilada Sauce (any kind)
1 can of Black Beans (rinsed and drained)
1 can of Corn (drained)
1 small can of Fire Roasted Chillies
1 cup of Sour Cream (Light or Greek Yogurt works great too)
1 cup of Shredded Cheese
1/2 cup Chopped Green Onions
1 tbsp Olive Oil
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Pepper

Optional Garnish
Sour Cream

This is what you do:
Cook or prepare the meat however you want.  If you are using ground beef or turkey, cook and season with taco seasonings for best flavor.  Once meat is prepared, preheat oven to 375 degrees and slice the peppers in half.  Remove the stem, ribs and seeds and season with olive oil, salt and pepper then place in a glass baking dish.  Mix the cooked meat, cans of rinsed and drained beans and corn, the can of fire roasted chillies, 1/2 cup shredded cheese and the green onions in a large bowl.  The add 1 cup of enchilada sauce and 1 cup of sour sour cream to the bowl.  Mix well and scoop mixture into each pepper, fill really well.  Top with the remaining cheese and back at 375 degrees for 25 minutes.  Let sit for a few minutes, top with the garnishes of your choice and serve!
Prep Time: 20-25 minutes if cooking ground meat or rice.  (Salsa chicken takes 3-4 hours in the crock-pot, you can prepare this ahead of time)
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Serves: 5 People, 1 full pepper each

First thing to do is prepare the meat or vegetarian filling you want to use.   preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Ground turkey or beef works perfect in this cooked and seasoned with classic taco seasoning or just salt, pepper and garlic powder.  I use salsa chicken that I prepare either the same day or a day ahead of making this recipe.  It is just so easy and tastes fantastic.  Get the recipe here!

Now, preheat the oven to 375 degrees and slice the peppers in half.  Remove the stems, ribs and seeds.  Then season by drizzling 1 tbsp olive oil, 1/2 tsp salt and pepper each and place in a glass baking dish.
 I just pop each stem out by pulling it backwards.
All seasoned up, because that is what I do. 

Now, drain and rinse the beans and corn well. 

Add them to a large bowl with the cooked meat of your choice.  Also add the fire roasted chillies, green onions and 1/2 cup of cheese.

Mix well and add 1 cup of enchilada sauce and 1 cup of sour cream, mix everything together.
I taste it at this point and adjust the seasonings if needed.

Now fill each pepper with the mixture.  You can fill them up pretty good.

Then pour the remaining enchilada sauce or 1 cup over all of the peppers and add the remaining shredded cheese to the top.
That is my 5th pepper to the right.  Couldn't fit it in the baking dish Math games, are not my strong suit.

Pop them in the oven for 25 minutes.  I like to turn the broiler on for a minute or two right at the end to brown the cheese. 

Let them sit for a few minutes and get your toppings ready.
My toppings of choice.

Now it is time to serve and eat.  This truly is a fantastically filling and delicious meal that feels like comfort food but is actually really healthy.  

You will not even notice the tortillas are missing.  So easy and guilt-free!  Let me know what you think and how you ended up preparing them!