Quinoa Corn and Chorizo Stuffed Peppers
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OK, are these Quinoa Corn and Chorizo Stuffed Bell Peppers not beauties? Healthy for you, with quinoa substituting for rice and this is a perfect dish for anyone with a diabetic in the family. No sugar spikes like white rice can give.
These aren’t those grey green, wilted stuffed peppers your grandmother used to serve you! Nope, in fact, I chose red ones just for the visual. We eat with our eyes first and I like a nice presentation. These bad boys are firm, yet tender and packed with a tasty, homemade chorizo that gets a healthy boost from steamed quinoa, corn and topped with some pepper jack cheese.
The quinoa is here not only for the healthy aspect, but really for the texture. I have really almost completely stopped using white rice because it breaks down so quickly and with a diabetic in the house, it’s not good. Sugar levels spike with white rice. Brown rice, quinoa, and a host of other grains like farro, barley and wheat berry are used these days.
Quinoa’s nutty seed is packed with healthy benefits like magnesium, riboflavin and iron, is rich in minerals and easily absorbs any flavor it’s mixed with so it was a logical choice over the usual rice. It also takes longer to break down, so if you live with a diabetic, you know how important that is, right?
In a bowl mix the ground pork, red wine vinegar, Smoked paprika, ancho chili powder, Mexican oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, cumin, kosher salt thoroughly to incorporate and distribute the seasoning throughout for meat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight. This can go right into cooking, but the longer it marinates I feel the better the flavor.
While the meat is marinating, cook the quinoa as directed, drain any excess liquid, fluff with a fork and set aside.
Preheat your oven to 350°F. Dice the onion and garlic, set aside. Cut the bell peppers from top to bottom through the stem and down. Carefully cut away seeds and excess inner membrane to create a pepper shell. Set aside.
See how I did them below, you want the stem to be intact and keep the shape to hold all the filling.
Bake the peppers on a lined baking sheet for 20 minutes. You want them slightly cooked, but still able to hold their shape. Remove from oven and tip out any juices from inside the peppers.
While peppers are baking, in a large cast iron skillet or frying pan sauté the onions in the oil until golden. Next add the garlic and cook on medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the pork mixture and brown, stirring to crumble. Add the chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, stir and cook for another 2 minutes. Season with salt if needed and place in a mixing bowl. Add the corn and quinoa and mix thoroughly to incorporate. I like to use fresh corn whenever possible, but feel free to use frozen or canned.
Divide the mixture into each of the peppers and top with pepper jack cheese. Return to oven and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and top with chopped cilantro and serve two per person.
These have so many layers of flavor, the pepper isn’t cooked to death, but is al dente, and has a nice, sweet counterbalance to the heat of the chorizo filling. I hope you try these out and let me know what you think.
Also, if you like these Quinoa Corn and Chorizo Stuffed Bell Peppers, maybe try my Homemade Chorizo Meatballs in Cilantro Masa Cups or Empanadas Mendocinas, too. Enjoy!
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Quinoa Corn and Chorizo Stuffed Peppers
- 1 lb ground pork
- 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp Smoked paprika
- 2 tsp ancho chili powder
- 2 tsp Mexican oregano
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup quinoa cooked
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 onion diced
- 4 garlic cloves diced
- 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
- 4 large red bell peppers
- 1 cup corn kernels
- 1 1/2 cups pepper jack cheese
- cilantro for garnish
- In a bowl mix the ground pork, red wine vinegar, Smoked paprika, ancho chili powder, Mexican oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, cumin, kosher salt thoroughly to incorporate and distribute the seasoning throughout for meat.
- Cook the quinoa as directed, drain any excess liquid and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Dice the onion and garlic, set aside. Cut the bell peppers from top to bottom through the stem and down. Carefully cut away seeds and excess inner membrane to create a pepper shell. Set aside.
- Bake the peppers on a lined baking sheet for 20 minutes. You want them slightly cooked, but still able to hold their shape. Remove from oven and tip out any juices from inside the peppers.
- While peppers are baking, in a large cast iron skillet or frying pan sauté the onions in the oil until golden. Next add the garlic and cook on medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the pork mixture and brown, stirring to crumble. Add the chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, stir and cook for another 2 minutes. Season with salt if needed and place in a mixing bowl. Add the corn and quinoa and mix thoroughly to incorporate.
- Divide the mixture into each of the peppers and top with pepper jack cheese. Return to oven and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and top with chopped cilantro and serve.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
Hey Kevin! I was craving this chorizo, so went to the market and no ground pork! Instead I bought a port loin and ground it myself (the grinder attachment to my mixer gets a lot of use). We have banana peppers from the garden, so I’m using some of the chorizo in those and I’m also doing a chorizo/potato hash. Good stuff!
Hot dang, you’re amazing Dorothy! I’ve never ground my own meat or made sausages, thanks for the inspirational idea. And that hash sounds perfecto!
Hey Kevin! I originally bought the grinder attachment for my mixer because a good friend needed help dispatching a deer. He only wanted ground venison, but I stopped him from grinding up the tenderloin, shank meat and rib roasts – I claimed those for myself! I’ve used it a lot since. I buy roasts of beef and pork on sale and grind them, usually coarsely, because I control how much fat goes in. Yeah, I know I’m a little weird, but in a good way (I think?). 🙂
Weird no, live too far away, yes! We would be great neighbors Dorothy. 🙂
You are one of the few people in this world that can make me WANT to eat quinoa! Love the colours in this, I totally want to dive in and grab one!
Thanks Nagi! I’m not one of those paleo, healthy eaters (nothing wrong with that though!) I’ve just been trying to incorporate some new grains and such whenever I can. It even took me over a year to “try” kale! Never been a bandwagon cook, you know – one who goes only with the latest trends, but I do try and branch out and try what all the commotion is about on occasion! I found it to be a great filler and tasty rice substitute when needed.
BUT I could easily live on white rice and pasta, while it’s not that great for Dave (unless the pasta is wheat). I think the chipotle in this made all the difference, it’s the only new thing I added to spice this house favorite up and decided to post it. 😉
Wow – homemade chorizo?! That is something I definitely need in my life! Great combination of flavors and texture!
Thanks Kathleen, give it a try and let me know what you think. Enjoy the beautiful weekend. 🙂
I love these stuffed peppers, Kevin! So colorful and vibrant and packed with nutrition. Not to mention layered with flavors. Such a great recipe!
Thank you Meggan for stopping by and the kind words. Feel free to check the Comment Luv next time and it will show a link of your most recent post, too. Have a great weekend… gotta love SoCal weather, right?
Wow, the color of those stuffed peppers is stunning! And you’ve stuffed them with so many flavors that I love!
Thanks Marissa, they hold up well and are quite filling. Love the colors and besides… it’s Spring! Have a great weekend.
Hey Kevin! These look fantastic! I love red bell peppers, they are so much sweeter and meatier than green ones. I must admit I have not tried quinoa, but I’m going to now!
I never get on bandwagons, but I do try the latest and greatest food trends to see whats up. Quinoa is a good one, so I try to replace the usual sometimes with it and try new things. Give it a go!
Hey Kevin! We went to the market today and I picked up everything needed for this! The only spice I needed was the ancho chile powder and my local butcher did right by me – I picked up a pound of ground pork for $2.75 which, considering prices these days, I consider a steal! I always use brown rice, except which I make sushi, but this might convert me! I’ll let you know!
Yay! Let me know what you think of these… and what a steal on that ground pork!
Hey Kevin! Made these tonight – OMG! My only critique is that there was more filling than I needed for the peppers, so I am making my husband an omelet with the rest of it! He is not objecting. Once again. thank you!
Maybe my peppers were big ones, who knows. I actually had some filling leftover too. I had it the next day for lunch, but the omelet idea is a great one!
The perfect weekend meal, absolutely love the flavors going on here!
Thanks Matt, and if you don’t want to make the chorizo you can always purchase and make this in minutes. Have a great weekend.
Love the flavors you have going on in these stuffed peppers, Kevin! Smoked paprika is such an overlooked spice, but I absolutely love using it in moderation. And the quinoa? Love using it instead of rice here. Two thumbs up to this awesome recipe! #WolfpackEats
Love the smoked paprika, but yes it can over power if abused. I am by no means a super healthy person, but I try to incorporate good stuff whenever possible! Have a great weekend. My site was hacked early Friday morning and I was surprised you were able to see the post and comment here. So it must have happened after you saw it and when I logged on 3 hours after. My code, sidebar and other items were completely switched around and I finally was able to fix. Changed my password and hope this will be the last time…
No way! That sounds awful, Kevin. I’m glad you were able to get back up and running again so quickly. I’ve never had anything that bad happen. Bah. Good reminder to change passwords, though. Hope you had a good weekend, my west coast friend!
Thanks Dave, it was definitely unnerving. I knew they had edited the home page php so luckily I knew enough to be dangerous and do some logical editing. Then went back in to the theme and re-did the sidebar widgets and such. Can’t believe its Sunday evening already… where’d the weekend go? Ha!