Unstuffed Peppers

Try these Unstuffed Peppers for an easy, healthy dinner! Our kids actually EAT the peppers when we cut them up and mix them in with the seasoned beef!

Who doesn’t love easy, 15 minute dinners like this? Be sure and try our equally easy Beefy Tomato Soup or this 8 minute air fryer or 15 minute oven dinner, Chinese Boneless Spareribs!

Unstuffed Peppers on a green plate over rice

A Dinner Recipe Your Kids Will Love!

Do you love making stuffed peppers? I mean, yes, I do. But my kids will hungrily eat the filling out and leave that big pepper behind. Recently we’ve made more stuffed pepper recipes that I absolutely LOVE. And I have to say our kids actually do eat the pepper now, we’ve got ’em trained;)

I can’t say too much, I did that too for most of my life. We weren’t a big vegetable family growing up so the bowl of frozen peas and carrots was only on the table for special occasions or holidays.

Now we try and have fresh vegetables on the table every night, or at least a dinner that involves vegetables like stuffed peppers. So to prevent our kids from just eating the filling we created this Unstuffed Pepper recipe instead.

All you need to do is dice the peppers and cook them with the beef and onions when you make the “filling”, but the filling is the dinner.

ground beef and peppers filling for unstuffed peppers recipe

Once you add the tomato sauce and let the beef simmer together with the vegetables…you won’t be able to stop eating it right from the pan.

How Do You Serve These Unstuffed Peppers?

We like to serve this recipe over rice or pasta like elbow macaroni (really any pasta will do, it’s almost like a meat sauce with peppers) but you can also serve it over cauliflower rice for a low carb dinner!

Piling this beef filling on buns like a peppery sloppy joe also works. A topping for nachos, add beans and make a quick chili…there’s so many things you can do with this Unstuffed Peppers recipe besides just eating it as is!

Unstuffed Peppers are an easy stuffed pepper recipe that is kid friendly

Do I Have To Make This Recipe With Beef?

Nope, you can use ground turkey or pork or even ground chicken or lamb. The peppers kind of have to stay or this wouldn’t be a twist on a stuffed pepper recipe but you can definitely swap out the type of meat.

On that note, you can absolutely sneak more vegetables into this recipe, too! We have teenage boys in our house now so we’re WAY past trying to get our kids to eat.

WAY past that. Now we just try and keep our refrigerators full of food. Going to the grocery store every 2 or 3 days is not unheard if. ALL THEY DO IS EAT.

But I do feel like we gave them a good food foundation, not making too many separate meals when they were young (I won’t say never, just not often)  and introducing them to all sorts of different foods as much as we could. Dinner recipes like this one definitely helped when they were younger, they ate this up like rock stars, and still do!

Need More Easy Dinner Ideas?


Unstuffed Peppers

  • Author: Dan
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x

This super easy dinner recipe will help get the vegetables in your kids mouths instead of leaving them behind!



  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 3 cups diced bell peppers (mixed colors)
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups of tomato sauce


  1. Add the olive oil to a skillet over medium heat. Brown the ground beef until cooked through and drain any excess grease form the pan.
  2. Add the peppers, onions and garlic to the beef. Stir and cook for 5-7 minutes until the vegetables are softened.
  3. Add in the cumin, salt and pepper, soy sauce, worcestershire sauce and the tomato sauce. Stir well to combine and then taste for seasonings.
  4. Simmer over low heat for 10 minutes and serve.
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

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46 Responses
  1. Tracey

    I love stuffed peppers so when I saw this recipe I knew I had to try it. I loved it. I had my Dad try it. He’s not a pepper fan. He had 3 helpings of it. It was an easy recipe and very flavorful. I swapped the cumin for chili powder. Will definitely make it again.

    1. Dan

      T is tablespoon, It’s an old recipe, I’ve since started writing out tablespoon and teaspoon. Thanks for asking!

  2. Emily

    I don’t usually leave comments on her but I have some time as I sit here eating the cereal that has replaced this recipe. I followed the recipe exactly and it was grossly salty. Unfixable salty. I am so disappointed because I’ve been looking forward to this.

    1. Ashley

      I also could not eat this. SO disappointing after all the work I put into it and all the ingredients wasted. It was terribly salty but not only that, the cumin was incredibly overpowering to the point of being completely inedible! A tablespoon and a half of cumin?? That can’t possibly be correct! I was so excited about this recipe and very upset it didn’t work out.

      1. Dan

        Ashley, actually the cumin amount is correct – we do like our cumin! I actually had to make this again before I commented back to you just to make sure! Sorry to hear that it didn’t work out for you.

    2. Sabah

      And this is the recipe writer’s fault how? Shouldn’t you know how much salt and cumin you like? Any home cook knows you’re supposed to taste along the way and if it’s a new spice you’re not familiar with, add a little and taste, then keep adding a little and tasting until it tastes good to you. I love cumin and so i would have no problem with 1.5 T of it in my dish. However, i take issue with the soy sauce and worcestershire. I don’t understand why chinese and English flavoring liquids are being used in a south american/middle eastern recipe, although i appreciate how they might add a rich and robust flavor that is otherwise lacking int his dish. So when I make this, I don’t add any soy sauce or worcestershire sauce but instead add middle eastern 7-spice, coriander powder, tomato paste to enhacne the tomato flavour and add the umami flavor that the soy sauce and worcestershire would have added while being more authentic to the dish, and a bit of chili flake or chili powder.

      1. Dan

        You’ve got the right idea – you should definitely take my recipes (or any recipes) and customize them to your liking!

      2. Ashley

        Actually, since I’ve last commented the recipe has been revised to 2 tsp cumin as opposed to the 1.5 TBSP that was in the initial recipe. That is a dramatic difference. I do agree I should have tested instead of assuming it would come out well, lesson learned.

        1. Dan

          We do like a lot of cumin flavor in this recipe, but we tested it quite a few more times and decide to cut the amount in half so that readers can add more or less to your tasting. We do listen to your comments!

  3. Cat

    This dish is delicious! Will make again and again. Had as lettuce wraps tonight to save myself the carbs but looking forward to having it over rice next time. Thank you!!

    1. Dan

      We do the same thing! Our kids love it over rice or pasta but we either eat it plain or in a lettuce wrap! Also it’s great over riced cauliflower if you’ve ever tried that…thanks for checking in!

  4. Elle

    Just a heads up – for people who are saying it’s too salty, make sure you’re using the right salt! Maybe I’m incorrect, but I’m assuming they mean kosher salt. In the past I have used table salt instead and ruined a recipe!

  5. Michelle

    I followed this recipe exactly as written (minus the salt) and at the end I added a bag of frozen riced cauliflower. My husband and teenage son (both of whom HATE cauliflower) each had 2 large servings before I disclosed to them that the “rice” was actually cauliflower! This meal will definately be put on my monthly rotation. Thanks for the great recipe!

    1. Dan

      We do that too! We’re always trying to get more vegetables in and this recipe works perfect for that. Thanks for letting me know!

  6. Phylli s

    My daughter told me about this recipe. Being of a “ certain age” I have to be careful of my sodium intake so I reduced the amount to salt and used low sodium soy sauce and I still loved it!! I also substituted brown rice which I love. This recipe is a keeper.

  7. Jacqueline

    Make this recipe regularly… it is fantastic. I do not like whole peppers and this option is great. I serve with brown rice and as salad wraps.
    Thank you.

  8. Millennial Blogger

    Yummy recipe! I did not use any tomato sauce nor pate but stuck with the Worcestershire and soy — it still was yummy!

  9. KK

    This was delicious! I didnt have worchestershire, but that was ok! Still tasted incredible! I was eating it by itself and i firgure i better throw it on some rice ; )

  10. Abbey

    I love this recipe, it’s so good. I don’t add the soy or worcestershire and substitute salsa for the tomato sauce. I will be making this again soon.

  11. Andrea

    After making this recipe at least a dozen times, I’ve finally copied it into my write-in recipe book (reserved for the really good ones). Our kids love this dish and request it often, and they, too, eat the peppers!

  12. Haley

    I didn’t follow the recipe exactly, but I did want to comment that it was a great recipe base for us. We are a plant based family so we subbed Impossible ground “meat” and due to it’s already salty nature I omitted the soy sauce and salt. Everything else we kept the same and we all enjoyed it, including three small kiddos. Thanks for sharing! This one will be repeated. :)

  13. Rebecca B

    I use ground turkey, usually more peppers than it calls for and homemade tomato sauce I freeze every fall. Always perfect and always a winner at our table!

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