V \ GF Lentil & Veggie Stuffed Peppers
So as I mentioned in my Instagram post, I'm not normally a fan of stuffed peppers. However, it turns out, I really enjoyed this version - as did my husband! Bonus!
I usually start out with a rough plan of what I want to make. Meaning, I had all of the base ingredients such as lentils, peppers, onions, garlic, some other veggies and of course, avocado! However, aside from that, I don't really know what I'm going to make or how it will turn out until I start working in the kitchen. That's just the way I roll. No recipes, or if I do use them, I alter them every time. Its how I express my creativity and I really enjoy the challenge of finding new ways to make healthy foods!
I started by prepping the lentils first by rinsing and boiling them and let them simmer covered for about 35 minutes or until they are relatively soft. Sometimes I will go as far as boiling them for 40-45 minutes. I like to add a dash of sea salt and approx 1 tsp of olive oil to the water.
While those were cooking I prepped the veggies. I started by cutting the peppers. Two I just chopped off the tops and they were quite large so made for a full serving. The last pepper I cut vertically down the center and cut into two, shallow pepper bowls.
For the veggies, I had several random veggies laying around that I wanted to use up that were more than a few days old so decided to dice the zucchini, chop the Brussels, mushrooms, onion and garlic. Once the lentils were cooked, I set them over the sink with the colander to rinse and drain before adding them to the veggies. While those were setting, I put the garlic and onion in a pan to saute with some olive oil and start to brown before adding the rest of the veggies and lentils.
Once I threw everything into the pan I really started debating how I make this consistency a bit creamy or richer than it was. I started adding some seasoning - my favorite Everything Bagel seasoning - from Trader Joes, along with pepper and sea salt. As I looked through my pantry I also realized I had some nutritional yeast - which I've really gotten back into using lately! I use to sprinkle this on EVERYTHING back when I started cooking vegan in 2012 but then I took a little hiatus until I started making noodles recently for my baby and thought this was the perfect add to her brown rice pasta for a healthy mac & cheese alternative!
So to make a long story short and wrap it up, getting to the most important part - the recipe! Without further ado, here you go!
- 1 1/2 cups brown lentils
- 4 cups water
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 zuchinni
- 1 cup brussel sprouts
- 1 red onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 3 large or 4 medium - small peppers
- 2 tsp Trader Joe's Everything Bagel Seasoning
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1/4 cup vegan shredded cheese
- Bring water to a boil and add sea salt & oil. Add lentils, let boil and bring to medium heat and let simmer covered for 35-40 minutes.
- While the lentils are cooking start prepping the veggies by chopping, and coring the peppers.
- Once the lentils are cooked, remove from heat and place into colander to rinse and drain.
- While the lentils are draining, go ahead and start a pan on the oven with the garlic, oil and onions. Bring to a golden light brown on the stove and add in the veggies. Let simmer for approx 10 minutes. Add in the nutritional yeast and lentils and let simmer another 5 minutes to ensure the juices are evenly distributed.
- Once the lentil and veggie mix is cooked go ahead and pour into pepper pockets - fill to the brim!
- Add a dash of vegan cheese to the top and place in the oven on a flat baking sheet to cook for 15 minutes - or until golden brown.