Easy Chili Cheese Stuffed Peppers
These Chili Cheese Stuffed Peppers are brimming with savory and cheesy goodness with a punch of heat! Bell peppers are loaded with flavorful homemade beef chili, topped with melty cheese and baked until tender and gooey! It is eye-catching, delicious, and easy to make- what more can you ask for?
Stuffed Veggies for the Win!
I love stuffed veggies!
I think it is a great way to add healthy vegetables into our daily meals in a more subtle, not-on-your-face way. Take my Thai Basil Beef Stuffed Zucchini and Baked Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Artichokes for example. Instead of feeding my Charlie zucchini and artichokes only, I cleverly stuff them with meat and other spices to keep her distracted. And mind you, it works for adults who are not so fond of veggies too! This Easy Chili Cheese Stuffed Pepper recipe is my newest addition to the “sneak-the-veggies” collection. I love the combination of sweet peppers, chili beef, and savory cheese in every bite! I used red, green, or orange bell peppers to make it even more enticing.
What You Need to Make Chili Cheese Stuffed Peppers?
This may look like a long list, but only cause I made the chili from scratch. If you have leftover chili, or if you do not mind using canned chili, you can cut down the number of ingredients to three! Here’s what you need:
- Ground beef- Use at least 70% lean beef to keep your chili stuffing from becoming too greasy. You can also use ground pork, sausage, chicken, or turkey as alternatives.
- Spiced chili beans- use any brand you prefer. I like using canned spiced beans because they instantly add flavor to the dish. However, feel free to use plain beans like pinto or kidney beans.
- Vegetables- I used garlic, onion, green pepper, and stewed whole tomatoes to make this classic chili.
- Spices- you will need chili powder, celery seed, paprika, and ground cumin to achieve that warm and zesty chili flavor!
- Chicken stock- you can also use water but using stocks makes the chili even more flavorful!
- Bell peppers- select large ones in red, green, or orange colors. They should be big enough for stuffing once you remove the seeds from the cavity.
- Cheddar cheese- melts to savory perfection! You can also use mozzarella or Monterey Jack.
- Olive oil- for sautéing.
- Kosher salt and ground pepper- to taste.
- Make it a fully loaded meal by stuffing them with rice, quinoa, or other grains. Fill the bell peppers halfway, then add the chili and top with cheese before baking.
- Make it vegan by omitting ground beef, or replacing it with chopped mushrooms. Use vegetable stock and vegan cheese instead.
- Make it less fiery by omitting the chili powder and replacing the spiced chili beans with regular beans instead. It would still be delicious!
How to Make Them
This recipe will take you around an hour to make. But half of that time will just be waiting for the stuffed pepper to bake, so you can take that time to chill before chow time!
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
- Spray a 9 X 13 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
- Cut the tops off of the bell peppers and remove the seeds and membranes inside.
- Make the Chili. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. After that, add the garlic, onion, and green pepper, then saute until the vegetables are softened for about 5 minutes. Add the ground beef and cook until they are no longer pink. This can take about 5 minutes. Then, add the spices, tomatoes, beans, and chicken stock and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Allow 10 to 15 minutes for the chili to simmer.
- Stuff the Peppers. Place the sliced and cleaned peppers in the prepared baking dish cut-side up. Fill them with the beef chili all the way to the top. Sprinkle cheese on top of each stuffed pepper.
- Bake. Place the baking dish in the oven and cook for about 30 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the peppers have softened. Allow the peppers to cool before serving!
Tips When Making Chili Cheese Stuffed Peppers
- When selecting the bell peppers, make sure that the bottoms are even so they do not topple over in the oven. In case you cannot find any, just trim the bottoms until they can stand upright.
- If you like to retain the crispiness of the bell peppers, reduce the baking time. However, take note that they tend to be sweeter the longer they are baked.
- Do not over bake your stuffed peppers or they will become mushy and soggy.
- You can also cut the pepper in half so you can make more servings!
- Load your stuff peppers up with toppings and garnishes like sour cream, parsley, chives, avocados, or pickled onions.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Do I need to boil or blanch the bell peppers before stuffing them? No need! They will cook and soften in the oven.
- Can I use other stuffing aside from chili? Sure! You can adapt this recipe and use other stuffing instead. I like making a breakfast version of this by replacing it with eggs. Check my Everything Omelet Peppers recipe to see how.
- How do I deseed a bell pepper? It is pretty easy. Once you cut the tops, gently scoop the seeds and membrane using a spoon.
- Are bell peppers spicy? The answer is no. Bell peppers produce very little to no capsaicin, the chemical that gives peppers that burning sensation when consumed. They actually score the lowest on the Scoville scale, and once they are roasted, they become sweeter!
Any leftovers should be placed in an airtight container or wrapped in foil. Place them in the fridge for up to 3 days. You can make the chili ahead of time and keep it in the refrigerator for up to 4 to 5 days or frozen for up to 3 months.
Easy Chili Cheese Stuffed Peppers
- 1 tbsp Olive oil
- 2 cloves Garlic, minced
- 1 large Green bell pepper, chopped
- 1 medium Yellow onion, chopped
- 1 lb Ground beef
- 2 15oz Cans medium chili beans, drained
- 2 15oz Cans stewed whole tomatoes
- 1 tbsp Kosher salt
- 1 tbsp Ground pepper
- 1 tbsp Chili powder
- 2 tsp Celery seed
- 2 tsp Paprika
- 2 tsp Ground cumin
- 4 to 6 cups Chicken stock
- 6 to 8 large Mixture of bell peppers: red, green, or orange
- 2 cups Shredded cheddar cheese
- Preheat a large pot to medium high heat and add the olive oil. Next, add the garlic with onion and green pepper. Saute the vegetables for about five minutes or until softened. Add in the ground beef and cook until no longer pink; about five minutes. Next, add in the spices, tomatoes, beans, chicken stock, and bring to a boil and then a simmer. Let the chili simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.
- While the chili cooks, preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 9 X 13 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Cut the tops off of the bell peppers and remove the seeds and membranes inside. Place the peppers in the baking dish.
- Fill the peppers with the chili, all the way to the top. Sprinkle the cheese on top of each bell pepper. Next, place the baking dish in the oven and cook for about 30 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and peppers have softened. Allow the peppers to cool before serving!