This hearty soup has all of the ingredients you love in classic stuffed peppers. Loaded with chopped vegetables, lean ground beef, and rice, this Stuffed Pepper Soup cooks together in just one pot and is warm, comforting, and full of flavor!
The classic recipe for stuffed peppers is delicious, nutritious, and unique. It’s also a lot of work! That’s why I love to make this homemade Stuffed Pepper Soup instead.
All you have to do is brown some lean ground beef and saute a few vegetables, then throw everything in a soup pot (or a slow cooker or Instant Pot) and forget about it for under 30 minutes. When it’s done, you end up with a cozy, rich, and flavorful weeknight dinner.
The combination of healthy vegetables, savory lean ground beef, fire-roasted tomatoes, broth, and white rice is almost as hearty as chili, but still light like vegetable soup. Go ahead and finish each bowl with all of the toppings! I like to use freshly chopped cilantro, but you could switch it up and use parsley, a scoop of Mexican crema, or a sprinkle of crumbled Cotija cheese.
Ingredients in Stuffed Pepper Soup
- Bell peppers – A variety of red and green bell peppers will give the soup a pop of color.
- Onion and garlic
- Ground beef – 90% lean ground beef will give you tons of flavor without the grease.
- Seasonings – You need chili powder, kosher salt, cumin, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and dried oregano.
- Tomatoes – This soup has a tomatoey base, so you’ll need both canned fire-roasted diced tomatoes and tomato sauce.
- Broth – Use either beef or chicken broth, or vegetable broth if that’s all you have.
- White rice – Long grain white rice will make each bite of this soup tender and comforting. Feel free to use brown rice instead (just know that it will take longer to cook).
How to make stuffed pepper soup
- Saute the veggies: Cook the onion and bell peppers in a large pot over medium-high heat until they’re soft and translucent. Then add the garlic.
- Brown the beef: Add ground beef to the same pot along with the seasonings. Use a wooden spoon to break up the meat and cook until it’s browned.
- Bring it to a boil: Add in the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, broth, and uncooked rice. Then give the soup a stir and bring it up to a boil. Once it boils, reduce the heat to low, cover with a lid, and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Serve: Fill individual bowls with some soup and serve with chopped cilantro on top and fresh bread on the side.
Tips and tricks
- Is the soup too thick? Feel free to thin it out at the end with more broth or water. You could also use only half of the rice to give it a thinner consistency.
- Slow cooker instructions: Saute the onions and beef in a frying pan on the stove first, then add them into your crockpot. Mix everything except for the rice in the pot and cook on Low for 6 hours. You’ll need to cook the rice separately and then stir it into the soup right before it’s done.
- Instant Pot instructions: Saute the onions, peppers, garlic, and beef in the Instant Pot until the veggies are soft and the meat is browned. Turn off Saute mode and add in the rest of the ingredients (except the rice). Secure the lid and cook on high pressure for 15 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally when the soup is done cooking. Cook the rice on the stovetop, then add a scoop into each bowl and pour the soup over top.
Substitutions and Variations
Even though this recipe uses easy ingredients, it would still be great with a few adjustments:
- Instead of ground beef, use ground sausage, chorizo, pork, chicken, or turkey.
- Make this recipe without rice or replace it with quinoa or barley instead.
- Want to make it vegetarian or vegan? Use vegetable broth and replace the beef with a plant-based alternative (or omit it entirely).
- Give the soup a kick by sauteing diced jalapenos with the bell peppers or by adding a pinch of red pepper flakes.
Storing and reheating
To store, place the soup in airtight containers and store in the fridge for up to 4 days.
To freeze, place the soup in a freezer-safe sealed container or bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Let it thaw in the fridge overnight or reheat right from frozen.
To reheat, place the leftovers in the microwave and heat for a few minutes. Alternatively, warm them up in a small pot on the stove.