Unstuffed Peppers

4.98 from 613 votes

This unstuffed peppers bowl is loaded with flavor and is a great well balanced meal. With all the flavors of stuffed peppers, but so much quicker to make!

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If you love stuffed peppers, you’re going to love the idea of these Unstuffed Peppers! They have all the flavor and texture of traditional stuffed peppers but require less mess and less time to make. It’s a convenient quick recipe to make that’s loaded with so much goodness!

Two bowls of the unstuffed peppers recipes topped with cheese
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Unsuffed bell peppers are not only fast to make but they’re really delicious, too! Everyone in the family will love having this be what’s for dinner!

Perfect for a fast and easy weeknight meal or a fun way to cut out some carbs and focus on putting some good nutrition into your body.

Unstuffed versus stuffed peppers

  1. Less steps – Traditionally with stuffed peppers, you have to prepare the peppers in one dish, making the rice or quinoa in another pot, then core the peppers. Finally you bring all the ingredients together by stuffing them and baking them. Some nights that’s too many steps, and you just want to minimize the steps for making dinner.
  2. Less time – Instead of a 60 minute recipe, this one literally takes half the time from start to finish.
  3. Less clean up – Less cookware and bakeware involved when they’re not stuffed.
  4. Same amazing flavor – yes all the way!

IngredieNts to make Ground Beef unstuffed peppers

  • Bell peppers: You can use green or any other color. The closer to red, the sweeter the pepper.
  • Beef: It’s best to use lean ground beef for this recipe.
  • Rice: Use any type of rice to make the unstuffed peppers more filling and substantial.
  • Onions and garlic: For flavoring the ground beef and adding texture to the unstuffed bell pepper bowls.
  • Seasonings: Oregano, salt and pepper.
  • Tomato paste and tomato sauce: Tomato sauce brings the dish altogether. You can use canned or jarred and your favorite brand.
  • For serving: The unstuffed pepper mix is served in a bowl and you can add any toppings you want. I usually just add shredded cheese and chopped fresh parsley.
Ingredients to make unstuffed peppers

HOW to Make healthy Unstuffed Peppers

  1. Cook the ground beef and peppers in a skillet over medium heat. 
  2. Add the tomato paste once the beef is browned.
  3. Put in the diced tomatoes, rice, and water. Bring to a boil then reduce.
  4. Make sure the mixture is stirred well so that the seasonings are dispersed.
  5. Let cool a bit to help the rice soak in the flavors.
  6. Fluff with a fork and serve!
6 image collage to show how to make the recipe in one pot

Tips for making beef unstuffed peppers

  1. Use a different protein. You can easily make this with another ground meat like chicken, turkey, lamb or bison.
  2. Mix up your bowls. I love the flavor and texture of quinoa in these bowls, but you can easily swap it for rice or even pasta if you prefer.
  3. Add in other veggies. If you really want to load the veggies in, you can add in mushrooms, peas or beans when you cook the onions.
  4. Use spaghetti sauce. If you’re not a fan of tomato paste, you can easily use spaghetti saunce in its place.
  5. Leave out the meat. If you want to have a vegeterian unstuffed pepper, just leave out the meat and add in other peppers instead. Adding colored belll peppers can add a fun brightness to this dish!
Skillet with the unstuffed peppers recipe before serving

how to store ground beef bell peppers

Leftoves of this healthy pepper recipe are the best! Just add them to an airtight container and store them in the fridge. They’ll stay good for 2-3 days and reheat to perfection.

How to reheat unstuffed peppers with beef

The fastest way to reheat healthy unstuffed peppers is to use the microwave. Reheat in 30 second intervals until it’s hot. Make sure that you store in between times so that the heat gets dispersed all the way through.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you make this easy unstuffed peppers ahead of time?

Yes! These unstuffed peppers are so great for meal prep. The beef and pepper mixture will keep well for 3 to 4 days in the fridge. You can then quickly reheat it and add it to your bowl.

Can you freeze healthy unstuffed peppers?

Yes! You can make up a big batch of the ground beef mix and it makes for a great freezer meal. It will keep well for around 3 to 4 months. Thaw it in the fridge overnight and reheat it to serve.

What color bell pepper should you use?

You can use whatever color peppers you like in this recipe. I like to use a mix of red and orange for a sweeter flavor, but green will work just as well for a slightly more bitter flavor if you prefer. You can even use the sweet mini peppers.

Large bowl of unstuffed peppers topped with shredded cheese

This Unstuffed Peppers recipe is such a fun creative take on traditional stuffed peppers. And, like the other 74 bowl recipes in Lindsay’s book, it’s packed with superfoods and flavorful combinations of grain, protein, and vegetables! This is a whole complete comforting meal in just one bowl.

For more stuffed peppers recipes:

If you try this healthy-ish feel good Unstuffed Peppers recipe or any other recipe on Feel Good Foodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below! It helps others who are thinking of making the recipe. We would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots, share it on Instagram so we can repost on Stories!

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Unstuffed Peppers

This unstuffed peppers bowl is loaded with flavor and is a great well balanced meal. With all the flavors of stuffed peppers, but so much quicker to make!
5 from 613 votes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 333
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes



  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 2 green bell peppers chopped
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • ½ cup long grain white rice uncooked
  • 15 ounce canned diced tomatoes
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley


  • Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the ground beef, green peppers, onions, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper. Cook until beef is browned, about 7-10 minutes.
  • Add the tomato paste and saute until well combined and fragrant, about 2-3 minutes. Add the rice, diced tomatoes and water and stir to combine. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 45 minutes.
  • Remove from heat but keep covered for an additional 5-10 minutes. Fluff the rice with a fork to separate.
  • Serve in bowls garnished with shredded cheddar cheese and parsley.


Note: Cooking time will vary depending on the type of rice used. This recipe calls for regular long-grain white rice, which will take 45 minutes to fully cook.
Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container and eat within 2-3 days. 


Calories: 333kcal, Carbohydrates: 27g, Protein: 31g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 4g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 85mg, Sodium: 815mg, Potassium: 701mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 819IU, Vitamin C: 57mg, Calcium: 160mg, Iron: 4mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine American
Course: Main Course

Rate and comment

Recipe Rating


  1. Video says to simmer for 20 minutes. Recipe says to simmer 45 minutes. Recipe is the right time, not the video.

  2. This was a hit with the family! Everyone had seconds and was requested to be added to normal dinner rotation. Easy to prep and easy to cook. Loved it! Followed recipe to the “t” x 2. Soooo good!

  3. OMGosh this is outstanding – house smells delicious!!! I used ground turkey because it’s what I had, plus added corn for color. A real wower!!!

  4. This is a great one pan meal! I used quinoa and added a can of corn and sliced mushrooms plus some harissa & topped it with a dollop of plain yougurt- it was YUMMY!

  5. I used the kind of rice that the recipe calls for. It never softened even after adding extra liquid and cooking for nearly twice the directed time. Still has good flavor, but next time I will make the rice separately.

    1. So sorry about that, I appreciate you feedback. For 1/2 cup of rice the cooking time listed in the recipe should be more than enough time. Plus, the water called for in the recipe combined with the other ingredients has been the perfect amount of liquid for me to get the rice tender and fluffy. Did you bring the mixture all the way to a boil before cooking it at a simmer?

  6. I love a good one pot meal! The only thing I had to change was adding probably a cup and a half to two cups of liquid to cover the mixture. The rice was perfectly cooked after 30 minutes with the extra liquid. It also needs more seasoning than you think it will, but that’s probably bc of all the extra broth I added.

  7. This has quickly become a family favourite in my house. I used basmati rice and it worked just fine! I added a lot more garlic and used turkey instead of beef. Still great!

    1. Hi there,I’m very sorry to hear this didn’t come out as expected. What type of rice did you use? Cooking time will vary depending on the type of rice used. This recipe calls for regular long-grain white rice, you can use whatever type of rice you prefer, but it may take longer to soften.

  8. I’ve made this twice now and both times the rice has turned out hard 🙁 I followed the recipe to a tee and tried cooking for longer the second time and adding a little extra water but no luck. Not sure what I’m doing wrong but I really wanted to like this recipe

    1. So sorry to hear that! What type of rice are you using? Cooking time will vary depending on the type of rice used. This recipe calls for regular long-grain white rice, you can use whatever type of rice you prefer, but it may take longer to soften. You would just need to taste the mixture as you go and cook until the rice is soft.

  9. This is a family favorite! For nutrition facts, can you please tell me how many servings this makes? Thanks in Advance

  10. Absolutely a five star recipe!!! Not only is it delicious and nutritious but it’s a super easy one pot meal – highly recommend!!!

  11. OMGosh! My boys and i love this recipe ! And i feel like it is easier than stuffing peppers. I did make a couple changes according to what i had in the pantry: i used jar marinara sauce in place of the tomatoes ( one son has a LD and doesn’t like tomato chunks on his plate) and paste (just because i didn’t have any). It is definitely getting added to our dinner rotation!!

  12. This is one of my favorite weekday recipes! My husband and 2 year old love it, too!

    I have one question: I’m dieting right now, so I’m trying to log this into my calorie counter app. I see the nutritional information, but not the serving size. Can you tell me the serving size for the 333 calories, please? TIA!

  13. Great recipe! Quick and easy to make. It needed a little more seasoning in my opinion, but overall very tasty (we added some extra salt).

  14. We made this recipe this weekend & it was so good! My husband is a plastic surgery resident & it was such a quick fix for when he needed to take food to work. And our toddler also loved it. Definitely on rotation in our household now

  15. OMG it tasted just like I wanted it to! I did add 1 tbsp of chili sauce and tbsp or so of brown sugar because I like a hint of sweetness in a stuffed green pepper. SO so good.

  16. This was SO delicious!!! I added a seasoned salt instead of retailer and a can of corn like stated from another review and couldn’t get enough! No leftovers in this household!! Thank you for sharing your recipe!!

  17. Yummy I made this has a last-minute dinner and I use Italian sausage and hamburger meat and then I was making enterprise but still the flavor was amazing

    1. I haven’t tried that before, but I don’t see why you couldn’t. The risk would be that it’s a little more watery than intended.

  18. This was delicious and easy to make! I added some corn, dried parsley and Cajun spice. I used brown rice so it took an extra 15-20 minutes on simmer. Will definitely remake it!

  19. I made Unstuffed Peppers last night. This is a delicious & easy recipe! I will have leftovers for at least 3 days, which is the whole goal to my single living! I am sure I will make it again, but first I want to get through more of these delicious recipes. Thank you!

  20. LOVED this recipe! The peppers have such a better tasting role in this dish vs. the traditional method of stuffing them and not really seasoning. I followed this recipe to a tee and wouldn’t change a thing. There’s a lot of versatility with this dish though, I used ground beef but you can easily sub with another meat. I will definitely make this again and again. PS – it is even better the second day!

  21. I get a LOT of peppers from my CSA. This recipe is the bomb. So good. I use all the different peppers and tonight I substituted ground pork (last time ground bison). I will make again and again.

  22. Made this recipe and it is excellent! Super tasty and easy to make. Can’t wait to eat the leftovers tomorrow.

  23. This dish is amazing! It’s become a weekly dish in our household. Not only healthy but delicious. We always have leftovers because it makes a lot.

  24. I have made this dish a few times now. My wife keeps requesting it. This last time I changed it up a little by using ground turkey in place of ground beef, and I always use whatever bell peppers come to hand. Delicious and easy to adapt to what is available.

  25. Made these for dinner last night and it was FABULOUS! Lots of flavor…even better day 2 bringing it to work for lunch! It was very easy to make. This may be a normal rotation on our dinner menu. Thank you!