Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers are made with all the delicious flavors of the classic recipe–just in a fraction of the time!
I took my Papa’s recipe for Stuffed Peppers and adapted it for the Instant Pot.
This recipe for Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers has all the classic flavors of the original recipe–from the tender peppers to the flavorful rice filling, to the tangy tomato sauce. Plus there is no need to par-boil the peppers before stuffing–they will soften up perfectly as they cook in the Instant Pot.
This recipe is simple, classic, and comforting. It is easy enough to make for a weeknight dinner, but also makes a perfect Sunday Supper enjoyed with family and friends.
How To Make Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers
I love using my Instant Pot to prepare these stuffed peppers because not only can I quickly prepare Instant Pot rice to use for the filling, the moist heat cooks the peppers to perfection, while not drying out the filling.
Step One: Prepare Rice
The first step is to prepare the rice. You can use leftover rice or prepare white or brown rice. I typically prepare Instant Pot Brown Rice for this recipe.
Pro Tip: I always recommend making extra rice and using the leftovers for another dinner or to freeze and pull out for a future meal.
Step Two: Prepare Stuffed Pepper Filling
Once the rice is cooled slightly, you can prepare the filling. If you want to cool the rice down quickly, spread out the rice onto a sheet pan and pop in the freezer for 5-10 minutes.
I find it is best to use your hands to mix together the rice, meat, seasonings, and egg, but you can certainly use a spoon.
It is important to note the egg is added to help bind the meat and rice together with the sauce, but you can leave it out with no major impact–which is perfect for anyone with an egg allergy.
Step Three: Prepare the Peppers
A 6 quart Instant Pot will fit 4 large stuffed peppers on the trivet. An 8 quart Instant Pot, can fit up to 5 peppers. This recipe will make 4 large stuffed peppers or 5 medium stuffed peppers.
When selecting peppers to use for Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers, you can use any color you like. However, you do want to look for peppers that are uniform in size and have a flatter bottom–so avoid selecting peppers that are long and skinny. You want your peppers to stay upright when placed on the trivet in the Instant Pot.
Remove the tops of the peppers and then scoop out the seeds and ribs, leaving the pepper intact. Divide the stuffing evenly between the peppers.
Step Four: Pressure Cook Peppers
Place the trivet inside the Instant Pot. Pour in cold water and place the peppers upright on the trivet. Spoon the remaining tomato sauce on top of each pepper.
For this recipe, I find that cooking on High Pressure for 15 minutes, with a natural pressure release is the perfect amount of time to cook these peppers evenly. To be sure your peppers are cooked fully, place an instant thermometer inside the center of pepper and be sure the filling has reached 165 degrees.
To serve your peppers, they are great as is, or with a side of mashed potatoes—talk about carbs on carbs! But that is how I grew up eating stuffed peppers and is something I still crave to this day!
More Instant Pot Beef Recipes
- Instant Pot Hamburger Helper
- Instant Pot Beef Stroganoff
- Instant Pot Beef and Barley Soup
- Instant Pot Mongolian Beef
- Instant Pot Corned Beef and Cabbage
Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers
- 4 large or 5 medium peppers
- 1 1/2 cups cooked rice
- 1 pound ground meat beef, turkey, or chicken
- 14 ounces tomato sauce divided
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
To Prepare Rice
- Rinse and drain 1 cup dry rice. Add the rice and 1 cup of cold water to the Instant Pot. Cook on HIGH pressure for 3 minutes for white rice, 22 minutes for brown rice. Let pressure release naturally. Remove the rice from the inner pot and rinse and return the inner pot to the pressure cooker.
For the Stuffed Peppers
- Once the rice has cooled slightly, measure out 1 1/2 cup cooked rice into a large mixing bowl. Add in the ground meat, seasonings, Worcestershire Sauce, and 1 cup of the tomato sauce. Mix well to combine.
- Place a trivet inside the Instant Pot and then pour in 1 and 1/2 cups cold water.
- Cut off the tops of each pepper and remove seeds and core. Divide the rice mixture evenly between the peppers.
- Place the peppers on the rack and then top each pepper with 1-2 tablespoons of the remaining tomato sauce.
- Place lid on pressure cooker and be sure vent knob is pointed to sealed. Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes, by selecting manual or pressure cook and using the +/- buttons to adjust the time.
- Once cook time has elapsed let pressure release naturally, or for at least 10 minutes. Test the internal temperature to be sure that 165 degrees has been reached. If not, cook for an additional 3-5 minutes.
- It is best to use peppers that are the same size and fairly flat on the bottom. Any color pepper works for this recipe.
- I recommend using low sodium tomato sauce and Worcestershire sauce to control the sodium in this recipe.
- Leftover Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days or can be frozen for up to 3 months.
- Cook as much rice as desired and save leftover rice for another recipe. I find that preparing at least 2 cups of dried rice at any time is best when using an 8 quart pressure cooker.
- For High Altitude Cooking check out Instant Pot Altitude Adjustments.