Mexican Stuffed Peppers with Quinoa and Black Beans. This easy dinner reheats like a dream and makes a great freezer meal. Try it with the homemade enchilada sauce! (Gluten-Free & Vegan)
Recipe, photos, and post updated April 2018. Originally posted March 2012.
Do you guys do Meatless Monday? It’s a great way to change things up, mix in more plant-based meals, and even save a little money while you’re at it. I’ve been SO EXCITED to share this recipe with you since there are so many new faces around here.
These Mexican Stuffed Peppers with Quinoa & Black Beans have been in my top recipes every year since 2012. Isn’t that nuts?! They were a favorite long before we needed to eat gluten and dairy free, and they’ve continued to be a favorite ever since.
Why? So glad you asked….(or, at least I asked…myself…)
For one thing, Tex-Mex flavors are a forever favorite around these parts. Anything taco-y or enchilada-y, or burrito-y is right up my alley. These have lots of goodies tucked inside, like black beans, cilantro, a little red onion, some bright colorful tomatoes, and a tiny baby kick from some mild green chiles.
For another thing, they’re also a dynamite way to use quinoa. I love quinoa more than ever now that we’re gluten free because it’s such a flexible grain option. Plus, it packs a protein punch and is more nutrient dense than brown rice or white rice.
And while I could go on and on, I also love that they’re meal-prep and freezer friendly. You can easily make these ahead of time (perfect for packing away for a busy night or bringing to a friend in need), or make them to enjoy for lunches throughout the week.
You can mix and match filling options here too–feel free to stir in some corn, or a little grilled chicken or taco-seasoned beef/turkey (obviously not vegan).
And, I mean, I don’t want to tell you how to live your life, but while you’re at it, I *highly* recommend making your own enchilada sauce. It’s completely delicious and just the right amount of spicy!
TIPS FOR THE PERFECT MEXICAN STUFFED PEPPERS:
SPEED THINGS ALONG! If you want to speed the baking process along, you can pre-cook your peppers a bit. You can microwave them (seeded and halved) for a minute or two to soften, steam them for 1-2 minutes, or blanch them in boiling water for about a minute. If you pre-cook your peppers a bit, you’ll really only need about 20-25 minutes in the oven.
MIX THINGS UP! I love using flavored olive oils to give these an added boost–Mexican Lime, or even a bit of Jalapeño olive oil are really nice here, too! Or, you can switch up the filling, by mixing in some grilled corn, sliced black olives, or even some grilled chicken or taco-spiced turkey/ground beef (obviously the meat options are no longer vegan). You could also top these with shredded cheese if you’re not dairy free/vegan.
FREEZER INSTRUCTIONS. To freeze these, you’ll want to put your assembled peppers in a freezer-safe baking dish (ceramic, glass, metal, or heavy-duty foil) and cover the baking dish with a layer of plastic wrap, then foil for extra insulation. You can bake them straight from frozen (add your enchilada sauce before freezing or right before baking–your choice!). Just follow the regular baking instructions and they should be ready to go! Just don’t forget to remove the plastic wrap before re-heating!!!
MEAL PREPPING? TRY THESE! I love these 2-compartment glass containers. They don’t hold onto odors, and they’re microwave and oven safe, which makes for easy re-heating.
TRY THESE TASTY TOPPINGS! You can enjoy these as is with some enchilada sauce drizzled on top, or you can kick things up a notch with some guacamole, citrus avocado dip, or sliced avocado. Non-vegans folks can also easily do a dollop of sour cream or a sprinkle of cheese.
CRAVING MORE? YOU MIGHT ALSO LOVE…
- How to Cook Quinoa
- Homemade Enchilada Sauce (This is THE BEST!)
- Confetti Quinoa Salad with Lime Vinaigrette
- Vegetarian Tortilla Soup
- Spring Roll Quinoa Salad
- Mexican Zucchini Boats – Another great way to fit in more veggies with a Tex-Mex twist!