If you are looking for a low-carb dinner that explodes with flavor, you could do this tonight or do-ahead for tomorrow night. These ingredients are in a lot of our refrigerators and on our counter tops:
- One large carrot, finely diced
- One large rib celery, finely diced
- One medium onion finely diced.
- Olive oil for sauteing
- One and a half pounds lean ground beef
- One cup shredded pepper Jack cheese
- Five or six bell peppers cut in half pole to pole and de-seeded (it’s best to cut a bit off center, just missing the stem making each half a cup that won’t leak).
- One slightly beaten egg
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire
- 2 tablespoons A-1 steak sauce or the steak sauce of your choice.
- 1 tablespoon dry Italian herb mix (parsley, oregano, thyme, basil, marjoram, sage).
- 1/4 cup tomato paste thinned with a splash of red wine or apple cider vinegar.
In a large skillet pour in olive oil enough to coat the bottom well and when it’s hot cook up the Holy Trinity of carrot, celery and onion with a pinch of salt and pepper until it browns on the edges a bit and let cool. Get your bell peppers lined up and ready to stuff because it’s going to get messy (but in a healthy way). Did you know a bell pepper has twice the vitamin C as an orange?
Let’s build strong bodies! In a large bowl add in the meat and all the other ingredients except for the tomato paste mixture; that’s for topping at the end. By hand (don’t forget to take off your rings), squish everything together, including the cooked and somewhat cooled vegetable mixture.
Don’t rinse off yet! Pick up a good size hunk of this meat mixture and smash it into the bell pepper half-shells. Hopefully you come out even. If not, you have a great burger to fry up tomorrow or you get to slice up a half-shell of bell pepper for a healthy snack. I came out even with ten good size half-shells to stuff. If you are doing ahead just wrap them up on a platter or shallow pan and pop them on the heat when you are ready. They’ll keep a day or two if you work with very fresh beef.
These could be baked for about 45 minutes in a 350°F oven or better yet, get the grill fired up outside and grill for 45 minutes; lid down and with off-set flame. The latter method adds tons more flavor. If you can’t grill you could add a few drops liquid smoke when you’re mixing things together if you like that smokey flavor.
Once the peppers are cooked through, top them with the tomato paste mixture, shut off the flame or oven and let them hang out a while in the remaining heat.
Time to plate up.! Each Pepper (two halves serving) is a delicious, self contained, healthy, balanced meal. You’re going to love how easy and tasty and guilt free these stuffed peppers are!