When you need a simple, easy and healthy weeknight meal, stuffed peppers comes to my mind. Try this play on the traditional stuffed pepper with the versatile and comforting taste of Za’atar spice in this chickpea and rice mixture. The Za’atar spice is a middle eastern blend that includes thyme, oregano, sesame seeds & sumac and is lovely in aroma & also has a hint of citrusy flavor. Feel free to take it up a notch, heat-wise, with a few dashes of tabasco and extra crushed red pepper flakes when cooking up your rice mixture. Serve peppers with some Greek yogurt on top, along with freshly chopped cucumbers & parsley for a solid easy meal. Don’t forget to squeeze some lemon juice on top to add a little brightness and enjoy!
What you'll need
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 3 tablespoons Za’atar spice mix
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 15 ounce can tomato puree
- 1 15 ounce can chickpeas (rinsed and drained)
- 1 cup uncooked brown texmati rice
- 4 yellow (or red) peppers
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- 2 mini cucumbers
- 1 lemon
- ¼ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
- additional Za’atar spice mix for garnish & flavor
Prep + Cook
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and prepare rice according to package directions.
- In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook for about 5 minutes, or until tender, stirring occasionally.
- Add the za’atar spice mix, minced garlic, crushed red pepper, salt & black pepper. Continue cooking for another minute, then add in chickpeas along with tomato puree. Heat through completely and stir in cooked rice.
- Cut peppers in half lengthwise, remove and discard the seeds and membranes. Fill peppers with chickpea and rice mixture. Place peppers in a rectangular baking dish and pour water around the peppers.
- Bake, covered, for about 30 minutes or until peppers are still crisp yet tender.
- Serve with a dollop of Greek yogurt, chopped cucumber, lemon wedges and a pinch of parsley. Feel free to sprinkle a little more Za’atar spice for added flavor and garnish.
Makes 8 servings (1 pepper half per serving)
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Author: Jennifer Kuhar