So I’m a day late on posting a meatless Monday recipe but here was last night’s tasty meatless dinner that included stuffed bell peppers with quinoa and black beans.
To be honest, I was not aware that meatless Monday was a thing up until a few weeks ago. One of my assignments in school was to participate in the meatless Monday movement. For those of you that are not familiar with meatless Monday, it is a global movement that was launched in 2003 with a simple message to “cut the meat once a week”.
The movement was created to encourage people around the world to go meatless for one day and in return improve their health and the health of the environment. Some studies show that limiting your intake of meat once a week may reduce your risk of chronic preventable conditions such as cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and obesity. So with that in mind this healthy meatless recipe was created.
In the mix you have quinoa, black beans, red onion, tomatoes, green chiles, jalapeno and parsley stuffed into a bell pepper of your choice → green, red, yellow and orange bell peppers were all included. The star ingredient that really stands out is the cumin that brings all the fresh flavors together with its earthy, nutty and spicy taste.
The final addition to the dish is the added crumbled non dairy cheese and a non dairy plain yogurt flavored with a little tapatio that’s drizzled on at the end. The creamy spicy yogurt and the nutty flavor from the non dairy cheese is the perfect topping.
Of course as always, if non dairy products are not your thing then shredded mozzarella and sour cream can be added instead.
Photo does not include any of the spices added or the toppings
Lets Get Cooking
To start → cook the quinoa per the package and place to the side.
In a large fry pan add olive oil on medium heat and saute the onions for about seven minutes.
Reduce heat to low and add all the ingredients with the exception of the bell peppers.
Mix until combined and remove from heat.
Side note: reserve the liquid from the canned tomatoes. I will show you why in a second.
Bell Pepper Assemble Time
Cut bell peppers in half and remove the seeds.
Add the reserved tomato liquid to a large baking dish and place the half bell peppers cut side up.
The liquid will help with steaming the outside of the bell peppers as they are baking in the oven.
Next stuff the half bell peppers with the quinoa and black bean mixture and fill to the top.
Cover with foil, bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes.
Remove foil and crumble the mozzarella cheese or vegan cheese on top.
Bake in the oven for 10 more minutes.
Remove from the oven and let cool.
Now for the good stuff!!
Toppings are endless → avocado slices, salsa, sour cream or even a jazzed up plain yogurt with hot sauce.
I’m a huge fan of Forager non dairy cashew based plain yogurt with a little tapatio.
Drizzle and serve with a side salad.
And if you’re questioning whether or not this dish provides enough protein let me reassure you that the combination of quinoa and black beans provides a substantial amount of protein.
But for all you meat lovers adding a cup of shredded chicken, ground beef or turkey to the recipe will definitely kick up the protein.
Quinoa and Black Bean Stuffed Bell Peppers
- 1 cup quinoa rinsed
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium red onion chopped
- 1 15 oz can black beans drained and rinsed
- 1 4 oz can diced green chiles
- 1 can 16oz diced tomatoes drained (reserve the liquid)
- 1/2 jalapeno pepper diced and seeds removed (optional)
- 1/2 cup parsley chopped
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 4 bell peppers
- 1/2-3/4 cup crumbled mozzarella cheese or vegan cheese
- avocado slices
- sour cream or non dairy plain yogurt
To Cook Quinoa:
- In a medium saucepan add water and quinoa on medium heat.
- Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Remove from heat and set to the side.
Prep Filling for Bell Peppers:
- While the quinoa is cooking lets start on the filling. In a large skillet or pan heat olive oil over medium heat until hot.
- Add chopped onions and cook for 7 minutes or until tender. Reduce heat to low.
- Add the quinoa and all the remaining ingredients with the exception of the bell peppers.
- Mix until well blended and remove from heat.
Assemble the Bell Peppers:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Cut bell peppers in half and remove the seeds and membranes from the inside.
- In a large baking dish add reserved liquid from the canned tomatoes into dish.
- Place bell peppers in baking dish cut side up.
- Spoon in quinoa and black bean mixture into each half bell pepper.
- Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove foil, add crumbled mozzarella cheese or vegan cheese on top.
- Bake for 10 more minutes.
- Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes.
- Add your choice of toppings and serve.