- 8 medium red, yellow, or orange bell peppers (about 4 pounds total)
- 2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon dried Italian seasoning
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
- 1 1/2 cups cooked rice
- 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
- 1 cup shredded Italian blend cheese (4 ounces)
- Cooking spray
- Thinly sliced scallions, for garnish (optional)
- 9×13-inch baking dish
- Cutting board
- Large saucepan
- Wooden spoon or spatula
- Canning funnel (optional)
- Heat the oven and prepare the baking dish. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 375°F. Meanwhile, prepare the peppers and filling.
- Prepare the peppers. Use a small knife to cut a wide circle around each bell pepper stem (like when carving a jack-o’-lantern) to remove the tops. Season the inside of each pepper generously with salt and pepper. Place the peppers into 9×13-inch baking dish, wedging them together as needed to fit in one layer; set aside.
Cut the stems from the tops and discard. Dice the tops and set aside for the filling.
- Cook the filling.Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onion, season with salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8 minutes. Add the Italian seasoning and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more. Add the ground beef, diced pepper tops, and 1 teaspoon salt and cook on medium-high heat, breaking the meat up with a spatula as it cooks, until cooked through, about 6 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the rice and drained tomatoes. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.
- Stuff the peppers. Evenly divide the mixture among the peppers (use a canning funnel if you have one). Sprinkle the cheese over the peppers. Carefully pour 1 cup of water between the peppers into the baking dish.
- Cover and bake until tender. Spray one side of a large sheet with aluminum foil with cooking spray. Place it sprayed-side down over the peppers and cover the baking dish tightly. Bake until the peppers are softened but not mushy and the filling is heated through, about 1 hour. Sprinkle with scallions if desired before serving.
Make ahead: The peppers can be stuffed and refrigerated up to 1 day ahead. Add 10 minutes baking time.
Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.