Stuffed Pepper Casserole
This easy casserole is a perfect weeknight dinner! The comforting, flavorful meal includes ground beef, Italian sausage, sweet bell peppers, tender white rice, and plenty of cheese in a zesty Italian tomato sauce.
Servings 6 - 8 people
- ½ lb. ground Italian sausage
- ½ lb. ground beef
- 1 large sweet onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
- 3 medium green bell peppers, seeded and diced
- 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, NOT drained
- 1 (29 ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 3 cups cooked white rice
- 1 cup shredded Cheddar Jack cheese, or more to taste
- Optional garnish: chopped fresh parsley
Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a deep 9 x 13-inch baking dish; set aside.
In a large Dutch oven, brown the sausage, ground beef, onion and garlic over medium-high heat until the meat is no longer pink; drain off fat.
Stir in the bell peppers, diced tomatoes with juices, tomato sauce, soy sauce, Italian seasoning, sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. Bring the mixture to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer gently for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat. Stir in the rice.
Transfer the mixture the prepared baking dish. Top with shredded cheese.
Bake for 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the casserole is hot and bubbly. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with fresh parsley.
- Make sure that you purchase the large 29-ounce can of tomato sauce. You need plenty of sauce so that the casserole stays nice and moist and doesn't dry out in the oven.
- For a shortcut, use leftover rice from the night before or a packet of microwaveable rice (like Uncle Ben's Ready Rice).
- Garnish the finished dish with fresh herbs just before serving. They add a colorful, fresh touch!
- Use red, orange or yellow peppers if you prefer a sweeter taste. Green bell peppers provide a zestier bite.
- Bake the casserole just until it's heated through. All of the ingredients are already cooked, so you just want to warm it in the oven until bubbly.
- Cooking for a smaller family? Cut all of the ingredients in half and bake the casserole in an 8-inch square dish. The rest of the cooking instructions remain the same.
- Divide the casserole ingredients between two 8-inch square baking dishes. Bake one now, and freeze the other for a later meal.
Serving: 1/8 of the casserole | Calories: 336kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 55mg | Sodium: 995mg | Potassium: 749mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 821IU | Vitamin C: 50mg | Calcium: 164mg | Iron: 3mg