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Greek-Style Chiles Relleños Recipe

I go through phases with recipes. For a while I will be dedicated to the internet, spending the little time I have scouring new sites and checking the tried-and-true ones I love for new inspiration until I hit a wall and start to feel like I’ve seen everything the internet has to offer. (Which I realize is ridiculous because there are something like 5,000 food blogs alone, not to mention web magazines and websites and on and on and on.)

Anyway, when I get to that point I turn to my library of cookbooks and pick a few that I feel I have yet to actually cook from. This particular recipe was inspired by one such cookbook, Cat Cora’s KitchenThis is the Iron Chef’s first cookbook and it is a tribute to all aspects of her life, there is a section to commemorate her childhood in Jackson, Mississippi, a section dedicated to her Greek heritage, and a section honoring her life now in Northern California.

This recipe for stuffed bell peppers jumped out at me and even though I switched it up a little bit, I give her all the credit, they were delicious.

I used a rainbow of colored peppers and the sunset-hued varieties were tastier than the green. They are just that much sweeter and add a richer, more rounded flavor, plus they bake nicely and melt in your mouth, the green peppers stayed a little crunchy for my taste. The downside is they are much more expensive, so if you are on a budget, the green ones weren’t bad, just not as good as the red, orange or yellow.

This makes enough stuffing for 8 medium to large peppers, but I only stuffed 4 and froze the remaining stuffing for later on. If you are serving passionate eaters these peppers as a main course they are likely to eat more than one, so plan accordingly.

Peppers can be stuffed with room temperature filling, covered, and refrigerated one day in advance.


Sweet bell peppers stuffed with lightly scented cinnamon rice, beef, tomatoes, and mint. Dairy and gluten free!
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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 271kcal


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion small dice
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 stalk celery small dice
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 small cinnamon stick
  • 1 cup dry long-grain white rice
  • 8 medium bell peppers


  • Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a large frying pan until shimmering. Add onion, garlic, and celery and season with salt and black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and starting to brown. Add beef and cook until browned, breaking meat up with the back of a spoon. Season again with salt and pepper.
  • Add tomatoes with it’s juice, mint, oregano, and cinnamon and simmer for about 5 minutes. Taste and add more salt and pepper if necessary. Add rice and simmer just until the liquid has been absorbed. Remove cinnamon stick.
  • Heat oven to 350°F.
  • Slice off enough of the stem end of each pepper to expose the cavity; reserve the tops. Remove all the seeds then loosely fill each cavity with the meat filling, leaving enough room for the filling to expand. Replace the tops and place the peppers in a 9-x-13-inch baking dish and pour in enough water to reach 1/2-inch up the sides of the peppers.
  • Bake, basting every 15 minutes, until rice is tender and peppers have browned, about 1 hour 15 minutes.

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