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Rice Packed Peppers on a white ceramic plate

Dorie Greenspan’s Rice Packed Peppers

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If you’re a fan of stuffed peppers, Dorie Greenspan’s Rice Packed Peppers with garlic, spinach and cheese will hit the spot!

A vegetarian side dish or entree, once I coerced the picky hubby to take a bite, he changed his tune on stuffed peppers!

Rice Packed Peppers on a white plate

Dorie Greenspan’s Rice Packed Peppers

Our recipe this week for French Fridays with Dorie was a  lovely side dish called Creamy, Cheesy, Garlicky Rice with Spinach.  Doesn’t that sound delectable?  Dorie often suggests a Bonne Idée, a twist to the main recipe. And it’s frequently brilliant! I jumped at the chance to stuff some lovely bell peppers with this fabulous “almost” risotto. I picked out some jewel toned bell peppers knew they’d look as beautiful as they were destined to taste. Dorie’s rice packed peppers were phenomenal!

Rice Packed Peppers ready for the oven in a white baking dish

How to Make Stuffed Peppers Filling

I made Dorie Greenspan’s rice packed peppers for the first time while my dad was visiting back in 2010. I think the last time I ate stuffed peppers was my mom’s version with rice and ground beef, which he always adored.  So I knew he would appreciate these.  In fact he asked more than once if they were ready to eat, especially after I gave him a sample of the filling composed of Arborio rice, spinach, onion, garlic, Gruyère and cream.

The rice was made by bringing it and chicken broth to a boil, reducing the heat and allowing it to cook and simmer with the lid on.  The addition of cream gave the illusion of risotto without all the babysitting involved with the traditional technique. Then mixed with onions, garlic, spinach and cheese, the delicious filling was ready to be packed into vibrant fresh bell peppers and popped into the oven.

These pepper were marvelous, even the picky spouse agreed, but he needed to be coerced to take an initial bite. You know I don’t like stuffed peppers, he griped. But you love sausage and peppers, fajitas and other dishes with cooked peppers, was my logical response. Truthfully, I think he was most worried that these were the entree, not a side dish. Thank goodness I was convincing as he ate every single bite!

Rice Packed Peppers in a casserole dish

Tips for Making the Best Stuffed Peppers

These Rice Packed Peppers were made with rice, duh! But other grains can be used. Other cheeses can be used. Herbs can be added to the mix. The options are endless. Here are a few tips for making terrific stuffed peppers.

  • Select unblemished fresh bell peppers from the produce department of your favorite market. I like using a variety of colors for a beautiful presentation, red, yellow and orange. Back in the day, my mom would use green bell peppers, which aren’t as sweet, but are another option.
  • I like to slice a bit off the bottom of my peppers so they stand up straight in the casserole dish. Place them in the dish first, and observe which way the peppers tilt, and trim just enough without cutting an opening into the pepper.
  • I cut off the tops of my peppers and created a lid which can be baked on top of the filling. I like the way these look! You can also cut the peppers in half from top to bottom and place the pepper halves on their side. This will create double the servings for lighter appetites.
  • Place the peppers in a casserole dish where they fit tightly.  If your peppers are too wobbly in an ordinary baking dish, try a muffin tin or Bundt pan.
  • A little water in the dish and a cover of foil allows the peppers cook in a steamy environment.
  • An additional 15 minutes cooking time uncovered  lets any residual moisture evaporate. If desired, this would  be the perfect time to add an extra sprinkle of cheese to the top of the peppers.
  • As mentioned above, stuffed peppers are very easy to customize. Start with quinoa instead of rice. Add some diced bell pepper to the rice mixture. Add some minced fresh herbs or pesto! Shredded chicken or ground beef would please the meat lovers.
  • Fill your peppers with leftovers from your fridge.  Save extra taco filling, rice, veggies and make up your own version!


This recipe can be found in Around My French Table by Dorie Greenspan.

If you love peppers, here are some more delicious pepper centered recipes to try. These Taco Stuffed Peppers from Wine and Glue are easy enough for a busy weeknight. Kalyn’s Kitchen shared Ten Low-Carb Stuffed Peppers and how about this Feta Stuffed Red Bell Peppers appetizer from Give Recipe?

Rice Packed Peppers on a white ceramic plate

This 2011 “Rice Packed Peppers” post was updated with new photos and text.

Dorie Greenspan's Rice Packed Peppers

Dorie Greenspan's Rice Packed Peppers

Bell peppers baked with a marvelous filling of rice, cheese, spinach and more!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Yield 4


  • 3 1/4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 10 ounces spinach, long stems trimmed and chopped
  • 1/4 pound Gruyere cheese, shredded
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 medium bell peppers


In a medium saucepan, bring the broth to a boil. Stir in the rice and cover. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the broth is almost all absorbed, and the rice is almost cooked. Turn off the heat and allow the rice to finish cooking on the burner.

Preheat the oven to 400º.

Heat the butter in a large saute pan. Add the onion and cook for a couple of minutes, and then add the the garlic. Continue to cook until the onion is tender, and then stir in the spinach. Cook until the spinach wilts.

Add the rice to the spinach mixture, then the cheese and cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and stir until everything is well combined. If the rice looks too dry, add a bit more cream.

Prepare the peppers by cutting off the tops and removing the seeds and ribs. Place in a greased casserole dish that will fit them snugly. Divide the rice between the peppers, replace the tops, then pour 1/2 cup of water into the dish.

Cover loosely with foil and bake fro 45 minutes, then remove the foil and bake for another 15 minutes.


Use your favorite Swiss cheese. I used a mixture of Gruyere and Emmenthal

Nutrition Information:

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 0 Total Fat: 0g Saturated Fat: 0g Trans Fat: 0g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 0mg Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 0g Sugar: 0g Protein: 0g
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72 comments on “Dorie Greenspan’s Rice Packed Peppers”

  1. I havent made stuffed peppers in forever and I am so making these. They look amazing! I love how pretty and colorful they are!

  2. Those look good… I’ve actually never had one before… 🙁

  3. Well I can’t beleive we are really on the same page these days.. just posted shrimp stuffed peppers, yours are so beautifully done! Love the clear photos and I just can smell that fragrance coming from your kitchen everyone loves that smell here!

  4. What a wonderful idea…. The cheesy rice is perfect for peppers.
    Really beautiful and colorful pictures!!

  5. i love the idea of these stuffed peppers and the shortcut to the creamy risotto. And the cheesy … deliciousness!

  6. I love stuffed peppers!!! And what a great idea to use that cheesy rice as filling! Amazing dish… and now I am hungry!!! SIGH

  7. These are lovely lizzy! I made stuffed peppers the other day at work but they weren’t nearly as pretty as yours! Love that you put the tops back on them for presentation!

  8. These look perfect! I wish I saw this last week. I had a lot of peppers from a trip to a local farm that I would have used!

  9. Wonderful stuffed peppers, the rice filling sounds so delicious!

  10. Lizzy-I’m back tracking with the comments…a busy weekend, and I’m so behind with commenting!
    Your Dorie challenge rice dish with spinach in the gorgeous pepper cups are so amazing, and look so delicious!
    They deserve to be on Top 9…if they haven’t (which I would also have missed, as well)

  11. Oh these do look wonderful indeed…the rice sounds delightful and stuffed into these gorgeous peppers even better!

  12. YUM! Just got back from holiday and am catching up on your blog… I’ve already bookmarked about four recipes to try and I’ve only been on here about two minutes!!

  13. I love the colour contrast between the two sorts of peppers. I made the stuffed peppers, too. Such a great meal.

  14. Those are indeed gorgeous!!!! And, the filling sounds scrumptious. I need to spend more time with that cookbook!!! Hope you have a wonderful weekend 🙂 xoxo Kate

  15. I love that so many Doristas went with the stuffed pepper version! Yours look great.

  16. they look delicious!


  17. I love stuffed peppers I think I could eat these for even breakfast!

  18. I haven’t had stuffed peppers in a couple of years, thanks for the reminder. Yours sound very good, I’m pinning. 

  19. My husband is a fellow pepper hater, but I’ll have to try this recipe on him. Great time about that extra 15 minutes of cooking to avoid the soggy pepper status. Great recipe!

  20. Beautiful. And sounds delicious! I have that book – i need to get it out and go through it again. It’s been too long.

  21. These stuffed peppers sound amazing. The stuffing sounds very tasty

  22. I love stuffed bell peppers, these look delicious!

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