Beef and Rice Stuffed Bell Peppers


These stuffed bell peppers with rice are worth a try! Ninety-four percent of all stuffed peppers are made because there's leftover rice around. You can adjust this recipe in many different ways: the herbs, the meat, etc. Any ground meat works: lamb, pork, or an equal mixture of sausage and beef is fantastic. I used lean beef, but I recommend trying 1 pound beef with 1/2 pound pork sausage.

Prep Time:
20 mins
Cook Time:
1 hrs 20 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 40 mins


  • 6 bell peppers

  • 3 cups chunky tomato sauce, divided

  • ½ onion, very thinly sliced

  • 1 cup beef broth

  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

  • 1 ½ pounds lean ground beef

  • 1 ½ cups cooked rice

  • ½ cup freshly shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

  • ¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 teaspoons salt

  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, divided


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

  2. Slice peppers 1/2-inch from the top; cut out stems and set aside tops. Cut core from the inside of peppers and strip away any seeds. Cut off a thin slice from the bottoms so peppers can stand upright. Poke about 4 tiny holes in the bottoms to let juices drain.

  3. Pour 2 1/2 cups tomato sauce into a 9x13-inch baking dish. Add onion, beef broth, and red pepper flakes; spread out mixture evenly over the bottom. Set bell peppers upright in the dish.

  4. Combine ground beef, cooked rice, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, 2 tablespoons tomato sauce, 1/4 cup parsley, garlic, salt, and black pepper in a large mixing bowl.

  5. Lightly stuff peppers with meat mixture. Spread 1 tablespoon tomato sauce on top of each portion of stuffing; place reserved tops onto peppers. Lay a piece of parchment paper loosely on top of peppers and cover the dish tightly with foil. Place the dish on top of a baking sheet.

  6. Bake in the preheated oven until peppers have softened slightly, about 1 hour. Remove foil and parchment paper. Continue baking until meat filling is cooked through and peppers are tender, 20 to 30 more minutes.

  7. Sprinkle each pepper with 1/2 teaspoon parsley and drizzle with a spoonful of pan juices.

    a white ceramic baking dish holding 6 baked stuffed red bell peppers
    Chef John's Beef and Rice Stuffed Peppers. Chef John

Chef's Notes:

I use parchment paper in this recipe because I don't like foil touching acidic things while they bake.

If you don't use the baking sheet, your peppers will bake faster.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

376 Calories
17g Fat
26g Carbs
30g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 376
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 17g 22%
Saturated Fat 7g 35%
Cholesterol 82mg 27%
Sodium 1724mg 75%
Total Carbohydrate 26g 10%
Dietary Fiber 4g 16%
Total Sugars 9g
Protein 30g
Vitamin C 111mg 553%
Calcium 141mg 11%
Iron 5mg 26%
Potassium 937mg 20%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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