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3 bell peppers, red and yellow stuffed with quinoa on white plate with mint leaf and chopped pepper garnish

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

Author: Janet Harlow
Course: Vegetarian
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Servings: 4 servings
These gluten-free stuffed peppers can be a great vegetarian dinner or made with mini sweet peppers, they can be a snack or kid friendly lunch.
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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 40 mins


  • 4 small bell peppers
  • 3 Tbsp oil
  • ¾ c quinoa
  • c low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • ¾ c minced celery about 2 stalks
  • ¼ c minced onion about ½ small onion
  • 1 small garlic clove minced
  • 3 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 Tbsp dried mint
  • ¼ c lemon juice about 2 lemons
  • ¼ c sunflower seeds
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • salt



  • Use mini sweet peppers to make it an appetizer, snack or kid-friendly food.
  • Adjust the amount of onion and garlic depending on your preference.
  • If you’re a carnivore or want to add tofu, start with 1/2 c uncooked quinoa (cooked in 1 c + 2 Tbsps broth) add 1 cup cooked ground meat or shredded chicken.  For vegetarians, add some finely diced tofu for extra protein. Stir both in with the quinoa mixture.

Make the Quinoa:

  • Place 1½ Tbsp oil, ½ tsp salt and the quinoa in a medium-small saucepan over a high flame. Shake the pan to get the quinoa coated with the oil. Cook for about 5 minutes shaking often. This will toast the quinoa and intensify the flavor.
  • Once toasted add the broth and bring to a boil. Then reduce the flame as low as it goes, cover and cook until the liquid is absorbed, about 12-13 minutes. The ratio of liquid is a bit higher than usual for quinoa but I prefer it a bit wet for this dish.

While the quinoa is cooking:

  • Chop the parsley, juice the lemons and gather the rest of the ingredients. Mince the celery, onion and garlic.
  • Heat a non-stick skillet and add 1½ Tbsp oil. Add the celery and onion and cook over a medium-low flame. Cook slowly, stirring occasionally until they are tender but not browned, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for a minute. Once done, remove the skillet from the burner.
  • While the onion and celery are cooking,
  • Prepare the peppers
  • For whole peppers, (large serving) slice off the top and remove the ribs and seeds from the inside. Shave a very thin slice off the bottom to allow the pepper to stand up level. For a smaller serving cut the pepper in half (cut through the stem then down to the bottom) then remove the seeds and ribs.

This step is optional. Use the peppers raw if preferred:

  • Fire roast the peppers by placing them directly on a stove top burner. Char as much of the skin as possible. Turn them with tongs to expose all the skin to the flame. You are looking for the skin just to turn black without setting on fire, so keep a close eye on them. This allows you to keep an eye on the onions & celery and the quinoa at the same time.
  • Once the peppers are completely charred on the outside remove them from the flame and allow to cool a few minutes. With the peppers under running water (just a drizzle of water), remove the skin. It will easily slide off. Don’t worry if there are some small patches left on.
  • Once the quinoa and celery/onion mixture are ready, combine all the ingredients, except the cheese, in the pot with the quinoa. Taste for the salt level and add more if needed. Spoon the mixture into the peppers and top with feta. If you’re dairy-free leave out the cheese, these have plenty of flavor without it.
  • I prefer these at room temp but if you want them hot you can heat them in a 350° oven .


Did you make this recipe? Tag @chefjanetk on Instagram


Serving: 1stuffed pepperCalories: 302kcalCarbohydrates: 22gProtein: 14gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 27mgSodium: 617mgFiber: 4gSugar: 7g
Did you make this recipe?Let me know how it was! Tag @chefjanetk on Instagram.