By Amanda Peterson, Dietetic Intern [University of Minnesota – Fairview]
Looking for a hearty, healthy meal to satisfy a craving for Italian food? This savory dish is sure to appeal to everyone in your family. Combining several dishes that frequent my dinner table, this unique recipe is as good leftover as it is fresh from the oven.
What makes these stuffed peppers unique is that they are plant-based, with beans as the protein source. It’s the perfect recipe to make in honor of National Nutrition Month, which is recognized every March. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends to fill half of your plate with of veggies at mealtime; this dish will do the trick with the bell peppers, onions and tomatoes. Enjoy!
Italian Black Bean Stuffed Peppers
- 4 large bell peppers (any color)
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- ½ yellow onion, chopped
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 can fire roasted diced tomatoes
- One 12-oz. can tomato paste
- 1 cup black beans
- 2 tsp. oregano
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
- Preheat oven to 400° and grease a baking sheet.
- Slice peppers lengthwise and remove ribs and seeds. Place pepper halves on baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes.
- While peppers are baking, sauté oil, onions and garlic; then add fire roasted diced tomatoes, tomato paste, black beans and oregano to create black bean sauce.
- Remove peppers from oven and fill each pepper with ¼ cup sauce.
- Next, spoon in 2 tablespoons of ricotta cheese on top of sauce.
- Layer on 1 tablespoon of black bean sauce over the ricotta cheese.
- Top each pepper with 2 tablespoons of mozzarella cheese and bake for 12 minutes.
- Remove peppers from oven and top with a sprinkle of Italian seasoning or parmesan cheese.
Per serving size: 410 calories, 14g fat (7g saturated fat), 23g protein, 48g carbohydrate (19g sugar), 13g fiber and 760mg sodium