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Southwest Turkey Taco Stuffed Peppers

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Roasted bell peppers stuffed with a super easy one pot turkey taco rice mixture covered in melty Mexican cheese topped off with taco-y toppings to make it the most epic dinner. This stuffed pepper recipe is perfect for a quick, easy, and family friendly dinner!

roasted bell pepper stuffed with turkey and rice mixture covered in cheese and sprinkled with cilantro, pickled red onion in the corner

Lately I’ve been really trying to focus on healthy and budget friendly meals for my family. After grabbing a big bag of bell peppers at Costco last week I started craving stuffed peppers, but wanted something different than my very popular philly cheese stuffed peppers. These Taco Stuffed Peppers sounded PERFECT. I’ve made them many times before, but made the rice and ground turkey separately so I decided to combine the two and cook in one pot for less mess and stress, yes ma’am that’s what I’m about these days! These are so delicious- you’re gonna love’m.

I like to make’m extra special and to off with my favorite lime crema from my beloved Chicken Fajita Bowl recipe (don’t worry I’ll include that in the post and notes), pickled red onions, diced avocado, and fresh cilantro. But, trust me, they are total perfection without any bells or whistles so add the extra goodies, or leave’m alone- they are totally epic either way.

Grab your ingredients!

ingredients: measuring cup of uncooked rice, small bowl of diced onions, jar of better than bouillon, Goya tomato sauce, southwest seasoning, bowl of raw ground turkey, bowl of shredded cheese, cutting board with bell peppers cut in half
  • Olive Oil
  • large Bell Peppers- Red, yellow, orange, or green will work just fine here.
  • Diced Onion- yellow onion or white onion
  • Ground Turkey- I use 93/7 for better flavor than the 99% lean ground turkey, but you can do what you want! You could also easily switch it up with ground chicken or ground beef too.
  • Garlic Powder, Ground Cumin, Chili Powder, Smoked Paprika– I like my simple blend of seasonings, but you can use a taco seasoning packet too.
  • Better than bouillon- I love this stuff- it’s an instant flavor booster and the jar lasts in the fridge for a long time. You can use chicken or beef base here. You can find this in any grocery store near the cartons and cans of broth/stock.
  • Tomato sauce- This adds a rich tomato-y flavor to the taco and rice stuffing.
  • Long grain white rice- This recipe was tested using uncooked long grain white rice, please note using a different type of rice will not cook up the same. Different rice need different amounts of liquid and different cook times. If you really want to go with a different rice I would suggest cooking seperately and mixing together once the meat is cooked and seasoned.
  • Water
  • Shredded Mexican Blend Cheese made with 2% milk- Or any shredded melty cheese you desire!
  • Kosher Salt and Pepper
  • Cooking Spray- I prefer avocado oil cooking spray

How to make Taco Stuffed Peppers

These Taco Stuffed Peppers truly take no time to throw together! Prep peppers, make the turkey taco and rice mixture in one pot while the peppers roast away in the oven, then stuff the peppers and add whatever taco-y toppings your hearts desire.

Prep the peppers

  • Make sure to get peppers that are large, bright, and shiny. No soft spots or moldy stems here. I use a mix of yellow, orange, and red bell peppers.
  • Slice the peppers in half from stem to base and clean out all the seeds and membranes. I find its easiest to do this with a spoon.
  • Place peppers on a sheet pan and spray with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • Place peppers in a preheated oven to roast at the same time you start to cook the turkey and rice mixture. Cook for about 20 minutes.

Make Taco and Rice Filling

  • In a large skillet over medium heat, heat a teaspoon of olive oil and add diced onions. Season with salt and pepper and cook until softened.
  • When the onions are soft, add in the ground turkey and break up with a spatula. Add garlic powder, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, and kosher salt. Continue to cook til the ground turkey is browned and cooked through.
  • When the turkey is cooked, add better than bouillon, tomato sauce, water, and uncooked rice to the pan. Stir together well and bring to a gentle boil.
  • Reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cover the pan with a tight fitting lid. Cook for 20-22 minutes. Check rice by take a few grain out gently with a spoon. If it still has a bite, put the lid back on, and continue to cook for another couple of minutes.
    *Note* If your lid has a hole in it that releases steam stuff a little piece of aluminum foil in it to block it.
    Here’s my favorite large skillet with lid!
  • When the rice is all cooked remove the lid and fluff with a fork or gently toss with a wooden spoon.

Stuff roasted peppers with turkey taco and rice filling evenly, top with cheese, and bake for about 4-5 minutes until cheese is nice and melted.


Make Lime Crema (optional)

bowl of sour cream being stirred on a wooden cutting board with limes on the side

In a small add 3/4 cup light sour cream, juice from one lime, 1 tsp garlic powder and kosher salt. Stir together well. Add water a tablespoon at a time until its drippy consistency. Top peppers with about 2-3 tablespoons.

Add toppings!

taco stuffed pepper topped with lime crema, pickled onion, cilantro, avocado

I personally love this one loaded up with lots of my favorite taco toppings, just like a taco with all the fixin’s, but in a stuffed pepper. That being said, they are perfectly delicious as is if you don’t want extra fuss in the kitchen and like to lean on the side of simplicity. Promise. I tend to be a bit extra from time to time.

  • lime crema (or just sour cream!)
  • diced avocado
  • cilantro
  • pickled onions
  • crushed tortilla chips
  • guacamole
  • pico de Gallo
  • diced tomatoes
  • salsa

What to serve with Taco Stuffed Peppers

Storage, Reheating, Freezing Info

Storage: store in an air tight container in the refrigerator for 4-5 days.
Reheating: You can reheat in the microwave, oven, or air fryer. Microwave: 2-3 minutes. Oven: 350 degrees, about 20 minutes. Air Fryer: 360 degrees, 5-8 minutes.
Freezer: Make sure the taco stuffed peppers are completely cool before freezing. You can freeze in a freezer safe casserole dish with a lid. You can also save freezer space by placing peppers on a sheet pan and placing them in the freezer until frozen, then wrap in foil or Saran Wrap individually and add into a freezer bag. To cook after frozen, let them thaw completely in the fridge then bake for 30-35 minutes until heating thoroughly.

taco stuffed peppers on a sheet pan topped with lime crema, pickled onions, diced avocado

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roasted yellow bell pepper stuffed with turkey taco and rice mixture and topped with cheese and some fresh cilantro
Print
5 from 8 votes

Southwest Turkey Taco Bell Peppers

Roasted bell peppers stuffed with a super yummy southwestern ground turkey and rice mixture and topped with cheese.
Prep Time5 minutes
Active Time35 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: easy dinner, stuffed peppers, taco stuffed peppers
Yield: 8
Calories: 270kcal
Author: Star @ the skinny-ish dish

Materials

  • 4 red/yellow/orange bell peppers cut in half with seeds and membranes removed
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 medium diced onion
  • 1 lb lean ground turkey
  • 8 oz can tomato sauce (equals about 3/4 cup)
  • 3 tsp garlic powder
  • tsp EACH chili powder and cumin
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 cup uncooked long grain white rice *must be long grain white rice, not instant, brown, jasmine, etc
  • 1 tbsp low sodium better than bouillon can use beef or chicken base
  • 2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup shredded Mexican cheese made with 2% milk (or whatever cheese you desire)
  • cooking spray
  • kosher salt and pepper

*Optional toppings*

  • lime crema *recipe in blog post and notes*
  • diced avocado, pico de Gallo cilantro, pickled red onion, guacamole, sour cream

Instructions

Prep the peppers

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Slice the peppers in half from stem to base and clean out all the seeds and membranes.
  • Place peppers on a sheet pan and spray with cooking spray and season the inside and outside with salt and pepper. 
    When you start to cook the rice, place peppers in a preheated oven so the stuffing and peppers are done at about the same time.
    Roast peppers for about 20 minutes.

Make Turkey Taco and Rice Stuffing

  • In a large skillet over medium heat, heat olive oil and add diced onions. Season with salt and pepper and cook until softened.
  • When the onions are soft, add in the ground turkey and break up with a spatula. Add garlic powder, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, and 1/2 tsp kosher salt. Continue to cook til the ground turkey is browned and cooked through. 
  • When the turkey is cooked, add better than bouillon, tomato sauce, water, and uncooked rice to the pan. Stir together well and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce heat to a gentle simmer and cover the pan with a tight fitting lid.
  • Cook the mixture for about 20-22 minutes until rice is cooked. Check rice by scooping a few grains out gently with a spoon. If it still has a bite, put the lid back on, and continue to cook for another couple of minutes. 
    When the rice is all cooked remove the lid and fluff with a fork or gently toss with a wooden spoon
    *Note: If your lid has a hole in it that releases steam stuff a little piece of aluminum foil in it to block it. 

Make Turkey Taco Stuffed Peppers

  • Evenly stuff the taco meat and rice mixture into each pepper, evenly sprinkle shredded cheese onto each pepper.
    Place sheet pan back into the oven to let the cheese melt, about 5 minutes.
    If you want to, top stuffed peppers with favorite taco toppings like diced avocado, pickled red onions, pico de Gallo, cilantro, lime crema, crushed tortilla chips, guacamole for an even more delicious and impressive meal!

Notes

serving size: 1 stuffed pepper half (makes 8 peppers)
270 calories, 8g fat, 3g saturated fat, 400g sodium, 30g carbohydrates, 3g dietary fiber, 7g sugar (0g added sugar, 0g sugar alcohols), 27g net carbs, 19g protein
WW Points: 6 Points 
optional topping recipe: lime crema
In a small bowl add 3/4 cup light sour cream, juice from one lime, 1 tsp garlic powder and kosher salt. Stir together well. Add water one tablespoon at a time until its a drippy consistency. Top peppers with about 1-2 tablespoons as desired.

Storage, Reheating, Freezing Info

Storage: store in an air tight container in the refrigerator for 4-5 days.
Reheating: You can reheat in the microwave, oven, or air fryer. Microwave: 2-3 minutes. Oven: 350 degrees, 20-25 minutes. Air Fryer: 360 degrees, 5-8 minutes.
Freezer: Make sure the taco stuffed peppers are completely cool before freezing. You can freeze in a freezer safe casserole dish with a lid. You can also save freezer space by placing peppers on a sheet pan and placing them in the freezer until frozen, then wrap in foil or Saran Wrap individually and add into a freezer bag. To cook after frozen, let them thaw completely in the fridge then bake for 30-35 minutes until heating thoroughly.
*If you want to use different rice like brown rice, cauliflower rice, etc- I suggest cooking it separate and then mixing the turkey taco meat together. Do not add the water. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1stuffed pepper half | Calories: 270kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 407mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 7g

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7 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Made these for dinner tonight! I had two with all the toppings. Best meal I’ve made in a long time. Can’t wait to try more recipes!!!

  2. 5 stars
    We LOVED this recipe! Very easy and delicious. Thanks for the tip about putting the peppers in the oven to roast at the same time that you start cooking the rice. The timing was perfect. I added more spice because we like things a little spicy. The flavors were perfect, though. We served with baked potatoes. My husband said “it was out of this world!”. Thanks for another fabulous recipe.

    1. Hi Chrissy!! I’m SO happy you and your husband enjoyed these! Thank you so much for stopping back to comment and rate, appreciate you!

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