quinoa-stuffed peppers. i die.

This is dinner tonight at O My House. We are having two young missionaries over for dinner and I thought I would make something that they probably don’t make for themselves (read: so pasta was out). It is absolutely delicious, and I mean delicious. So yummy in fact that DanO was once a quinoa skeptic and this totally converted him. Healthy food that’s tasty for the win! Plus? It looks pretty and impressive but it’s not. Promise. If I can make it betwixt rounds of “That’s not for OBaby!” and “Let’s keep our feet on the ground, buddy.” You can totally handle it.

(PS: Why did no one tell me that swiftly on the heels of walking would come climbing?! O THE CLIMBING!!)

(PPS: These pictures are from when I made it last time, not of the meal for tonight. That would get cold and be gross.)

My quinoa package says to rinse your grains before using them, so I did, but I have also since made it without rinsing. (Shhh don’t tell the quinoa people.)


After rinsing, I chopped stuff.



Then I sauteed the chopped stuff.



Then I added copious amounts of garlic to the sautéing stuff.


This picture is mostly of steam, but you get the idea.

O My Olfactory Sense did the house smell good. I was considering sautéing onions and garlic every night just for the aroma, except how depressing would it be for DanO to come home to that smell and then get served a sandwich? (Not that I have ever served sandwiches for dinner. Last week.)


Then I added the seed originally grown in South and Central America that has a high protein value, complete with all eight of the essential amino acids needed for tissue development in humans (aka: quinoa) to the mix along with the tomato sauce and spices.


Then I let it simmer for 20 minutes, but don’t think that I got to relax for those 20 minutes, no. There was more to do.


I prepped the peppers and promptly placed them in the piping pot.

I *might* have stood on top of my counter to take this picture. You’re welcome.

While those boil, the quinoa will puff up and be soft, that’s when you add the beans and maple syrup. (I give you permission to be generous with the maple syrup. Just saying.)


By the way, did you know that it is near impossible to take pictures of one’s self whilst stuffing peppers with quinoa mix? It is. Take my word for it.

So you stuff the peppers, put them in a casserole dish (or hot dish as de Minnehsoooootans call them) and pour some more of the tomato sauce over top.


Bake them for a while and stuff at a temperature and whatnot.


The cheese. The recipe I found did not call for cheese, but I’m pretty sure that everything calls for cheese.


(The cheese melted soonly after taking this picture, but we also eated them soonly after taking this picture, so I do not have evidence of said melting)

(Sorry Dad that I just used the word eated. It was for comedic value.)

The actual recipe:

Quinoa and Black Bean stuffed Bell Peppers:

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups finely chopped fresh mushrooms
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
1/4 cup water
3/4 cup quinoa
4 large bell peppers
1 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 to 1.5 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

In a saucepan over medium heat, sauté the onions in olive oil for 3 to 5 minutes, until onions are translucent. Add garlic and mushrooms; sauté about 5 minutes, until the mushrooms have released their moisture. Stir in the chili powder and salt. Add the quinoa and 1 cup of the tomato sauce (reserve the rest) and the water; lower the heat and cover, and simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring once.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350º F (175° C), and prepare the peppers. Boil a pot of water. Cut the tops off the pepper and remove the seeds. Boil the peppers for 5 minutes, and then drain them.

Combine the beans and maple syrup with the cooked quinoa mixture. Stuff each pepper with the filling, and stand them upright in a baking dish. Pour the remaining tomato sauce over the peppers, and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven; sprinkle tops with cheese, and serve.

30 Responses to “quinoa-stuffed peppers. i die.”

  1. Johanna

    Yum! I totally just sent this to A. We buy the frozen quinoa at Trader Joe’s and love it. So far we’ve been intimidated by the dry stuff at CostCo, but I think this is just the recipe to test it out!

  2. Gussy

    yum-o! i love me some stuffed peppers <3

    PS. i made dinner last night for the first time since moving in Saturday. sigh. sure was amazing to be back in the kitchen! :]

  3. Erika

    ummm i know what is for dinner tonight. i might actually have time to cook courtesy of my “sick day”.

    PS. all i can think about EVERY TIME i eat quinoa is that lovely little image you once planted in my head. do you remember what you thought they looked like?? haha.

  4. Suzanne

    I was totally on board right up until the maple syrup. Now I’m just oddly confused and fascinated and hungry. Does it TASTE like maple syrup? Because I’m not so sure I want my peppers to taste like tree sap.

    The rest of it sounds great though! And the quinoa actually looks less scary than it sounds.

    • AllisonO

      I mean… it tastes sweet and whatnot, but I wouldn’t call it at all tree sappish. You could probably exchange syrup for brown sugar if you’re concerned.

  5. Katherine

    Those look so amazing. I do believe I will have to borrow this recipe…and tell the hubs the quinoa is pasta…you know, like cous cous, honey.

    PS We have the same pots and pans.

  6. Gina

    Ohhhhh, I love quinoa and am always on the hunt for recipes! Will definitely be trying this … possibly tomorrow night!


  7. Amanda

    How do you manage to be entertaining and funny while explaining a recipe?! You rock. And the pictures were great. And I just e-mailed the recipe to myself so I don’t forget about it (mommy brain, anyone?). :) Looks delicious!

  8. Lainers

    Quinoa is on the stove as I read this post…I’m glad you haven’t lost touch with your NW upbringing. :) I’m substituting the quinoa instead of pasta in a cold greek “pasta” salad…sooooo delicious also. Can’t wait to try this one! Ummm, see you in 3 days!!!!

  9. Meg - Something New

    There are so many reasons why this would be my husband’s new favorite recipe. This is begging to be made! PS your photo gymnastics are much appreciated! They turned out pretty :)

  10. Jen

    This looks amazing. I’ve been making quinoa and veggies each week since school started but I never thought to use them in a stuffing!

    Now here’s my question- does the quinoa really fluff by just simmering in the tomato sauce, or do you make it like you would normally (just like rice, 2 to 1 water ratio) and then add it. I’m scared to just throw it in with tomato sauce!

    Oh, and by the way, I always read your blog, I just never comment! I have my own if you’re interested! http://www.squishygirl.com

    Thanks for the great recipe!

  11. Sara

    This dinner looks delicious!! I started using quinoa when my daughter and I found out we have a gluten allergy. Quinoa is my favorite non-wheat grain, but I’ve only been using the pasta. I haven’t actually tried the dried quinoa to make anything. Thanks so much for sharing!! I love your blog, I’m from MN (born and raised in Buffalo) but I am now a NM girl- since 1994. I really enjoy reading your stories, it takes me back to when my kids were babies (they’re now 8, 10, and 13 -holy teenager!!!)

  12. Lisa

    Yum! I love quinoa, I’ll have to try these :)
    I usually rinse my quinoa, too, because I’m overly cautious like that. I believe most packaged versions are prerinsed though so it shouldn’t be absolutely necessary. I’ve forgotten a time or two and didn’t notice any bitterness.

  13. jackie

    made this last night and LOVEEED it! my husband isnt a big fan of quinoa but he liked this :)

  14. Caitlin

    Made this tonight for my husband and parents, and everyone thought it was delicious =). Thank you!


Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>