Crock Pot Stuffed Pepper Casserole (GF, VG)
This dish is Gluten Free and Vegetarian/Vegan, made without meat, dairy, or gluten!
- 4 Bell Peppers, finely sliced into skinny strips
Veggie Filling Ingredients:
- 8 oz Can stewed tomatoes (one can)
- 4 Portobello mushrooms
- 6 Cloves garlic
- 1 Small Vidalia onion
- 1/4 c Olive oil
- 1 dash White wine
- 1/4 c Fresh basil, finely chopped
- 1 1/2 tsp. Paprika
- 1 1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
- 1 1/2 tsp. Parsley
- 1 1/2 tsp. Rosemary
- 1 1/2 tsp. Oregano
- 1 1/2 tsp. McCormick garlic pepper (grinder)
- 1 1/2 tsp. Pepper
- 1 1/2 tsp. Salt
- 2 1/2 c Arborio rice (risotto rice)
- 6 c Vegetable stock (or 1.5 48 oz packages)
- 2 1/2 tbsp. Olive oil
- 1/4 c Fresh Basil, finely chopped
- 1 Whole bay leaf
- 8 oz Lisanatti Foods Almondmilk Mozzarella (GF and Dairy Free) (one block/package)
- Start by spraying two 2.5-quart crock pots (or one 5 qt. crock pot) with Pam or non-stick spray to prevent sticking.
- Start by gathering your tools! Get one small/medium saucepan (for the vegetable stock) and two large sauté pans, coating the latter with 2-3 tbs. of olive oil (one for the risotto and one for the veggie filling).
- Start by washing your produce, the peppers, mushrooms, and basil, and chopping up the peppers into 3-4"-long skinny strips, and place about ¼ of the peppers into each crock pot (or ½ into one larger crock pot). Set aside the other ½ of the peppers for layering with the risotto later.
- Chop mushrooms, onions, basil, and garlic into fine pieces, keeping the mushrooms a little bigger if you’d like. Starting with the onions, basil, and garlic, place into the olive oil to simmer and reduce for 2-4 minutes until the garlic begins to be fragrant.
- Then add the mushrooms, stewed tomatoes (I pulsed them a few times in my chopper to get smaller pieces, but you could chop them manually too), and season with the spices above. Saute and reduce on medium heat for 10-15 minutes until most of the vegetables have become soft. Add in the splash of white wine (optional) about 5-7 minutes before you think they’re done to deglaze the pan and meld the flavors together better. Taste periodically, seasoning to taste as you go.
- Once the veggies are done, take off the heat until you need to stir them into the risotto mixture.
- While the veggies are sauteing, lightly toast the risotto rice in the other pan on medium heat for 2-3 minutes, until the rice starts to turn golden brown. Add the remaining basil and bay leaf now.
- In your small saucepan, heat up 6 cups of vegetable stock simply to keep it warm on medium-low heat for this application.
- Once your rice is browned, reduce the temperature to medium-low and start a timer for 20-25 minutes.
- Add 1- 1 ½ ladles of broth into the rice, stirring every few minutes to combine and prevent sticking. Repeat this process until you run out of broth, the timer goes off, and the rice is al dente (think the doneness of pasta!).
- If you need more liquid, boil some water and you can sub that in just as easily.
- Stir the veggie mixture from before into the risotto, combining and tasting again to make sure it doesn’t need more salt or pepper.
- Now it’s time to assemble! Pour ¼ of the rice mixture into both crock pots (or ½ into a large one), covering with the remaining sliced peppers and then topping off with the remaining ¼ of the rice mixture each (So, each crock pot should end up with half the rice mixture and half the peppers).
- Cook in the crock pot on LOW for about 3-4 hours, just until the layered peppers have become soft. Shred the entire block of cheese and stir ½ into one crock pot and half into another, serving immediately!
- This was made for a party, so if you only want about 7-10 servings of this, cut the recipe in half. However, this recipe works great for meal prep, it's super hearty and delicious and warms up well. It should keep in the fridge for about 5-7 days.
- If you leave it in the crock pot for too long, it may start to take on the consistency of oatmeal; it still tastes awesome, it’s just soaked up a lot more of the juices and congealed more than it needed to. No worries there 😊