These crock pot stuffed peppers are made with 5 simple ingredients and filled with delicious taco flavors. Easy to prep ahead (you can even freeze them), and cook in the slow cooker for a convenient and hands off dinner.
The wet heat of the slow cooker is the perfect environment to steam the bell pepper, while a mixture of ground turkey, rice, cheese and seasonings cook to perfection on the inside. These crock pot stuffed peppers are a new family favorite!
Reasons you'll ♡ these Crock Pot Stuffed Peppers
- they have only 5 ingredients, and can be prepped with under 15 minutes worth of effort
- you can make simple swaps to make them low carb or vegetarian
- they have delicious Tex Mex flavor and are perfect loaded up with your favorite taco toppings
Wondering exactly how to this recipe? Watch this 1-minute video for step by step instructions! You can find more recipe videos on my YouTube channel.
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- bell peppers- look for large bell peppers with a flat base (if possible- if not, you can gently trim it down so they sit flat).
- rice- I've used basmati, but you can swap for any rice- long grain white or brown works best. You will need to start with 2 cups of cooked rice, which is roughly ¾ cup uncooked basmati rice.
- ground turkey- look for a mixture of light and dark meat for the best flavor. Often this is labelled at the grocery store simply as 'ground turkey'. I tend to avoid lean or extra lean ground turkey, but you can use it if you'd like.
- cheese- mozzarella is fairly neutral in flavor and gets nice and creamy in the filling as it cooks. Swap for cheddar, monterey jack, or get fancy with jalapeno havarti
- taco seasoning- use store bought, or try my homemade taco seasoning!
Start with cooled rice
The filling for these stuffed peppers is super simple, but you do need to start with pre-cooked and cooled rice, so make sure you give yourself enough time for it to cool completely. If the rice is hot when you mix it up, the turkey can start to cook before you stuff the peppers, which could lead to tough filling.
If you are looking for a great rice recipe, check out my perfect, fluffy rice.
Poke holes in the peppers
While testing this recipe, I found that liquid would pool in the bottom of the peppers as the ground turkey cooked. To avoid soggy bell peppers, we poke a few holes in the bottoms using a toothpick. It works like a charm to help the liquid drain out of the peppers as the turkey cooks.
Press the mixture in firmly
This recipe filled 5-6 medium-large bell peppers for me, but since bell peppers can vary greatly in size, they may fill more or less for you. Spoon the mixture into the bell peppers, pressing it down firmly with a spoon. You want them to be packed nice and full!
Cook on low heat
When using the slow cooker, I like to use the low heat setting. When using the high heat setting, variations between slow cooker models can be more pronounced, and it can actually cook at too high of a temperature, causing meat to become tough and overcooked rather than soft and tender.
For slow cooker stuffed peppers, we cook on the lowest setting for 4-5 hours. You can check using an instant read thermometer that the turkey in the middle of the pepper has reached 165°F.
Like tacos, these stuffed peppers are great loaded up with your favorite Mexican-inspired toppings:
- fresh tomatoes
- pico de gallo
- sour cream
- cilantro or green onions
- tortilla strips
- avocado or guac
I have owned Crock Pot brand slow cookers for many years now and have been extremely happy.
- Instant Pot- Check out these Instant Pot ground turkey stuffed peppers.
- Low Carb- Omit the rice. I don't recommend replacing with cauliflower rice as it can get soft and soggy during cooking. You can add other toppings after the bell peppers finish cooking, like avocado, salsa, and sour cream. Since the rice bulks out the filling, the recipe will fill fewer bell peppers.
- Vegetarian- Swap the turkey for 2 cups of black beans. This recipe is delicious made with black beans! I found the cheese pretty important for flavor and have not tried this recipe with vegan cheese, but it may be an option.
Storage + meal prep
Crock pot stuffed peppers are a fantastic meal prep recipe and can be prepped ahead in multiple ways:
1. Crock pot freezer meal
A crock pot freezer meal is assembled ahead and frozen before cooking. This way, when it's time to cook, you simply dump the ingredients into the slow cooker and skip any measuring. This is a great recipe to prepare for someone who is expecting a baby.
Here’s how you can turn this recipe into a freezer meal:
- Assemble the stuffed peppers and arrange in a rimmed baking dish. Freeze for 2-3 hours, until frozen solid, then transfer to a gallon-sized freezer bag, reusable silicone bag, or large meal prep container.
- Squeeze out as much air as possible.
- Freeze for up to 3 months.
- Thaw completely, then cook as directed in the recipe card.
2. Cook ahead and reheat
Alternatively, you can cook the stuffed peppers through, cool, and store in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat through the week for easy lunches or dinners.
- In the microwave until steaming hot.
- In the oven (uncovered) at 350°F for 15 minutes, or until warmed through.
Find my favorite meal prep containers here!
More healthy crockpot freezer meals
- 7 Slow Cooker Chicken Recipes
- Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken Recipe
- Crockpot Chicken Fajitas
- 34 Crockpot Freezer Meals
- Slow Cooker Roasted Red Pepper Chili
- Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken Thighs
- 2 cups basmati or brown rice (cooked; roughly ¾ cups uncooked)
- 6 bell peppers
- 1 lb lean ground turkey
- 3 tablespoons taco seasoning
- 2 cups cheese (shredded; mozzarella or cheddar work)
- sour cream or greek yogurt
- fresh tomatoes or salsa
- avocado slices
- fresh green onions or cilantro
- tortilla chips
- Cook rice according to package directions; set aside to cool.
- Cut tops off bell peppers so that you have a 1.5-2 inch hole in the tops.
- Using a toothpick, poke 3-4 holes towards the bottom of the bell peppers.
- In a large bowl, stir together the cooled rice, ground turkey, taco seasoning and 1 ¼ cups of cheese.
- Spoon filling into the bell peppers. Press it right in using a spoon.
- Arrange filled bell peppers in a 6 quart slow cooker; sprinkle with remaining cheese.
- Cook on low for 4-5 hours, or until cooked through. You can check using an instant read thermometer that the filling has reached 165°F in the middle.
To assemble ahead and freeze:
- Follow steps 1-4 above.
- Arrange stuffed bell peppers on a baking sheet or in a baking dish with rims (so they don't fall over).
- Freeze 3 hours- overnight before transferring to a large freezer bag. Freeze for up to 1 month.
- To cook: thaw completely before cooking as directed above.
- Heat individual portions in the microwave until steaming hot.
- Heat multiple portions in the oven (uncovered) at 350°F for 15 minutes, or until warmed through.
- Instant Pot- Check out these Instant Pot ground turkey stuffed peppers.
- Low Carb- Omit the rice; since the rice bulks out the filling, the recipe will fill fewer bell peppers.
- Vegetarian- Swap the turkey for 2 cups of black beans; cheese is important for flavor and this recipe has not been tested with vegan cheese.
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