Italian Style Stuffed Bell Peppers are a great change from the traditional stuffed bell pepper. These peppers are a wonderful savory dish that you will enjoy preparing and enjoying for dinner.
Growing up my Mom often made stuffed bell peppers, we had a huge garden she would make stuffed bell peppers for dinner when the bell peppers were ready to pick. She always filled them with ground beef and rice, they were amazing. My Mom often made hers with cheddar cheese, and sometimes she would add some fresh corn. I have always remembered these wonderfully fresh tasting bell peppers. As an adult I have often wanted to recreate dishes I try to make something a little differently. I love Italian food, so I wanted to recreate these stuffed bell peppers with an Italian flair.
While my Mom always used green bell peppers, I really like colored peppers best. I love the red, orange, and yellow peppers. They are beautiful and quite honestly I love the different flavors that the colored bell peppers have over the regular green variety that these are often made. You don’t have to use the colored peppers you can use the green bell peppers. If when you cut the peppers they will not stand up straight it is perfectly ok to even the pepper by making a thin slice on the bottom to even the pepper. This way the pepper won’t lose too much of the juice of the pepper.
If you only want to use one type of meat you could use either just Italian sausage or just ground beef. The recipe will work just fine either way you make it. I typically use very inexpensive pasta sauce for this recipe. Whenever pasta sauce goes on sale I always I like to stock up on a few extra jars. There are so many ways you can use pasta sauce in many different recipes. You could also easily substitute Parmesan cheese with an Italian blend of cheese.
Italian Style Stuffed Bell Peppers
- 1/2 pound Italian sausage
- 1/2 pound ground chuck
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 2 teaspoons garlic chopped
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes if you like it hotter add more.
- 1 1/2 cups rice cooked
- 1 cup Parmesan cheese, divided use
- 14 ounces pasta sauce
- 11 ounces chopped tomatoes canned
- 4 large bell peppers or 6 small bell peppers
- In a large skillet on medium heat brown Italian sausage and ground chuck together. Season meats with salt and pepper. When the meat has cooked about halfway through add chopped onion and chopped garlic. Cook until the meat has browned and the onions have become tender. Add Italian seasoning, and red pepper flakes and stir to combine. When the meat has cooked through drain and reserve. In a bowl combine 1 jar of pasta has and canned crushed tomatoes. Stir to combine sauce. In a large bowl combine cooked drained meats, rice, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese. Add about 1/3 of the sauce and stir to combine and mix meat mixture well. Prepare peppers by slicing off the tops of the peppers, and hull out the inside membranes of the peppers. If the peppers are very large you may want to add some venting slits on the bottom of the peppers. Stuff peppers with meat mixture and place stuffed peppers in a large baking dish. Spoon half of the remaining sauce into the bottom of the baking dish, and top peppers with the remaining sauce. Top peppers with the remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese and bake at 350 for about 25 minutes.