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Vegetarian stuffed peppers

I have some gorgeous peppers and want to stuff them, perhaps using tofu as a base, but not necessarily. I can use some grain, but don't want it to be primarily grain based.
Any favorite stuffings? We don't love quinoa.
I don't need method, just ingredient ideas.

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  1. What about stuffing with a tofu scramble? A semi firm tofu, nutritional yeast, grated veggies like carrot and zucchini, whatever herbs and spices you have on hand.

    Or this roasted corn tabouli- you could cut the bulgar but half and add in chickpeas instead....

    Or a tempeh crumbles and black beans mexican mix with shredded veggies, salsa, and top with cheese or daiya the last few min of baking.

    Or layer inside a lentil/walnut mix, then a layer of hummus, then chopped veggies, olives, hummus, and another veggie layer.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Ttrockwood

      Where did the edit button go??
      Anyways, i *think* you're ok with eggs... If so you could do a wilted spinach and onion mix to fill the pepper halfway, bake for half the total time, add an egg per pepper, and finish baking until the egg is as done as you like it....

      1. re: Ttrockwood

        That's interesting. Yes, I am ok with eggs ( actually an omnivore who eats about half vegetarian meals).

        1. re: magiesmom

          I *thought* so but sometimes my memory blanks out...! My sister does the egg version often with a cooked rice and veggie mix in the bottom, sometimes tomato sauce in the pan they're all cooking in too.

    2. Shredded cabbage, diced water chestnuts, shiitake mushrooms, rough chopped gingko berries, goji berries and some chopped walnuts.

      1 Reply
      1. I decided to stuff them with ratatouille and French feta.

        2 Replies
        1. re: magiesmom

          All out of ginko berries...? ;)

          Sounds like a delicious combo!

          1. re: Ttrockwood

            It worked really well. I will try the rice and egg and greens one when I have bell peppers because the cubanelles are tricky to stuff.

        2. I always use brown basmati rice in stuffed peppers, because it's got so much flavor of its own.

          For vegetarian, I sauté onion, garlic, celery, pepper, etc. and add equal amounts of cooked rice and cooked lentils, then maybe some tomatoes or vegetable broth.

          And they freeze & reheat pretty well!

          1. I stuff peppers (I prefer mini peppers but any kind would work) with a mixture of toasted homemade breadcrumbs, chopped olives and capers, raisins or another chopped dried fruit, pine nuts or almonds, lots of parsley and any other herbs you have on hand, red onion/shallot or scallion, and just enough olive oil to bind. You can use proportionately more of the stuffing "goodies" and less breadcrumbs to make it less grain-focused. Pre-bake the peppers for about 10-15 minutes, stuff, and then bake for another 20 minutes or so until the stuffing looks crunchy on top.

            4 Replies
            1. re: DevorahL

              That sounds interesting for a winter version. I can see these for an app with the mini peppers.
              I never pre bake or parboil peppers though.

              1. re: magiesmom

                Yeah, I usually make them as an app, either by cutting the tops off of mini peppers and stuffing them, or by choosing small bell peppers and slicing them in half through the stem. I don't know if you need to prebake necessarily, I've always done it and it works, but I wouldn't be surprised if you can skip it.

                1. re: DevorahL

                  I've made stuffed peppers many times. I never prebake --just slice in half as you mentioned -- and they always turn out fine.
                  I like your stuffing idea. I generally use brown rice, chickpeas & Middle Eastern spicing. Time to try something new :).

                  1. re: almond tree

                    We absolutely loved the ratatouille stuffing. I am going to make a big batch with bulgur today for freezing . Will add some chick peas.

            2. Mashed chick pea filling: Dice lots of onions and cook in oil until transparent or caramelized. Cook chick peas until soft (or drain a can of them). Mash chickpeas roughly with the back of a fork. You want at least as much onion as mashed chick peas. Season and stuff. Will compliment almost any sauce you want to add or to pour over it.

              4 Replies
              1. re: AdinaA

                Oh, I like that idea a lot. Thanks

                1. re: magiesmom

                  Sounds great (and vegan yay) I'm going to make it too.Adina what kind of sauce would you put over it? Sound Israeli to me..yum.

                  1. re: Rory

                    I am making another batch of peppers tomorrow, taking off on the chick pea idea but using some bulgur and some carrots. Will keep it vegan with a simple fresh cumin scented tomato sauce.
                    Hope to freeze some but we keep eating them all!

                    1. re: magiesmom

                      I've sauced small, sweet peppers with a Middle Eastern red sauce flavored with cumin and hot red pepper.

                      A traditional Ashkenazi Jewish/Eastern European sweet-and-sour red sauce over stuffed cabbage.

              2. we enjoy kasha as a base for the stuffing. (add onions, mushrooms, whatever . . .)

                8 Replies
                1. re: alc

                  can you cook either kasha (gosh haven't had that in years) or buckwheat groats in a rice cooker? I do millet and brown rice in my beloved Zojirushi...

                  1. re: Rory

                    Kasha and buckwheat groats are the same as far as I know. You can cook any grain in a rice cooker.

                    1. re: Rory

                      The kasha is roasted (and more flavorful IMO) than buckwheat groats that are most often sold raw-although as already stated they are the same grain.
                      The raw groats are great soaked overnight and then drained and dehydrated or baked for granola.

                      1. re: Ttrockwood

                        Hmmm. At our local store the raw ones are called kasha. It is good to know, thanks.

                        1. re: magiesmom

                          thanks for the info trockwood, hmm so then with Kasha would it be the same as converted rice/quinoa in my rice cooker? I really want to make this now:)

                          1. re: Rory

                            I adore kasha. I buy the Wolf's brand, "medium granulation"

                            Thing, is, the package directions call for cooking it by first coating the grains with a beaten egg or egg white. Then saute. Then add boiling water. This cooking method, which I have always used, produces nicely separated grains of cracked (granulated) kasha/buckwheat.

                            Omit the egg/saute stage and just boil, and it cooks into a sort of mushy mass.

                            Point is, I recommend kasha highly, but I'm not sure how this would work for vegans.

                            Just fyi. A very traditional, old-timey Eastern European Jewish weeknight meal was sauteed onions and mushrooms served over cooked kasha tossed with bow-shaped noodles. Makes a satisfying veggie dinner.

                            1. re: AdinaA

                              Sorry -- I thought I had written a reply to this thread but it seems I never posted it! I saute the kasha in oil and cook as a pilaf. You can cook kasha as a cereal (just simmer in water as for oatmeal) but it then comes out mushy. That's fine for breakfast but I think the pilaf works better for a stuffed pepper.

                            2. re: Rory

                              Sorry for the late reply!
                              I'm not sure about the rice cooker, i've honestly never used one...!
                              Kasha varnishkes is a delicious way to make it- there are other vegan versions out there but this recipe looks right with the mushroom and onion.

                              I've even found vegan versions in eastern european jewish restaurants here in nyc. And always only with bowtie shaped pasta.

                    2. If you eat dairy, corn pudding makes a great stuffing for peppers. Either cut corn off the cob or use frozen. Just pulse it briefly in food processor to break up kernels. Beat a couple of eggs with a cup of milk. I add 1/4 cup Bisquick for body if that's not a no-no for you. Add the corn, salt to taste, and some shredded Cheddar cheese. Fill the peppers and bake. I always cover any stuffed peppers (foil will do) for the first half of baking to keep steam in and soften peppers---then remove cover and let the stuffing brown a little.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Querencia

                        This sounds interesting. Do you cook them in any kind of sauce?

                      2. How do you feel about Farro?
                        What about soy crumbles?

                        1. Macaroni and cheese is my personal favorite, but a creamy paneer curry or lentil curry with paneer would be good, too. You can use the pepper "shells" to bake corn bread, too.

                          1. I love peppers and hate quinoa, so I'm interested in what the replies are. Good post.

                            As for ideas, how about eating the peppers with nothing in them? Sounds silly, but a lot of times I crave peppers and don't really need anything else. Or, how about tomatoes and white or jasmine rice?

                            1. Funny I don't like peppers but I'm great at cooking them for others.

                              What about polenta? some onions and mushrooms? I guess it would be like a pepper tamale.

                              1. I recently had some vegan stuffed Poblano peppers at a small not otherwise vegetarian Mexican restaurant: stuffed with a spicy plantain/onion mash and covered with a pumpkin seed mole. They also do another chile stuffed with rice, cheese and summer squash. I've had chile peppers stuffed with rice, corn, pumpkin seeds and squash, with a spicy tomato sauce: it would go just as well with bell peppers.

                                Brown rice, onions, and mushrooms also make a good stuffing; the brown rice gives it a nice chewy texture.