Enchilada Stuffed Peppers

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As it turns out, getting a new job, getting married, planning and going on an 18 day honeymoon in Hawaii all while trying to maintain a social life is JUST ENOUGH to prohibit me from blogging like I used to!  Sheesh!  Imagine that.

I’m more than happy to be back to share the first of many awesome recipes I’ve been busy with in my kitchen for you today.  This recipe is my first attempt at Stuffed Peppers- something Dave and I first tried on our trip to Israel  and that I have promised to make for him since.  It’s only taken 3.5 years.  No big deal.

I will be the first to admit that bell peppers are not my favorite ingredient.  I know they’re so basic and in everything, I just am not their biggest fan, so I guess I wasn’t super excited to try these out.  I think it was my trust in one of my favorite bloggers, Nikki from Chef in Training that gave me the courage to try this new recipe out (she’s fabulous, check out her blog!).  Her recipe for Enchilada Stuffed Bell Peppers caught my attention, especially because I already had most of the ingredients in my pantry.  Score!

Enchilada Stuffed Peppers
Recipe slighly adapted from: Chef in Training

Ingredients:

6 Red Bell Peppers  

1lb Ground Turkey, lean

2 Zucchinis, chopped small

1 – 15oz can Black Beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup Corn

1 cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese (plus a little extra for topping)

10oz can Enchilada Sauce

1 teaspoon Cumin

1 teaspoon Salt & 1 teaspoon Pepper

Fat Free Sour Cream for topping (optional)

Directions:

1.  Cut just the tops off the bell peppers and hollow out the insides.  Place in a large baking pan or pyrex dish and set aside.  

2.   In a large skillet, brown and chop ground turkey and the zucchini until cooked through and juices run clear and the zucchini is starting to soften.  

3.  Place turkey/zucc mixture in a large mixing bowl and add the black beans, corn, cheese, enchilada sauce, cumin and salt and stir until everything is combined.  

4.  Stuff each bell pepper to the top.  Cover the pan with foil.

5.  Bake in the oven at 350 for 1 hour.  Remove pan and foil and sprinkle a little extra cheese on the top and bake uncovered for another 5 minutes or so until the cheese is melted.  ENJOY!

 

Peppers ready to be stuffed

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The original recipe calls for a little more ground turkey, which I didn’t have handy, so I used the chopped zucchini, which worked just fabulously.  You could really use whatever vegetables you wanted!  If you chop them into nice, small pieces, it will work perfectly.

My new job requires me to work one “late day” each week, so this stuffed pepper recipe was perfect for that type of day.  I did all the cooking in the morning, which didn’t take long… then I stuffed the peppers and prepared them in the dish and stuck them in the fridge.  When I left work for my 45 min commute home, Dave popped them in the oven and dinner was ready when I got home!  It was perfect.

We ate the peppers for lunches the rest of the week- they are absolutely delicious.  The enchilada sauce makes the dish so flavorful and spicy, and I just love hot lunches in the wintertime.  I can’t wait to try new versions of this!  Who knows, maybe this will be the start of me finally liking bell peppers?

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Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Baked Potato

I have a new obsession:  Shredded Chicken.

But first, my original inspiration for making dinner on this particular night was a recipe I have had my eyes on for like, a year.  What’s really weird is that the post on The Girl Who Ate Everything came out exactly 2 years ago today!  I was finally all ready to make her Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese when I spotted a big bag of potatoes.  I totally forgot I even had them.  Hm… what can I do with the potatoes?  I got it:  Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Baked Potatoes.  YUP- that’s it!

The inspiration! From The Girl Who Ate Everything- one of my favorite blogs

So, for this recipe… you really only need to use one chicken breast for every two servings (potatoes) if you’re using the normal sized chicken breasts.  If you use the thin sliced cutlets, you probably want to use one chicken per potato.  Everything else has no measurements because you can really do whatever you want with it!

Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Baked Potatoes

Ingredients:

Baking Potato

Chicken Breast

Carrot

Celery

Cilantro & Green Onion

Hot Sauce- Frank’s… duh

Butter

Blue Cheese

Blue Cheese Dressing (I super-duper recommend THIS dressing… it’s NOT bad for you at all and it tastes amazing)

Directions:

1.  Wash the potatoes and pat them dry.  Cut a line down the middle (lengthwise) so the potatoes don’t burst.  Put them right in the oven that’s preheated to 400 degrees.  Don’t use any oil, salt, foil, etc.  Just stick them in there, cut-side-up and bake them for an hour.

2.  Meanwhile, cook the chicken breasts either by boiling them or sprinkle a touch of salt and pepper and heat them on a cooking spray coated grill pan.  Remove from heat and cool.

3.  Now, chop up some celery and carrots.  I used a handful of baby carrots and two celery stalks.  Put aside. 

4.  Take the chicken and shred them using two forks.  Put the shredded chicken in a medium-sized saucepan with a Tablespoon of butter and as much hot sauce as you’d like.  I probably started with 1/4 cup.  Let the butter melt and mix everything together.  Keep on warm/low heat.

5.  Remove potatoes from the oven.  You’ll know when they’re done when a fork can easily go in and be removed.  Squeeze each end of the potato to open up the cut you did earlier.  Stuff with a spoonful or two of the chicken, then put on some celery and carrots, and a teaspoon of Blue Cheese Crumbles.  Repeat.  Now garnish with some Cilantro and Green Onion, Hot Sauce and Blue Cheese Dressing.  

Shredded chicken soaking in the butter and hot sauce mixture

This is the Blue Cheese Dressing I was telling you about- I really like it, and they have a few other flavors too. It’s in the refrigerated salad/dressing section

Steamin’ hot!

I want another now! So yummy!

So, this ended up being a great idea, right?  OMG.  YUMMMM.  First of all, it tasted just as good as it looks in these pictures.  For real.  Also, I had so much chicken leftover, that I was able to use it in two other meals I made that week.  Shredding the chicken makes it look like there’s so much more… and I guess it makes it last longer too.  The sauce can also get all nice and soaked up in the chicken.  This one’s a winner, and I’ll DEF be making it again.

Now, if I can only get my act together to make that Buff Chick Macaroni and Cheese!