Vegan Stuffed Bell Peppers
Vegan Stuffed Bell Peppers are packed with a flavorful combination of vegetables and herbs, then topped with breadcrumbs and baked to perfection. This dish is wholesome, easy to make, and beyond satisfying!
With the rise in the black community eating a more plant-based diet, it is only fitting for me to modernize a New Orleans holiday side dish staple, “the stuffed bell pepper.”
Traditionally in New Orleans, bell pepper is stuffed with ground beef, ham, shrimp, crab meat, onions, celery, garlic, Cajun seasoning, and some breadcrumbs.
But to make it lighter, healthier, and vegan, instead of using ground meat, I use mushrooms. I used baby portobello mushrooms because they have a fresh, neutral flavor that I love cooked down in some good seasoning.
This recipe for vegan stuffed bell peppers in New Orleans style is so good you can serve it to anyone from New Orleans, and the only thing they’ll tell you that’s missing is the seafood. That’s how good this recipe is.
However, I didn’t take out all the other vegetables and seasonings. There’s no seafood or ham in this recipe; obviously, to make it vegan. But this is as close as you can get to traditional New Orleans stuffed bell peppers vegan style.
To make this incredible New Orleans vegan stuffed bell peppers corn, you will need the following key ingredients:
If you’re going to make stuffed bell peppers. You’ll need bell peppers. Use different colors for a prettier presentation.
Baby Portobello Mushrooms
This is our “meat” for this recipe. Mushroom’s natural umami flavor provides the same incredible meat flavor as ground beef does in traditional stuffed bell pepper.
If you cannot find any Savory seasoning. Use any Cajun-Creole Seasoning of your choice.
Panko Bread Crumbs
I love to use panko bread crumbs. The bigger crumb allows me to use less bread crumbs than I would if I were traditional bread crumbs. You can find them in the same section of the grocery store as traditional bread crumbs.
How to Make Vegan Stuffed Peppers
These stuffed peppers are easy to make and come together in under an hour. To make this delicious dish, just follow these steps:
Preheat the oven to 425°F. In a food processor, add the mushrooms in batches and blitz on high for 30 seconds at a time until the mushrooms resemble ground meat.
Heat a medium pot over medium-high heat, then add the oil and mushrooms. Cook for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the onions, celery, garlic, and thyme to the pot and cook for 2 minutes. Add Savory seasoning and salt, then stir. Add in the vegetable stock and half of the breadcrumbs, then remove from heat. (The mixture should hold when pressed together.)
Add the halved bell peppers to a foil-lined baking sheet, then add the mixture evenly to each pepper. Sprinkle them with the remaining breadcrumbs and drizzle the remaining oil on top.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the breadcrumbs are golden brown.
Stuffed Bell Peppers Recipe Tips & Tricks
If you don’t have everything you need, don’t stress. Here are some of the most common substitutions for this dish:
- If you don’t have green bell peppers, you can use any color you want. For an extra colorful dish, try using a combination of different colors.
- For a meaty version, swap out the ground mushrooms for cooked ground beef or ground turkey.
- I like to use panko breadcrumbs for the extra crunch, but you can use traditional breadcrumbs if you prefer them.
- If needed, you can swap out the portobello mushrooms for any kinds of mushrooms you like.
- While I prefer to use avocado oil in this recipe, any cooking oil you like will work.
What to Put in Stuffed Peppers
When it comes to what to put in stuffed peppers, the options are unlimited. Whether you’re looking for a protein boost, carb load, or ready for cheesy paradise, you can customize your stuffed peppers any way you want. If you’re looking to mix it up, below is a list of some of my favorite stuffing options.
Meat: Ground beef, ground chicken, ground turkey, shrimp, crawfish, lobster, ham, bacon, tasso (Cajun smoked ham), or smoked sausage.
Grains: Rice, orzo, bread crumbs, or quinoa.
Vegetables: Tomatoes, cabbage, zucchini, squash, or mushrooms.
Cheese: Cheddar, mozzarella, parmesan, pepper jack, or smoked gouda cheese.
What to Serve With Stuffed Peppers
Trust me when I say that these Vegan Stuffed Peppers are delicious all on their own. That being said, they also taste fantastic when paired with a ton of different dishes. From rice and pasta to meat and salad, you can serve this dish with anything you want.
Here are some of my top choices on what to serve with stuffed peppers:
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about stuffed peppers:
Do I need to boil my peppers before stuffing them?
No, you do not need to boil your peppers before stuffing them. They will soften as they bake in the oven, so no extra work is needed!
What do you put in stuffed bell peppers?
You can stuff your peppers with the meats, cheeses, grains, herbs, and/or vegetables of your choosing. For a traditional New Orleans stuffed bell pepper, we use ground beef, ham, and shrimp. For a healthier stuffed bell pepper, use ground turkey and omit the ham and shrimp.
Can you make It ahead?
Stuffed bell peppers can easily be made in advance and stored either in the fridge or in the freezer until you’re ready. Before storing them, make sure to let the peppers cool down to room temperature. Once they’ve cooled, you can transfer them to an airtight storage container and store them in one of two ways:
- In the fridge for up to 7 days.
- In the freezer for up to 3 months.
If you freeze the peppers, allow them to thaw in the fridge for 24-48 hours. When you’re ready to reheat them, simply pop them in the oven at 350°F for 5-10 minutes.
Latest Recipe Video:
Common One to One Substitutions:
Feel free to swap the green bell peppers for red, yellow, or orange bell peppers
You can swap out the mushrooms for ground beef or ground turkey.
Feel free to use traditional bread crumbs instead of panko bread crumbs.
You can use any mushrooms of choice as a swap for baby portobello.
Use any oil you have at home as a swap for avocado oil.
More Delicious Cajun Ideas
These vegan stuffed bell peppers are for you when you want to indulge in something decadent without guilt. This dish is wholesome, easy to make, and beyond satisfying! As always, don’t forget to leave me a 5-star review below! Comment below if you made the recipe yourself, and make sure to post it on Instagram.
Vegan Stuffed Bell Peppers
- 2 16 oz. baby portobello mushrooms washed, sliced
- ½ cup avocado oil
- 1 medium onion chopped small
- 4 stalks celery chopped small
- 8 garlic cloves chopped small
- 6 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 tablespoons savory seasoning
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- ½ cup unsalted vegetable stock
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- 4 bell peppers seeded
- Preheat oven to 425°F. In a food processor add mushrooms in batches and blitz on high for 30 seconds, until mushrooms resemble ground meat. Turn on the heat to medium high in a medium pot add 4 tablespoons of oil and mushrooms, cook for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the onion, celery, garlic and thyme, cook for 2 minutes. Add savory and salt, stir once or twice. Stir in stock and ½ cup of breadcrumbs, mixture should hold when pressed together. Add bell peppers to a foiled liner baking sheet. Evenly add mixture in bell peppers, sprinkle with remaining bread crumbs and drizzle remaining oil over top. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until breadcrumbs are golden brown.
Made this recipe? Take a picture and tag me on Instagram (@kennethtemple_) or Facebook (@ChefKennethTemple)!