We all continually go through different seasons and stages of life. However, typically the seasons slowly morph from one phase to the next without you recognizing much change at all. But, then there are those other times in life that all of the changes come barreling towards you at once, and all you can do is jump, full speed ahead into the next chapter and hold on tight!
I am currently going through the latter, and it literally feels like I am swapping out my current life for a new one overnight. All of the changes are good and exciting, but nonetheless, when they all come within the span of two weeks, it can be a little overwhelming. A little over a week ago, Patrick and I bought our very first home. The day before that, I said goodbye to my job of nearly four years. Last week, we traveled to the Dominican Republic for our friends, Irene and Jose’s, wedding. And this week we will officially move into our new home! On top of all that, I’m beginning a new job next week. Like I said, it’s all truly so exciting.. it’s just A LOT! I guess what I’m trying to say is that I foresee a lot of takeout meals, frozen pizzas and leftovers in our near future!
Stuffed peppers are perfect for the days when life gets a little crazy. They’re comforting and nutritious, but most importantly they make great leftovers! And they are practically an entire meal in one package, so you won’t have to spend much, if any, time on side dishes. I like to make these on a Sunday when I have a little more time for hollowing out peppers (way easier than it sounds, I promise) and chopping veggies.
I always have extra stuffing when I make these. Honestly, enough that I could probably get a fifth pepper out of it. But, in our home, we’re most likely to heat up the extra stuffing one morning that week and top it with a fried or scrambled egg. Remember that lemon yogurt sauce from a couple of weeks ago? Well, I’m fairly certain it would be good on ANYTHING, but I know from experience that it goes especially well drizzled over these stuffed peppers. If you do want to add a little something else to this, a simple spinach or arugula salad with a splash of your favorite vinaigrette will go perfectly well.
- 1 cup brown rice
- 4 large bell peppers
- 1 large red onion, diced
- 1/2 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 links (8 ounces) Italian sausage (removed from casings)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 cup parmesan (finely shredded)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1/4 cup sharp cheddar (grated)
- Cook the rice, according to the instructions on the package.
- Preheat the oven to 375°.
- Prepare your bell peppers – If they don’t sit flat already, trim a small amount off the bottoms to level them off. Cut off the stem ends of the peppers and remove the seeds and fleshy parts from inside of the pepper. Trim off any pepper connected to the stem caps, dice and set aside. Place the hollowed out peppers in a foil-lined, olive oil sprayed baking dish.
- Heat 1/2 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the diced pepper and onion, sauteing for 5-6 minutes until softened. Remove mixture from the pan and set aside.
- Add 1 teaspoon of olive oil to the skillet, along with the sausage removed from the casing. Cook until lightly browned, crumbling it apart with a spatula.
- Add the pepper-onion mixture back into the skillet with the sausage, along with oregano and garlic powder. Cook for 2-3 minutes to combine the flavors.
- Add the cooked rice and parmesan to the sausage mixture, season with salt and pepper. Cook for another 1-2 minutes to melt the cheese.
- Stuff the sausage and rice mixture into the hollowed out peppers. Press it down into the peppers with a small spoon so that it’s packed in tightly.
- Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle the sharp cheddar over each pepper. Bake for an additional 10-15 minutes, until cheese is lightly browned.
**If you have extra filling leftover, you can bake it in a small dish along with the peppers. Heat it up the next day and add an egg to it for breakfast!
What are your favorite go-to meals when life gets a little busier than normal? I would LOVE your suggestions and recipes.
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