Vegan Stuffed Peppers – Awesome Make Ahead Whole Food Meal – Fast Prep

Knowing that I would be ravenous after Yoga, and not wanting to fall victim to the ,”let’s just order takeout,” post-workout sabotage, I was a good little grown-up and pre-made these peppers before class. They keep well; at least five days in the fridge, and you could freeze them and keep them for even longer.

This recipe yields just 4 halves, or 2 peppers, but feel to double, triple or quadruple that for having an awesome, comforting, healthy dinner anytime! They are great on their own, but if you desire them to be saucy, pair with a nice marinara, vegan cheese sauce, or gravy.

I utilized a product that I have seen for a few months at Trader Joe’s. Riced cauliflower, is available in both the refrigerated section, fresh, as well a freezer section, frozen. I don’t know how they behave differently, but I went with the fresh. I could scream at how easy it is to get things like riced cauliflower now that Paleo and Low Carb diets are all the craze. Back when I was a  raw foodie in 2003, I would have killed for some easy to get cauliflower rice. I always had to make it myself, from scratch. I also had to walk five miles in the NYC cold, streets to get that cauliflower (not really but I like mocking myself when I complain).

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If you can’t get riced cauliflower, you can super finely mince the cauliflower, or use a food processor to do it, just don’t grind it into a paste.

Ingredients: 

4oz tempeh (1/2 of an 8oz cake, the size it is usually sold), finely diced

1/2 cup onion, finely diced

1 cup packed kale, finely chopped

1.5  cups riced cauliflower

1 cup tomatoes, diced

1/2 cup bread crumbs, panko, italian, or gluten free (you can also sub almond meal)

1 teas. fennel seeds

1/2 teas. red pepper flakes, or more if you like it spicy!

2 teas. dried oregano

1 teas. dried basil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 TB olive oil, or veggie broth if not eating oil

1/4 cup red or white wine (optional if you already have some open or have cooking wine)

2 medium – to large peppers, sliced in half, seeds and stem  removed

salt pepper to taste

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Directions:
Heat the oil or veggie broth in a large skillet, or cast iron pan, on medium high heat. First, brown the chopped tempeh for 2 minutes.  Add the onions, sauté for 2 more minutes. Add the cauliflower, tomatoes, garlic, oregano, basil, fennel seeds, and red pepper flakes, and sauté for 2 more minutes. Lastly add the kale, and cook till the kale turns soft, and bright green about 1 more minutes. Deglaze the pan with wine if using, and allow the alcohol to cook off for a minute or two, then remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the bread crumbs, and salt and pepper to taste.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Divide the filling into 4 parts, and stuff each pepper half, really pressing the filling down firm and compact.
Place peppers in a baking dish, or large cast iron skillet, and bake at 375 for 45 minutes – 1 hour, depending on how soft you like your peppers.
They are done now, or ready to be stored for later eating! Serve with marinara, a creamy or cheesy sauce, or gravy.
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