Insta(gram) good: Baked stuffed peppers with brown rice and spinach

smokshow peppers

As my brother would say, this dish is a total smokeshow…OK, I think he uses that in reference to chicks, but let’s diversify its meaning. I wasn’t planning on posting this on the bloggy but one of my friends just asked for the recipe on Instagram and then I realized that I’d like to remember how I made this too! I really hate peppers and I really hate brown rice but for some reason I always crave this dish, especially after the gym. It’s quick, easy, hearty, healthy and vegetarian…oh, and cheap, that’s always a plus. What’s not to love? Here’s what you need to make: Baked Stuffed Peppers with Brown Rice, Spinach and Pepper Jack Cheese.

Makes 2 really huge post-gym servings

  • 3/4 dry cup of brown rice, cooked per instructions (yields about 1.5 cups, cooked)
  • 1.5 cup sour cream
  • 3/4 cup grated pepper jack cheese
  • 2 medium white onions, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, or if you’re me, 5 cloves
  • 2 packages frozen spinach, defrosted and drained
  • 3 beautiful bell peppers, tops cut off and ribs removed or cut in half with ribs removed
  • smoked paprika
  • cayenne pepper
  • S/P

Pre-heat oven to 350.

In a large, shallow pot, heat 2 T olive oil at medium-high heat. Add diced onions and crushed or pressed garlic cloves. Soften for about 5-7 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Reduce heat to medium-low. Take the spinach by hand and break apart into the pot and mix in with the onion-garlic mixture. Fold in the cooked brown rice, sour cream and 1/2 cup of the pepper jack, reserving the rest for the tops of the stuffed peppers.

Sprinkle about 1.5 T of smoked paprika and a few shakes of cayenne depending on your preference over the mixture.  Adjust flavors accordingly, it might need more salt and more garlic at this point.

While the spinach, cheese and sour cream warm, line a cookie sheet or casserole dish with tin foil, placing the bell pepper halves snuggly together, insides facing up. Salt the bell pepper halves lightly; no need for oil as there is enough moisture in the peppers to keep them from sticking or burning.

Spoon the delicious mixture into each of the pepper halves, packing it down as you go. Sprinkle the remaining pepper jack cheese over the stuffed peppers and bake in the oven until golden brown and fragrant, about 30-35 minutes.  Serve as is, or with shrimp, chicken or salmon.

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