It’s the first of the United States of MyPlates recipes! I am looking forward to sharing these recipes with you for the next year, there are 54 of them after all. I hope you will join me and stick with me on this journey! And my hope is for you to share these recipes on your family table. Learn more about the challenge here.
It only makes sense to start with Minnesota since that is where my family and I live. My kids are excited to cook their way through the United States and plan to trek our way across America using a map. They did wonder why we didn’t start at the beginning of the alphabet, but when you are a lifelong Land of 10,000 Lakes resident, it’s hard to think of a better state to begin with!
This recipe is seriously delicious. It’s easy to make, quick to prepare even on a weeknight and definitely family-friendly. It’s full of nutrient-rich vegetables, whole grains and lean protein.
Stuffed Red Bell Peppers
4 medium red bell peppers (the sweetest of all the peppers)
4 green onions, thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced (use a garlic press, no smell on your fingers!)
4 cups fresh baby spinach
2 cups tomato sauce
4 grilled chicken breast tenderloins (smaller than full chicken breasts, a total of 12 ounces), diced
2 cups cooked brown and wild rice (wild rice grows in the shallow lakes of Northern Minnesota)
8 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- In a pot of lightly salted water, cook red peppers until slightly soft, about 5 minutes. Drain and let dry.
- In a sauté pan over moderate heat, cook green onions, garlic, spinach and tomato sauce for 5 minutes. Add chicken and rice, stir until heated through. (Chicken should already pre-cooked).
- Fill red peppers half way with chicken and rice mixture, sprinkle a tablespoon of Parmesan cheese and then fill remaining section of bell pepper, top with another tablespoon of Parmesan cheese. Repeat for remaining bell peppers.
- Bake, by setting peppers upright in a regular muffin tin, for 15 minutes.
Adapted from Healthy Lunchtime Challenge Minnesota meal, by Riley Sorensen.
Serve with fresh strawberries and a glass of fat-free milk.
What the kids can do, with parent supervision and guidance:
- Wash peppers, onions, and spinach
- Snip the green onions with a scissor
- Measure out tomato sauce, spinach
- Carefully add ingredients into sauté pan
- Stir ingredients in pan and fill bell pepper
Easy way to chop up a green onion for any child that’s able to use a scissors, also great for herbs.
Why you can feel good about feeding this meal to your family?
It’s an excellent source of vitamin C which helps heal wounds and fight colds. And by using brown rice, along with the vegetables, this recipe provides about 8 grams of fiber (out of a goal of 10 per meal).
This meal is a MyPlate meal, providing whole grain brown rice, lean chicken breast, a cup of dairy, a serving of strawberries and of course those gorgeous red peppers filled with spinach.
MyCart Shopping Tip: Fill your cart like your plate and fill it half full of fruits and vegetables. That includes fresh, frozen, canned and dried.
Husband rating: 5/5 stars
Kids rating: 4/5 stars (depending on which one you ask!)
I will definitely be making this recipe again and again. A true family-pleaser.