I love how you can fill stuffed peppers with pretty much anything, and you know they’re going to be good. That still usually involves rice at my house, but not last weekend folks. I went wild, and used orzo instead, to make this delicious Italian stuffed peppers recipe.
Hot shazam… it was good.
Would you believe it wasn’t until just a few years ago that I even tried a stuffed pepper? I’m telling ya… I lived such a sheltered childhood when it came to food. If it didn’t come from a box or a mix, it never happened.
Cry a tear for me.
But then start getting these Italian stuffed peppers ready for dinner.
Prepare the filling mixture, and then add some Rao’s Marinara sauce. Have you ever tried Rao’s? They sent me some samples, so I just tried it for the first time when making these Italian stuffed peppers. Good stuff, y’all. It’s not cheap, but the flavor is rich and smooth.
And then you need to stuff. And stuff. And stuff.
I was able to fill eight large green peppers with the filling.
Then I spooned some more marinara sauce over the top of the peppers.
And finally sprinkled some Italian cheese on top of the sauce.
Cover the entire pan with foil, and bake those babies. Uncover them for the last five minutes to give the cheese a chance to melt and turn golden for ya.
Italian Stuffed Peppers
- 8 large green bell peppers, washed, de-seeded and with tops removed
- 1 lb ground Italian sausage
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 Tbsp garlic powder
- 16-ounce box orzo
- 15 oz ricotta cheese
- 1½ cups shredded Italian cheese, divided
- ½ tsp thyme
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 egg
- 3.5 oz pkg pepperoni
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 1 24-oz jar Rao's Homemade Marinara Sauce, divided (If extra sauce is desired for serving, 2 jars is recommended)
- In a large frying pan, brown ground beef and ground sausage. Sprinkle garlic powder over meat while it's browning. When browned, drain and set aside.
- While meat browns, bring water to boil in Dutch oven-sized stock pot. Boil orzo for 6 minutes. Rinse with cold water. Drain.
- Also, while meat browns, fill a large stockpot ¾-full of water. Bring to a boil. Carefully place green peppers into boiling water. Let cook for 5 minutes. Remove pot from heat, and run cold water into the pot in sink until peppers are cool to the touch.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In large bowl, mix together ricotta, 1 cup of the Italian cheese, thyme, oregano, salt, black pepper and egg. Mix in 1 cup marinara sauce.Add beef, sausage, pepperoni and orzo into cheese mixture.
- Spoon the mixture into the cooked green peppers, and place in large rectangular baking dish. Top with spoonfuls of marinara sauce. Sprinkle on remaining ½ cup of Italian cheese.
- Cover with foil. Bake for 1 hour, 10 minutes. Uncover; bake another 5 minutes or until cheese melts and starts to turn golden brown.
- Serve with hot marinara sauce, if desired.
Serve with a bowl of hot marinara sauce to spoon over your pepper when you cut it apart, and get to eatin’. Yummy!