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Stuff Your Veggies: 10 Recipes to Turn Veggies Into a Complete Meal

Linda explores food facts, folklore, and fabulous recipes one ingredient at a time.

This butternut squash recipe is just one of many included.

This butternut squash recipe is just one of many included.

Creative News Ways to Prepare Veggies

Do you remember stuffed green bell peppers? I grew up in the 1950s, and it seemed that they were part of every home cook's repertoire. What an innovative way to get your family to eat more vegetables, right?

Except that . . .

  1. The peppers were green—the nasty bitter kind.
  2. The stuffing was raw beef, so the peppers became a soggy sponge of grease.
  3. By the time the beef was fully cooked, the soggy peppers had also collapsed and turned from bright green to a weary shade of Army camos or Shrek the Ogre.
There are better ways to prepare vegetables!

There are better ways to prepare vegetables!

There's a Better Way!

Thankfully, we've come a long way, baby. Stuffed vegetables no longer have to be squishy, greasy, and devoid of color. Let's explore all the wonderful ways we can stuff our veggies and keep the color, texture, and taste!

(Each of the stuffed vegetables presented in this article can be a complete meal; just add a tossed salad.)

In This Article

  • Acorn squash stuffed with turkey
  • Avocado stuffed with mango and shrimp
  • Bell pepper with chicken and rice
  • Butternut squash stuffed with quinoa (V)
  • Eggplant stuffed with ground meat, Kalamata olives, and feta
  • Onions stuffed with meatballs and wrapped in bacon
  • Portobello mushrooms stuffed with crab cake
  • Tomato with ground beef and Italian-flavor rice
  • Tomato with tuna salad
  • Zucchini with black beans and enchilada sauce (V)

(V) = Vegetarian

Acorn Squash Stuffed With Turkey

This recipe for stuffed acorn squash from InnocentDelight combines all of the flavors of Autumn in one wonderful dish. Buttery acorn squash is filled with the sweet and savory tastes of ground turkey, onions, apples, and dried cranberries.

Avocado Stuffed With Mango Shrimp

KevinIsCooking is a grillmaster who admittedly is "passionate about making delicious meals that are sometimes health conscious and sometimes indulgent—because life’s too short to be bland!" Two of these avocado halves stuffed with sweet mango, crunchy veggies, and briny shrimp would make a satisfying light lunch.

Bell Peppers (Worth Having) With Chicken and Rice

These bell peppers (notice that they aren't green) were created by Michelle at DishesAndDustBunnies. Stuffed with cooked chicken and rice and covered with melted mozzarella cheese, they are baked until the pepper cups are just crisp-tender, not steamed to oblivion. Now, these stuffed bell peppers are worth making!

Butternut Squash Stuffed With Quinoa

This vegetarian dish from WellPlated is almost too pretty to eat. It packs a double punch of protein with the use of both quinoa and chickpeas.

Eggplant Stuffed with Ground Meat, Kalamata Olives, and Feta

This eggplant stuffed with ground meat (your choice of beef, chicken, lamb, or turkey), Kalamata olives, and feta cheese is reminiscent of all of the flavors you love in Greek salads and kebabs. Tiffany of LivingSweetMoments is the recipe developer and photographer for this wonderful dish.

Onion Bomb Stuffed With Meatloaf and Wrapped in Bacon!

I selected this recipe for my friend in Olympia (you know who you are!). I knew that he would grimace at the thought of avocado, gag when confronted with eggplant, and laugh out loud at the concept of zucchini stuffed with black beans.

Here is a recipe for all of the avowed meat-eaters; imagine, if you can, meatloaf packed inside of an onion, and then the entire thing is wrapped with bacon and baked until the meat is done and the bacon is crisp. They're called "onion bombs," but they won't bomb at your next barbecue. I guarantee that they will be the star of the show.

Portobello Mushroom Stuffed With Crab Cake

TasteOfHome is a great website for finding a vast variety of recipes and menus for every occasion. Portobello mushrooms are those large mushroom caps that are rich and meaty—one definitely makes a meal, especially when enriched with sweet crab meat and cream cheese.


Tomato Stuffed With Ground Beef and Italian-Flavor Rice

These roasted tomatoes from ComfortableFood are hearty and satisfying, filled with ground beef, cheese, rice, and the Italian flavors of basil and garlic.

Tomato Stuffed With Tuna Salad

The kitchen of KraftRecipes produces easy-to-follow recipes that are fast, nutritious, and made with familiar ingredients most of us keep in our pantries. These tuna-salad stuffed tomatoes would make a great lunch or light dinner on a hot summer day.

Zucchini Stuffed With Black Beans

Black beans, cumin, and enchilada sauce fill these gluten-free zucchini boats, giving you all of the wonderful flavors of enchiladas without the tortilla wrap. I like to stir in chopped fresh cilantro and top these with sour cream and grated cheese. Omit the sour cream and use soy-based cheese, and these can go vegan. Thank you, BBritnellfor this colorful recipe that can be ready in less than an hour.

© 2018 Linda Lum