Stuffed Peppers

Most of you know we’re trying hard to continue our “healthy” streak over here. As much as I would love to make mac n’ cheese or burgers every day, I love my clothes far too much to compromise their fit. (True story.)

These peppers make a perfect (and healthy!) weeknight meal. I can say this because I speak from experience. While the peppers are roasting, combine the rest of the one-pot ingredients. Stuff the roasted peppers with filling, melt some cheese on top, and you’ve got one happy couple.

Preheat an oven to 400 F.

Start out with four or five bell peppers. I strongly dislike green peppers — anyone else share my disdain?! — use whichever peppers you love most.

Slice the tops off of the peppers, then remove the cores and set aside. Next, cut through the peppers from top to bottom so you’re left with two equal pieces. These will serve as cups for the filling.

Place the halved peppers on a lined baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, then season with salt. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until soft.

Lower the oven temperature to 375 F. In a large skillet or dutch oven, heat one tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Sauté half an onion and season with salt and pepper.

Remember the tops of the bell peppers that you reserved? Chop those into similarly sized pieces (maybe 1/2″ – 1″ in size), then add them to the onion. (If nothing else, working in restaurant kitchens for a few months taught me not to waste anything!) Continue to cook until soft, about 5 minutes.

Add ground turkey, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Chop two tablespoons of fresh cilantro, then add to turkey mixture.

Place halved peppers in a large baking dish and fill with turkey.

Combine the tomato sauce and heavy cream in a small bowl, then pour into the baking pan and drizzle over the top of the peppers.

Top with slices of monterey jack cheese (or whichever cheese you fancy), then bake for 5 minutes to get it nice and melty.

Do NOT leave off the cheese.

I repeat, do NOT leave off the cheese.

Something magical happens when the cheese melts. The stuffed peppers are tasty on their own, but the combination of the melted cheese and the tomato-cream sauce make these truly special. Sprinkle with more chopped cilantro and serve immediately.

Whether we’re purposely eating healthy or not, I’d make these any night of the week.

So colorful!

P.S. For those who were wondering, the weight loss bet at hubby’s work is over. He met his goal and we celebrated with beer (for him), a boozy milkshake (for me), and some of the best burgers to be found in NYC. (If you live in NY, you seriously need to get your tuchas to Williamsburg and try Dumont Burger. For a beef patty, there’s nothing better.)

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