These colorful stuffed peppers are a must-try for all! They're filled with savory sautéed vegetables like mushrooms and carrots, as well as protein-rich quinoa and black-eyed peas that'll keep you full. The cashew mozzarella is optional, but its is highly recommended. You won't believe how easily you can turn cashews into gooey, melty mozzarella. Combine everything together, roast it in the oven, and enjoy a meal that you'll definitely be coming back to.
Santa Fe Roasted Stuffed Peppers With Spicy Cashew Mozzarella [Vegan]
For the Peppers:
- 4 bell peppers, cored and seeded, tops removed and reserved
- 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
- 1 cup water and a pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for peppers
- 1 onion, diced
- 3/4 cup carrots, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 cups mushrooms, sliced
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 3/4 cup frozen corn
- 1 15-ounce can black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth, low sodium
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon sea salt, more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
For the Cashew Mozzarella:
- 1/4 cup raw cashews, soaked in water 2-4 hours
- 1 cup unsweetened almond milk, hot (be careful not to burn the milk)
- 2 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon tapioca starch
- 1 teaspoon nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
To Prepare the Peppers:
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Brush a little oil inside each pepper. Next, sprinkle them with salt and freshly ground pepper. Place cut-side down in a lined 9×13-inch baking dish. Roast until peppers are slightly tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
To Make the Stuffing:
- In a medium pot, cook the quinoa with 1 cup of water. (add a pinch of salt to the water) This usually takes about 15 minutes. Set aside
- Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and sauté until translucent, about 5-6 minutes. Add carrots and sauté until softened, about 8-10 minutes. Add garlic, cook 1-2 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook until softened, 4-5 minutes more
- Add the spices, and stir well to combine. Now, add the cooked quinoa, beans, and corn. Stir in the vegetable broth, tomato paste, salt, and pepper. Combine well. and taste for more salt or pepper. Cook for another 5-8 minutes, then remove from heat and set aside.
To Make the Cashew Mozzarella:
- Drain cashews and discard water. Place all ingredients into a blender. Blend until smooth, about 1-2 minutes.
- Pour mixture into a small pot and place over medium heat. Stir often, so it doesn’t stick or burn. Scrape the sides and bottom, as needed. The cheese will start to thicken up. Place heat on medium-low. When it becomes stretchy and thick, remove from heat. This whole process should take about 5 minutes.
- Divide stuffing mixture evenly among bell peppers, gently packing it down and making sure to fully fill each pepper. (If you have decided to choose the cheese option, spoon a dollop of cheese on top of each stuffed pepper)
- Now, place reserved tops on each pepper and arrange them upright in 9×13-inch lined baking dish. Bake at 400°F until heated through, about 15-20 minutes.
Top with fresh-cut cilantro or parsley. If you have stuffing left over, you can save it for lettuce wraps, a breakfast side or just eat it as is. It's delicious!
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