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Stuffed Peppers

As 2013 hit, Kurt and I decided we really want to start taking better care of ourselves. As you can see from the blog, I'm a BIG fan of comfort food (like, big big BIG fan). Unfortunately for our waistline, comfort food is not very healthy and does not aid in staying in shape. I've made a big push lately to eat healthier foods and try to use fresh ingredients.

I first saw this stuffed pepper idea pop up all over my online mom's group, like, everyone was making them! Then I saw them all over Pinterest and then my co-worker brought them in for lunch....I think you get the idea. They are everywhere and now I understand why! Stuffed peppers are delicious! After making them once, I keep thinking of new things to stuff them with. This recipe is sort of an "eyeball" type recipe as I didn't really have specific measurements so I more or less just eyeballed the ingredients.

Stuffed Peppers
Source: Adapted from Rachel, a mom friend of mine

5-7 peppers for stuffing (try to find ones with flatter bottoms)
1 lb. ground beef
1 cup white rice
1 can diced tomatoes (I used diced tomatoes with garlic and sweet onion)
1/2-1 onion, chopped
1 small jar your favorite spaghetti sauce (I used Newman's Own Sockarooni)
Shredded mozzarella cheese
Any add-ins you'd like

1. Cook the rice. While rice is cooking brown the ground beef and saute the onions in EVOO. 

2. When everything is cooked, mix the beef, onions, rice, and the canned tomatoes in a large bowl. Add about 1/3 of the jar of spaghetti sauce to coat the mixture.

3. Cut the tops off of the peppers and clean out the insides. I used a paring knife to cut away the membranes or used my fingers to pull them out. Stuff the peppers with the meat/rice mixture and place them in a baking dish (I used an 8x8 baking dish but you can use whatever works for you).

4. Pour the remaining spaghetti sauce over the peppers and in the bottom of the baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes. After 30 minutes add some mozzarella to the top and bake for another 15-20 minutes or until peppers are soft.

**We like our peppers with a little crunch. For softer peppers I've heard of people cutting the peppers length-wise b/c more of the pepper cooks in the sauce. I've also heard of people roasting their peppers for a little bit first.

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