Easy And Delicious Italian Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers With Rice Recipe

This easy vegetarian stuffed peppers with rice recipe is a meatless alternative to the classic Italian stuffed peppers recipe known as Peperoni Ripieno.

Vegetarian Stuffed Pepper Recipe

Stuffed Peppers

I was corrected recently by an Italian friend who told me that this recipe wasn’t Italian because the classic Italian stuffed peppers recipe has ground beef and pork as a main ingredient. I tried to explain that this was a vegetarian alternative and that I’ve watched Italian chefs make a similar dish, but he was having none of it. If an Italian dish has a name, then there was only one version of it. For example, he said, would you call vegetarian carbonara a real Carbonara? 

I stopped arguing, but he didn’t change my mind. This recipe has some popular Italian ingredients, and I am in Rome, so to me it is Italian.

Kitchen Tools And Cookware

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Pasta MakerGnocchi BoardPasta BoardRavioli Maker
Ravioli Press/StamperRicerBialetti Pasta PotBamboo Cutting Board Set of 3
Silpat Baking MatSantoku KnifeMeasuring Cups and SpoonsStainless Mixing Bowls
Dutch OvenMesh StrainersStainless ColanderStainless Steel Fry Pan

Colander – 5 Qt.

OXO makes some great products that really take the home cook into account and this colander is no exception.

If you have ever made tomatoes stuffed with rice, then this recipe is very similar. This recipe is great because the peppers don’t turn to mush when you are done cooking them and they bring a lot more flavor than the tomatoes. You can even prepare them ahead of time, throw them in the refrigerator and pop them in the oven whenever you want to.

Vegetarian Stuffed Pepper With Rice Recipe - Zucchine and Eggplant

Zucchine and Eggplant

Santoku Knife

The Santoku style knife is my favorite when I’m cooking and Victorinox makes a great one!

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers With Rice Recipe Recommendations

  • Peppers – One of the ingredients that drew me to this recipe was the peppers. I recommend red bell peppers, but yellow peppers are just as delicious. I would avoid green peppers, but that is entirely up to you. Also, you want to find large peppers that can take a lot of filling as well as a flat bottom so they will stand up in the pan when they are cooking. See… Easy!
  • Choosing The Rice – One of the things that makes this recipe Italian (to me) is my choice of rice. I used Carnaroli rice, but Arborio would be a good option as well. I wouldn’t use longer grain rice for any reason other than keeping it Italian.
  • Cooking The Rice – Here is where things can get a little tricky. When you are toasting the rice in Oil, you need to partially cook the rice. When it starts toasting in the pan, you can add some vegetable broth to the rice and cook it down a bit. Don’t fully cook it, but enough so that the result isn’t too al dente. I made this mistake the first time I made it and it is probably the most important thing to be aware of when cooking this recipe.

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers With Rice FAQs

Pasta Pot with Strainer

Perfect for cooking pasta, this pot can be used to cook a range of meals you will love!

Should I Boil The Peppers Before Stuffing Them?

No, for this recipe you will be roasting the peppers just enough to soften them up, but not enough to fully cook them. They will be roasted empty for about 30 minutes before you let them cool and stuff them.

What Are The Main Ingredients In Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers With Rice?

Unlike the meat version, this Italian Stuffed Peppers Recipe is all vegetables. The main ingredient, of course, are the red and/or yellow peppers. The next most important ingredient is the Carnaroli rice and finally the other vegetables that will be used as a filling, like: onion, eggplant and zucchine.

Vegetarian Stuffed Pepper With Rice Recipe - Tomatoes

Amazing Tomatoes

What Cuisine Is Stuffed Peppers?

While this question caused some disagreement between friends, I would say that any recipe that you make with peppers, eggplant, zucchini and Carnaroli rice, while living in Rome, is Italian.

Are Stuffed Peppers Good To Eat?

This recipe certainly is. It is all vegetables roasted and the only fat is in the olive oil, so I can’t think of any reason this recipe wouldn’t be good to eat, unless you don’t like peppers of course.

If you would like a free copy of this recipe in PDF format, please sign up for access to our Recipe Box which contains a growing list of amazing Italian recipes discussed on this blog, including this delicious recipe.

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers With Rice Recipe - Sauté

Sauté The Veg

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers With Rice Recipe

  • Difficulty: Easy

  • Prep Time: 45 mins

  • Cook: 30 mins

  • Servings: 4

Recipe Ingredients

  • 6 large Red Peppers

  • 1 Eggplant 

  • 4 small Zucchine

  • 8 ounces (200 gr) Carnaroli Rice

  • 1 or 2 Onions (depending on size)

  • 2 medium Tomatoes

  • Vegetable or Chicken Broth

  • Basil leaves to taste

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil to taste

  • Salt to taste

Cooking Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350° F

  2. Remove the tops of all the peppers and clean out the seeds and white ribs.

  3. Drizzle olive oil inside and outside of the peppers.

  4. Roast the peppers for 30 minutes.

  5. While the peppers are cooking dice the zucchine, eggplant and onions into small cubes.

  6. When the peppers are done, take two, dice them up and add them to the other vegetables.

  7. Add the vegetables to a hot pan with a few tablespoons of oil.

  8. Sauté the vegetables until soft. Remove and let them cool when they are soft.

  9. Add the rice to a clean and oiled pan and toast the rice for a few minutes.

  10. Gradually add some stock/broth to the rice and when it is absorbed, repeat until half-cooked.

  11. Use an immersion blender to blend the tomatoes and basil.

  12. Add 75% of the tomato mixture to the cooled rice.

  13. Put a tablespoon of the remaining tomato mixture on the bottom of each pepper.

  14. Fill the upright peppers to about half way with the rice and tomato mixture. 

  15. Put a tablespoon of the remaining tomato mixture on top of the rice in each pepper.

  16. Add the sautéed vegetables until full. Now top each pepper with the stem “hat”.

  17. Roast for around 30 more minutes.

vegetarian stuffed peppers with rice - Overflowing

Overflowing With Taste

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers With Rice Serving Suggestions

Leave the “hat” on top for the presentation and serve it directly from the oven because to me, screaming hot is best. You might also consider pairing this with something other than vegetables, like a nice bean dish or even some pasta. If you aren’t trying to stay vegetarian, you can make go with some chicken or fish as an accompaniment.

Previous Italian Vegetarian Recipes That Might Interest You

If you enjoyed this vegetarian stuffed peppers with rice recipe, here are some of other fantastic recipes that you might want to try:

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