Stuffed peppers are like sandwiches in that the filling possibilities are virtually endless. It is important only to make sure the filling is always added cold and that it is not something which is going to overcook and spoil while the peppers themselves are cooking. A spicy stewed meat combination is ideal for this purpose and the turkey in this recipe could easily be replaced with beef, pork or even lamb. The spice and vegetable additions can equally be varied to suit the type of meat used and individual tastes.

Ground Turkey Stuffed Peppers and Beans
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Spicy ground turkey stuffed bell peppers with garlic and chili kidney beans

The quantity of spiced turkey prepared in this recipe would make four to six stuffed peppers. In this instance, only one stuffed pepper was prepared and the leftover turkey was cooled and refrigerated for later use.

Ingredients (Serves 1 with Leftover Spiced Turkey)

Turkey and Spice
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Ground turkey and fajiats spice

  • 1 pound ground (minced) turkey
  • 1 ounce pack smoky bbq fajitas spice (or similar) - roughly a tablespoon
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil plus extra for greasing roasting tray
  • 14 ounce can of chopped tomatoes in tomato juice
  • 8 ounce can sweetcorn
  • 1 large, medium strength green chili
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped cilantro (coriander leaf) for turkey, 1 teaspoon for beans, plus extra to garnish
  • 1 large green bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 8 ounce can red kidney beans
  • 1 small red chili
  • Salt and black pepper


Sauteing Turkey
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Turkey and fajitas spice are added to warmed oil

Spoon the vegetable oil in to a large pot and put the pot on to a medium heat. Add the ground turkey and fajitas spice. Break the turkey up with a wooden spoon and stir for two to three minutes or until all the turkey is separated and browned and the spice is evenly dispersed.

Tomatoes, Corn and Chili added to Turkey
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Tomatoes, corn and chili are added to browned turkey meat

Pour the canned tomatoes in to the pot. Slice the green chili in to thin discs and add to the pot along with the drained sweetcorn. Stir well and turn the heat up under the pot until the liquid just begins to simmer.

Simmering Turkey
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Spicy turkey stew is brought to a simmer

When the tomato juice is simmering, reduce the heat to achieve as gentle as simmer as possible for half an hour or until all the liquid has evaporated, stirring frequently and well with a wooden spoon.

Cilantro added to Spiced Turkey
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Cilantro is added to spiced turkey

Add the tablespoon of cilantro to the cooked turkey and stir it through. Turn off the heat, cover the pot and leave the combination to cool completely.

Halved Bell Pepper
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Halved bell pepper

When the spiced turkey is cool, start your oven heating to 350F/180C/Gas Mark 4.

Cut the green bell pepper in half, down through the center.

Seeded Pepper
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Seeded bell pepper halves

Great care is required when cutting out the seeds and membrane from the pepper halves as it's important not to pierce the outer skin. The remaining stalk can be cut away at this stage if you wish but it does help contain the stuffing and makes for slightly more attractive presentation. It should however be cut away after service and not actually eaten.

Stuffed Pepper Halves
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Stuffed pepper halves are ready for the oven

A teaspoon is best used to spoon the turkey in to the pepper shells to fill. They should then be placed on a lightly oiled baking sheet and placed in to the heated oven for thirty minutes.

Sauteing Garlic
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Garlic is briefly sauteed in hot oil

A few minutes before the stuffed peppers are due to come out of the oven, pour the olive oil in to a non-stick frying pan and put it on to a low to medium heat. Peel the garlic clove and moderately finely dice before briefly sauteing in the warmed oil. Be careful not to burn the garlic or it will turn bitter.

Beans and Chili added to Garlic
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Kidney beans and chili are added to softened garlic

Pour the kidney beans in to a colander and wash under running cold water. Add them to the frying pan along with the seeded and finely chopped red chili and some salt and pepper.

Cilantro added to Beans
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Chopped cilantro is added to fried beans

Saute the beans for two or three minutes before stirring in the teaspoon of chopped cilantro and turning off the heat.

Plated Stuffed Peppers
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Turkey stuffed peppers are lifted to serving plate

A large spatula should be used to lift the stuffed pepper halves to either side of your serving plate.

Plated Bean Salad
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Fried beans are plated between stuffed pepper halves

Spoon the beans between the two pepper halves and garnish with the last of the cilantro.

Eating Stuffed Peppers
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Enjoying turkey stuffed bell peppers with spicy fried beans

Leftovers Recipe Idea - Spicy Turkey with Fried Egg

Spicy Turkey with Fried Egg
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Reheated spiced turkey with fried egg

This is just one idea for serving the leftover spiced turkey mix and it makes for a quick to prepare, satisfying lunch the following day. Start by adding the required amount of turkey to a pot. Put the pot on to a gentle heat to slowly reheat the meat, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon. You must ensure the turkey becomes once again piping hot.

Egg in Glass
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Egg is broken in to a small glass and seasoned

While the turkey is reheating, break a large egg in to a small glass, cup or bowl and season with salt and pepper.

Frying Egg
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Egg is carefully poured in to hot frying pan

Rub a small, non-stick frying pan with some vegetable or sunflower oil on a scrunched up piece of kitchen paper. Bring the pan up to a medium to high heat before very carefully pouring in the egg. When you can see the egg is going to hold its shape, reduce the heat and cook for two or three minutes until the white is completely set all the way around the yolk.

Egg on Spiced Turkey
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Fried egg is lifted on to reheated spiced turkey

Spoon the reheated turkey in to a deep plate and lift the egg on top with a spatula. Scatter with some freshly chopped cilantro.

Eating Turkey and Egg
Credit: Gordon Hamilton

Enjoying reheated spiced turkey and fried egg