These Cheesy Southwest Stuffed Peppers with Cilantro Avocado Sauce prove that vegetarian eats can be tasty and filling!
This weekend I’m picking up seeds to start our garden and I’m SO EXCITED! Each year we grow 2-3 varieties of peppers to feed my stuffed pepper addiction. Last year I ran out way earlier than expected so I fully intend on going overboard this year. Buckets of bell peppers, here I come!
Expect lots of pepper-spiked recipes this Spring/Summer. And today, duh.
Today we’re diving into a totally tasty Southwestern spin on my beloved Baked Bell Pepper Tacos. Just don’t tell my husband. I miiiight have eaten all 6 while he was out flying all weekend. Sorry babe!
Each overstuffed pepper is gluten-free and gloriously vegetarian! For extra protein you can add more beans to the mix (woot!), crumbled taco-seasoned tofu (umm… YUM!) or even break out the t-rex options if you’re a carnivore. Anything goes! I threw together a list of subs and swaps below the recipe so feel free to check that out for ideas.
Cheesy Southwest Stuffed Peppers with Spicy Cilantro Avocado Sauce
As written, this recipe makes 6 stuffed pepper boats and serves 2-3 adults. Feed a crowd by doubling the recipe or squirrel a few away for lunch the next day if you’re cooking for one. The sauce recipe makes a hah-uge serving (hooray leftovers!) and is great on everything from tortilla chips to cruidite to chicken!
Cheesy Southwest Stuffed Peppers with Cilantro Avocado Sauce
Yield 6 pepper boats
- 3 large bell peppers, any color
- 1/3 cup diced bell pepper (I cut up the bits that I sliced off the tops of the peppers when removing the stem) or jalapeño pepper for a kick!
- 2 cups yellow rice (cooked via pkg instructions)
- 1/3 cup corn (fresh, frozen, or canned)
- 1/3 cup onion
- 1/3 cup chopped tomato (totally optional)
- 2-4 oz grated pepper jack cheese, halved
- season to taste
Add any extra veggies/cheese/beans/protein as desired - go crazy!
Tasty Toppings (choose your favorites)
- shredded cheddar or pepper jack cheese
- sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
- fresh cilantro
- sliced jalapeños
- fresh or leftover grilled/roasted/sautéed veggies
- fresh chopped avocado
- pico de gallo
- salsa verde
- lime wedges, for a burst of citrus
- creamy cilantro avocado sauce, see below
Creamy Cilantro Avocado Sauce
2 TBSP cream cheese
1/2 cup sour cream or plain greek yogurt
1/2 bunch of cilantro, stems removed
2 jalapeno peppers (seeds/veins/stem removed)
2 large cloves of garlic
pinch of salt + pepper
- Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Cook rice via preferred method until fluffy.
- Slice each bell pepper in half. Hollow out each pepper, removing stem and seeds.
- Lay peppers on a baking sheet and cook for 8-10 minutes until al-tente or for 15-20 minutes for softer peppers.
- While the peppers bake, sauté your pepper, corn, and onion until tender. Set aside.
- Once rice is fluffy and finished, combine with sautéed veggies and half of your grated cheese. Season to taste with anything from salt and pepper to your favorite blend of taco seasonings.
- Top with remaining cheese and bake for an additional 10 minutes, then pile mile-high with all your favorite toppings! Anything goes!
special diets and swaps
- vegansaurus chefs: Snag your favorite plant based cheeze for the peppers or leave it out, tossing the veggies and rice in your favorite salsa before stuffing into the peppers. For the sauce, you can snag vegan sour cream and cream cheese (both super delicious!) or revamp it entirely with extra avocado and amped up herbs/spices to taste. Have fun with it!
- t-rex chefs: You can 110% add your favorite protein to the mix if desired. Shredded salsa chicken would be amazing here and you could even use pulled pork or rotisserie chicken. These would be a great way to revamp leftovers and turn them into something tasty!
- No rice? No problem! Try it with quinoa or cauliflower rice.