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Mexican Stuffed Bell Peppers

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Stuffed bell peppers with ground beef black beans tomatoes and rice and cheese

Mexican Stuffed Bell Peppers – stuffed with ground beef, black beans, rice, tomatoes, spiced just right with Mexican spices, topped with grated Cheddar and Mozzarella cheese. Baked in a meatless tomato sauce (right from the jar).

Mexican Stuffed Peppers

These delicious stuffed peppers make amazing dinner! They are baked in tomato sauce because it doesn’t let them dry up during baking process and also expands your options for serving. These bell peppers can be served as-is, on a regular plate without tomato sauce:

bell peppers stuffed with ground beef, black beans, rice, tomatoes, and cheese


Or, you can serve them in a bowl, with a little bit of the tomato sauce at the bottom, which makes them more moist and flavorful – I prefer them that way:

green bell peppers in tomato sauce, ground beef in tomato sauce

They are super easy to make – fill the peppers with the filling according to the recipe, and place them in a baking dish:

Baked stuffed green bell peppers

Fill the baking dish with tomato sauce and sprinkle the peppers and the sauce with cheese:

green bell pepeprs stuffed with mexican ground beef black beans rice tomatoes and cheese

Cover with foil and bake until heated through! Enjoy!

gluten free stuffed bell peppers, gluten free dinner recipe

Mexican Stuffed Bell Peppers

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: 6 servings

Serving Size: 1 stuffed pepper

Mexican Stuffed Bell Peppers


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 pound beef
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup rice, cooked, or 1/2 cup rice (uncooked)
  • 1/2 can black beans (about 8 oz - whole can is 15 oz), rinsed
  • 1 large tomato, chopped into small slices
  • 6 medium size green bell peppers
  • 2/3 cup marinara meatless spaghetti tomato sauce
  • 2/3 cup water or less - judge for yourself
  • mozzarella cheese
  • cheddar cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Heat the skillet on stove top until hot, add olive oil - it should sizzle. Immediately add ground beef and cook it constantly stirring intill nicely browned and cooked through. Remove from heat. Drain all excess fat. Add 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1/4 teaspoon salt to cooked ground beef, stir to combine.
  3. To the same skillet, off heat, add black beans, chopped tomatoes, and cooked rice. Note: make sure to rinse black beans really well and drain. Add more spices: 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1/4 teaspoon salt to beef, stir to combine.
  4. Prepare bell peppers for stuffing: cut the tops off, stem and seed them.
  5. Stuff each bell pepper with the filling. Fill the baking dish with marinara spaghetti sauce and up to 2/3 cups of water (don't pour all water at once - just pour enough to make the marinara sauce less dense). Place stuffed bell peppers tightly into prepared baking dish, cavity side up. In my case, I used 2 large bread pans. Top each pepper with both grated Mozzarella and Cheddar cheese. Sprinkle some cheese over the tomato sauce too. Cover with foil
  6. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until the peppers are tender and the filling is hot. Serve in shallow bowls, with some of tomato sauce on the bottom.



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{ 33 comments… add one }
  • ahu @ ahueats September 24, 2014, 3:18 pm

    Julia these are great! I love how almost every culture has their own version of stuffed bell peppers – ours has no cheese but I’ll be honest this looks sooooo good! Who doesn’t like melted cheese!

  • Matt @ Runner Savvy September 24, 2014, 8:11 pm

    Totally making these!

  • Shashi at runninsrilankan September 25, 2014, 8:15 am

    Julia – I love these stuffed peppers with cumin, so versatile and fun- what a great dinner idea – thank you!

  • Lindsey @ American Heritage Cooking September 25, 2014, 7:28 pm

    Gahh!! I am drooling over this twist on stuffed peppers! What a great idea! Your pictures are gorgeous as always! Pinned!

  • Tash September 26, 2014, 5:07 pm

    Hi Julia,
    I must admit that one of my favourite meals is stuffed peppers. I tend to do ours with a mix of oatmeal, breadcrumbs, cheese, egg, onions, mushrooms and sometimes chestnuts. It makes a very easy and satisfying meal. I hadn’t thought of taking a Mexican twist, but yours do look delicious! 🙂

  • Juliana September 26, 2014, 8:32 pm

    Oh Julia, I love this Mexican version of stuffed bell peppers…they look absolutely delicious…
    Have a wonderful weekend 😀

  • Daniela September 28, 2014, 8:58 am

    Bell Peppers are so tasty and versatile and I love the filling with a spicy Mexican touch!

  • Julie's Family Kitchen September 28, 2014, 2:38 pm

    Hi Julia, I’ve just discovered your lovely blog whilst browsing Pinterest. I love finding great food blogs. Your recipe for stuffed peppers looks really delicious and the photos are beautiful. Julie

    • Julia September 30, 2014, 3:15 pm

      Julie, thank you so much for your sweet comment!

  • Ashley September 28, 2014, 3:02 pm

    Stuffed peppers always make me think of my childhood – we ate them all the time! These sound delicious – especially with the mexican spin!

  • Kiran @ KiranTarun.com October 2, 2014, 6:41 pm

    Loving the Mexican flavors in this stuffed peppers! Yum 🙂

    • Julia October 3, 2014, 2:45 pm

      Thanks, Kiran! 🙂

  • jennifer October 3, 2014, 11:34 am

    look delish – can they be frozen and cooked later?

    • Julia October 3, 2014, 2:45 pm

      Yes, they can.

  • Maria October 10, 2014, 5:41 pm

    This just looks so delicious !! Totally making this

    • Julia October 14, 2014, 10:29 pm

      Glad to hear it! 🙂

  • Kristie October 29, 2014, 11:47 pm

    This looks fantastic! I’m definitely going to try it 🙂

  • Amanda December 22, 2014, 4:42 pm

    Has anyone tried using enchilada sauce instead of marinara? I found this recipe when I googled ‘sauce-less stuffed peppers’
    I planned on making my regular recipe but realized I am out of marinara. I do have enchilada sauce so I think I’m going to try it. I’ll follow up!!

    • steven April 17, 2015, 2:59 pm

      This recipe is terrible. How can you call them mexican stuffed peppers then cook them in marinara sauce.

  • CP January 13, 2015, 12:05 am

    The recipe calls for black beans but doesn’t specify how they’re prepared. Shouldn’t they be soaked, rinsed, and cooked before being added to filling mix?

    • MJ August 27, 2016, 6:54 pm

      The recipe calls for canned beans. They are cooked during the canning process. If you are using dried beans you will need to cook them before adding them to the meat mixture.

  • Cyndi March 2, 2015, 8:31 pm

    We made these for dinner. Found that the peppers need a longer cooking time, maybe an hour and a quarter total to make the peppers soft. Great flavor, though.

    • kate February 7, 2017, 11:19 pm

      I also found that these peppers needed a longer cooking time. Put them in for 35 min and when I checked them they were still hard. My oven is also electric so maybe that’s also why…? Not really sure, but cooking time was way too short.

  • Angela March 8, 2015, 12:13 am

    Great recipe. The only thing I would change is to boil the peppers before stuffing and baking. Only cooking them leaves them quite firm and requiring cutting into. Still a success and will try again !

  • steven April 17, 2015, 2:57 pm

    These are absolutely terrible. Followed directions word for word ended up with food drier than dog food. Consider a new profession.

    • RHUBARB March 9, 2017, 10:31 pm


  • Carmen May 27, 2015, 8:32 pm

    Julia, thank you so much for sharing your recipe. The dish is absolutely delicious!

  • Bernadette August 22, 2016, 4:09 am

    Next time I would do with more spices and garlic and onion as it was quite bland for us… I made it with red peppers and instead of just black beans I added Mexican mixed veggies. What a colour transformation ☺

  • kate February 8, 2017, 7:59 pm

    I wanted to also mention that the amount of spices in this, especially the cumin was a bit much. Cumin is very strong so when it called for 2 tsp I was a little unsure, but I did it anyway and turns out I should have stopped at 1 tsp. Also, I did not add the chili powder bc I cannot eat spicy food and I did not water down the red sauce (instead of water I used more red sauce). I like my sauce to be thicker and I’m glad I did that. I also used a pound of ground beef instead of 1/2 a pound and did not drain it (i think those juices add more flavor). All in all I think it was a good recipe and my husband agreed. If I make it again I would tone it down with the spices.

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