These taco stuffed peppers are easy to make and have all the great flavors of beef tacos plus a delicious poblano pepper. They are a great make-ahead meal perfect for a busy weeknight.
Why make taco stuffed peppers?
These peppers are a great way to enjoy all the delicious things you love about tacos AND adding additional flavor and substance. I used poblano peppers for this recipe and their earthy, complex flavor adds a lot to the chili-flavored beef. What about the crunchy taco shell, you ask? That’s actually in here too, in the form of a crumbled Dorito chips topping. Use any flavor you like, crumble the chips and sprinkle over top. It’s delicious!
For the peppers:
A note on the ingredients:
- I recommend 90 percent lean beef for this recipe. Beef with a higher fat content tends to be too greasy.
For the toppings:
Top these peppers with traditional taco toppings (tomato, lettuce, sour cream) and crumbled Doritos.
How to make it:
See full ingredients & instructions in the recipe card below!
Step 1. Pre-cook the pepper halves in boiling water for 10 min.
Step 2. Meanwhile, cook the beef with onion and spices.
Step 3. Transfer the pepper halves into a baking dish and fill with the beef.
Step 4. Top with shredded cheese and bake.
How to cut poblano peppers:
Unlike bell peppers, poblano peppers are generally not round but instead flattened. That means that you end up either with shallow, wide pepper halves or with narrow, deep ones, depending on which way you cut them. For the recipe here you want shallow, wide halves, so you want to cut the peppers parallel to their flat side. That way you get a wide, even distribution of meat, cheese and toppings across the pepper.
Is pre-cooking the peppers important?
Yes, very. I tested baking the raw peppers directly and found that, even with longer baking times, the pepper skins remained too tough. Pre-cooking the poblano peppers starts to soften their skins and leaves them soft and delicious after baking.
How to serve:
Top the peppers with diced tomato, lettuce, sour cream and crumbled Doritos.
How to store leftovers:
Transfer any leftover peppers into an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 2 days. Reheat in the oven or the microwave.
How to make it ahead:
You can make the peppers up to 1 day ahead and keep in the fridge. Prepare the peppers as instructed, fill them with the meat and the cheese, then let them cool to room temperature. Cover the baking pan the peppers are in and transfer to the fridge. Bake the following day as instructed.
How to freeze:
Let the fully filled but unbaked peppers cool to room temperature, then transfer to a freezer bag, seal and freeze. Thaw the peppers in the bag in the fridge overnight, then bake as instructed.
More delicious ground beef recipes:
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Full Printable Recipe
Taco Stuffed Peppers
- 2 poblano peppers
- 1 teaspoon olive oil, plus more to brush the baking pan
- ¼ cup minced white or yellow onion
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- ½ pound ground beef (90 percent lean)*
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon smoked hot paprika
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cumin
- ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (3 ounces)
- sour cream
- chopped romaine lettuce
- diced tomato
- Dorito chips, crumbled
- Heat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Slice the peppers in half lengthwise** and remove ribs and seeds.
- Transfer the peppers halves cut side up to a large pot and fill with water until submerged. Cover, then bring the water to a full boil. Once the water is boiling, set a timer for 10 minutes and boil the pepper halves for 10 minutes. Take the peppers out of the water and let dry. While the peppers are cooking, prep the baking pan and make the filling.
- Grab a baking pan large enough to fit the pepper halves and lightly brush it with olive oil.
- Heat the ½ teaspoon olive oil in a cast iron or non-stick pan.
- Add the onion and saute until starting to soften (about 5 minutes).
- Add the garlic and cook until fragrant (about 30 seconds).
- Add beef, chili powder, salt, onion powder, smoked paprika, cumin and garlic powder. Cook until the beef is no longer pink (~7 minutes), stirring around a few times.
- Set the pepper halves into the prepared baking pan, then transfer the meat into the pepper halves.
- Distribute the cheese on top and bake until the peppers are tender (25 to 30 minutes).
- Transfer to plates and top with sour cream, lettuce, tomato and crumbled Doritos.