Ahhh comfort food --- and for our family one of the favorites is stuffed peppers casserole!
The original recipe for this was a stuffed pepper --- mom put in a lot of work to carve out the middle of the pepper, level the bottom so they'd stand up, and then fill them and bake them. And, I must admit (Ya'll know I am picky, right?!?) that I HATED them! They were always made with green peppers which I don't like -- and -- well...since that was the star of the show I just never liked them!
Then I discovered red, orange and yellow peppers -- and that I LOVE them! Haha -- who knew there was such a difference in taste between the peppers! So, I decided to try out the basic recipe, but with my colorful peppers...and because I am a time saver in the kitchen ( some might say lazy?) I decided that it would be SO MUCH EASIER to just dice them up, mix it all together and go! Over the years we have also adapted the recipe to the season, to what I have on hand, and to the tastes of whoever is home eating them! But, here is the basic recipe --- and you should definitely experiment to what you like best! **Side note -- we were just talking to Matt's aunt yesterday and agreed that baking is not always forgiving for 'messing around' with the recipe -- but cooking IS! You can adjust almost anything -- and still come out with a tasty meal!
Here's the basics I used --- amounts are approximate as this is not a recipe that I measure anything with!
Peppers -- I used 3 because that is what I had. I like them diced pretty small so there are some in every bite!
Browned Ground Beef -- 1.5 Pounds
Rice -- I used about 2 cups of minute rice ( we also love it with brown minute rice)
Sauce -- this time I used three pints of home canned (Rotel, a spicy sauce and a basic sauce) -- but I also will use purchased Rotel, fire-roasted tomatoes, plain tomato sauce -- whatever! If my sauces are pretty plain then I add more spicy seasoning!
Cheese -- this is totally to taste! I put in some 3-cheese shredded I had as well as some shredded parmesan I needed to use up!
To this I added probably about 1/2 pint of water to make sure there was enough liquid for the rice to cook -- and my basic seasonings of garlic powder, granulated onion, salt and pepper. (We have a blend of red and black pepper right now that is amazing!)
Then mix it all together -- bake at 350 for about 45 minutes -- and boom! Comfort food at it's finest! Served with homemade bread is Matt's favorite -- but he's also been known to eat it with tortilla chips! And, it freezes/reheats really well so this is a go-to for our busy times of the year or to send leftovers back to college for the kiddo that loves it!
Let me know what you think!!