These Italian-inspired Vegan Stuffed Peppers are loaded with hearty roasted vegetables. Bell peppers are roasted and stuffed with couscous, chickpeas, and fresh veggies. Colorful, flavorful, healthy, and ready in under an hour! It's vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free.
I’m in love with the colors of bell peppers. Green, yellow, orange, and red - they're so pretty and always make me feel like summer has officially arrived!
Bell peppers are super healthy too - low in calories, but rich in vitamin C and antioxidants.
The filling in these vegan stuffed peppers is just pure yummy… no meat or cheese here, it’s the fresh produce that shines.
The mushrooms add an earthy flavor and the zucchinis give a little bit of sweetness that pairs perfectly with the roasted red pepper. The veggies are all tossed in a tasty tomato passata - turning them into a simple ratatouille.
And the quinoa and chickpeas make this a really filling and satisfying main dish!
These vegan stuffed peppers are:
- Easy to make in less than an hour.
- Requires just 10 simple ingredients!
- 100% Vegetarian and Vegan Friendly
- Pretty enough to serve to guests!
How to Make Vegan Stuffed Peppers
To make the filling for your vegan stuffed peppers - we'll need to roast some veggies.
Add some whole garlic cloves, sliced zucchini, onion, and mushrooms to a big mixing bowl and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. You can experiment with other veggie combinations as well - see some ideas in the tips section below.
Roast the vegetables for 10-15 minutes until they are all tender and soft. You can also saute the vegetables on the stovetop as a slightly faster alternative, but roasting brings out a much more intense flavor.
Pick the garlic cloves out of the roasted veggies and squeeze them gently to remove the skins. Then stir that roasted garlic into a bit of tomato passata, to really amp up the flavor.
If you're not familiar with tomato passata, see the tips section below for more info and an alternative.
Add the tomato passata to the veggies and roast everything for a few more minutes to let the flavors combine. You'll end up with a veggie mixture that looks a lot like a traditional ratatouille!
While the veggies are cooking, you can also prep the bell peppers. Slice the tops and remove the seeds and membranes from the inside.
Stuff the bell peppers with the roasted veggie mixture, and bake for 15 minutes, until the skins on the peppers start to look a bit shriveled.
Serve your vegetarian stuffed peppers with a bit of a couscous for a simple vegan dinner!
Tips for Perfect Vegan Stuffed Peppers
Experiment with your favorite veggies.
You can use any combination of veggies you like in these stuffed bell peppers. I've made them with fresh corn, squash, eggplant, kale, and even broccolini. I love to cook with whatever veggies are in season!
What is tomato passata and what can I substitute?
You should be able to find tomato passata in large grocery stores these days, or in any Italian specialty store. It's sometimes labeled as simply "strained tomatoes". I typically use this brand of tomato passata.
If you cannot find passata in your store, the best substitution is a plain tomato puree like this. This is basically the cooked version of passata.
And if you can't find tomato puree, you're next best option is to use crushed tomatoes. The consistency will be a bit too thick, so it's best to run them through a food processor and then strain to remove the seeds.
Play with Different Colored Bell Peppers
I also love to play up this recipe with different colored bell peppers - this is especially fun if you're serving them for a party or making them with kids.
You can used a mix of green bell peppers, yellow bell peppers and red bell peppers - whatever colors you can find in the market.
Use your Favorite Grains
Couscous is one of my favorite ingredients - I just love that fluffy texture it gets! And it pairs so well with roasted or grilled veggies. In fact, grilled veggies and couscous are my go-to summer recipe.
But if couscous isn't your thing, this recipe works equally well with quinoa or rice instead. So feel free to try it out with your own favorite grains.
Extra Toppings for Stuffed Peppers
These vegetarian stuffed peppers are perfect as they are, but if you want to add a little something extra you can serve them with:
- A drizzle of balsamic vinegar.
- A sprinkling of additional fresh herbs like parsley, dill, or cilantro.
- A bit of parmesan or feta cheese for a vegetarian version. (This vegan feta cheese would work too!)
Vegan Stuffed Peppers
- 1 large zucchini chopped
- 1 cup mushrooms quartered
- 1 large onion quartered
- 3 cloves garlic unpeeled
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 ½ cups tomato passata or crushed tomatoes
- ½ cup chickpeas drained and rinsed
- ⅓ cup basil leaves roughly torn
- 4 medium sized red bell peppers
- 1 ½ cups couscous
- parchment paper
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (180 Celsius).
- Toss the garlic cloves, zucchini, onion, and mushroom in a large bowl with the olive oil. Season with salt and paper and place on a baking sheet, lined with parchment paper. Roast for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
- Remove the cloves of garlic and press gently to remove the cooked garlic from their skins. Add the garlic to the tomato passata and stir through.
- Pour the passata over the roasted vegetables and add the chickpeas. Toss to combine and return to the oven to bubble away for another 10 minutes.
- Carefully cut the tops off the bell peppers, and scoop out the seeds and membrane. Fill with the veggie mixture and torn basil leaves, and return to the oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until the skin on the bell peppers start to shrivel.
- Meanwhile, heat 2 cups of water to a boil. Add the couscous, season with salt and pepper, and stir. Remove from heat and cover for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork, and serve alongside the vegan stuffed peppers. Top with fresh basil leaves.