Italian style stuffed peppers

One of the easiest ways to make ground meat into a special meal is by stuffing it into an elegant “package.” Use any colored bell peppers, or even another type of vegetable, like a summer or winter squash, to make this all-in-one meal.


20 minutes


25-35 minutes


3-4 meal-sized servings


2 bell peppers, halved and cleaned

1 tablespoon bacon grease or coconut oil

1/2 large onion, diced

Sea salt and black pepper to taste

4 cloves garlic, pressed or chopped

1/2 cup diced tomatoes, fresh or canned

1 lb ground beef, bison, turkey,
or chicken

6 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped

Extra basil leaves for garnish



Stuff squash instead of peppers, and omit the tomatoes.


Omit the onions and garlic and stuff the mixture into squash instead of peppers.


Add 2 cups of finely chopped baby spinach to the meat.


It’s best not to use acidic ingredients (like tomatoes or vinegars) in cast iron cookware since the acid will interact with the iron. This is a good time to use an enameled cast-iron or stainless steel skillet.







Preheat oven to 375°F.

Place the bell pepper halves in a roasting dish face down for 10-15 minutes. (You can skip this step if you want to keep the peppers more firm/raw.)

While the bell peppers are cooking, heat the bacon grease or coconut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté the onions, adding sea salt and black pepper to taste, until they’re translucent and slightly browned on the edges. Add the tomatoes and garlic to the onions, and simmer for about two minutes.

Add the meat and cook until fully done. Taste the mixture, and adjust seasoning to your liking (more sea salt, more black pepper, etc.). Mix in the chopped basil.

Remove the peppers from the oven – they should be just a bit softened – and flip them over. Spoon the stuffing mixture into each one. You can go ahead and eat them at this point, or put them back in the oven for 15-20 minutes to allow the flavors of the bell pepper and the meat mixture to blend together more.

You can refrigerate or freeze and reheat later.