Smoked Stuffed Peppers are the perfect way to cook flavorful peppers with a tender and sweet crunch. Load up the middle with sausage and cheese, and let the grill add that perfect smokey flavor! Easy, flavorful, and a great appetizer or simple main dish.
Grilling peppers is one of our summertime favorites. If you grow your own peppers in the garden, this is a great way to use them up, and add in some extra protein while you're at it.
Mini peppers are always a hit, but this same cooking process and technique can be used with bell peppers, poblano peppers, and even jalapeno peppers as well.
The best part is that the stuffing mixture is really fast and simple to make, and easy to switch out as well. Some days we'll add more meat, others more onion. It all depends on what we like and are craving.
Another great vegetable recipe for the grill is Smoked Sweet Potatoes. Be sure to add it to your list of foods to try this summer.
Ingredients for Smoked Stuffed Peppers
Mini peppers - Mini peppers are easy to prep, colorful, and fast to cook. They also have a sweet flavor that pairs nicely with the stuffing mixture.
Sausage - You can use mild sausage, Italian sausage, or hot sausage so change it up and enjoy.
Rice - I like to use white rice but brown rice would work too.
Mozzarella cheese - This is our go-to shredded cheese for this recipe, but change it up. Cheddar cheese, pepper jack cheese, or even a Colby blend would be great.
Marinara sauce - This is what holds all the ingredients together in the pepper. (and adds great flavor)
Kosher salt and black pepper - These can be added to taste.
Instructions for making Stuffed Sweet Peppers with Smoked Flavor
Step One: Preheat smoker to 225.
Step Two: Mix together the sausage, rice, cheese, marinara, salt, and pepper.
Step Three: Divide the sausage mixture between the pepper halves.
Pack the mixture into the peppers tightly so that you can squeeze in as much as possible.
Step Four: Smoke the peppers for an hour or until the sausage filling reaches 160.
Use other meats - Ground chicken, ground turkey, and any type of pork would be great for this smoked stuffed peppers recipe. Ground beef is a good option, too.
Cream cheese - If you want to add a bit of creaminess, you can opt to use cream cheese (or even smoked cream cheese) in place of the marinara.
Use bell peppers or red peppers - Any type of pepper will actually work so have fun changing it up! Green peppers are not as sweet and will take longer to cook because they tend to be larger.
Jalapenos - Love some heat? Go ahead and make this using jalapeno peppers or poblanos.
Add tomato sauce - You can opt to use tomato sauce instead of marinara. You will just want to flavor it since it can be bland. Add some heat by using some red pepper flakes! Or try them with smoked tomato sauce.
Garlic - Chop a couple of garlic cloves and mix them into the filling. Use smoked garlic for extra flavor.
Can I make this pepper recipe in the oven?
Yes, you can cook stuffed peppers in the oven. I recommend actually cooking the sausage in a skillet first, so that way you know that it's done all the way. You can then add the cooked sausage to the rest of the filling and cook it in the oven at 350 degrees for about 60 minutes or so.
Just make sure that you're keeping an eye on the peppers, no matter the cooking method. The outside of the peppers may start to turn darker in coloring, but you don't want them to burn. Cooking them on the grill or in the oven is a cooking method that takes a bit longer but it's so that the peppers don't burn.
How do I keep the peppers from sticking to the grill grate?
No matter if you're using mini peppers or bell peppers, it's always a good idea to spray the grill grate or add a little bit of oil on top before adding.
Some people actually like to also toss the peppers in olive oil or coconut oil after cutting them in half, as this helps to "coat" them so that the bottoms won't stick while they're cooking.
When it comes to prep time, what is the best way to prep a pepper?
Start by washing off the peppers and then cutting off the stem on top. You can then halve all the peppers, and scoop out any seeds that are inside.
Once the inside of the pepper is hollow and cleaned out entirely, you can then start adding in the mixture a tablespoon at a time until they're full and ready to put on the pan or on the grill grate.
Smoked Stuffed Peppers
- Traeger Grill or other smoker
- 8 mini peppers
- 8 oz sausage
- 1 cup rice cooked
- ¼ cup mozzarella cheese
- ¼ cup marinara sauce
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Preheat smoker to 225.
- Mix together the sausage, rice, cheese, marinara, salt, and pepper.
- Divide the sausage mixture between the pepper halves.
- Smoke the peppers for an hour or until the sausage filling reaches 160.