Cheap College Recipes: Stuffed green peppers

Simply being a college student does not doom oneself to countless nights of Ramen and macaroni and cheese (although these do tend to be the favorites). Those who believe it is impossible to eat better meals while still maintaining some sense of a budget have either never tried, or gone to search in all the wrong places for a suitable alternative to cheap carbs.

The following is a recipe that is cheap and easy, made with products from the local grocery store:

Stuffed Green Peppers

Total prep time: 15-20 minutes

Total cook time: 30 minutes

You will need:

  • Four green peppers (recipe feeds four people, or one person for four meals).
  • One pound of ground beef (80/20 is preferred but 73/27 works too).
  • Small package of Mexican-style rice.
  • Third of an onion, chopped.
  • Bottle of sriracha sauce (or ketchup, for those less adventurous among us).
  • Two cups of Mexican-style cheese blend (more or less, depending on personal preference).
  • 1/2 cup of sweet yellow corn

I find it best to chop my onions and measure and prepare my ingredients prior to starting the cooking, as it makes things a lot less stressful and increases the overall efficiency of preparation.


  • Cut the top off of the peppers and remove any unwanted flesh.
  • Boil your peppers for three minutes, remove them and set aside to drain any extra water.
  • Cook your rice. Obviously, pre-prepared brands will take less time than handmade rice. Also preheat your oven to 350 Fahrenheit.
  • Heat a skillet with olive oil or butter and cook your onions until they’re soft and start to turn translucent. Once they reach that point, turn the heat way down to avoid overcooking or burning them.

Now you should start cooking your ground beef, which I like to flavor with garlic powder, salt, pepper and a packet of taco seasoning. Drain the oil when possible and leave the beef for later.

  • Once it is all cooked, mix your beef, corn, and onions with your rice in a medium sized bowl.
  • To add flavor and a very manageable heat to the recipe, add sriracha into the bowl and mix it around evenly with the rice/beef mixture.
  • Stuff your peppers. I spoon some of the filling into each pepper bottom, spread a layer of shredded cheese, sprinkle a few drops of sriracha onto the cheese ,and then repeat the process as needed until the peppers are filled or until I run out of filling. (I typically have filling left over and you may as well, unless you have four very sizable peppers).

Bake for around 30 minutes or until the cheese on top is golden brown and the pepper is heated through.

Now that the peppers are done, you may enjoy them at your leisure. I find that the heat of the sriracha can often ruin the flavor of your accompanying beverage, so I prefer milk or water as a companion to this dish.