Starts & Snacks

Italian Sausage Stuffed Mini-Peppers

By: Ginny Mahar
Italian-Sausage-Stuffed-Mini-Peppers

Dietary Compliance: Gluten-free, Dairy-optional, Egg-optional, Grain-free, Almost-Paleo, Paleo

I have this cousin-in-law, Nadia, a great cook from a family of great cooks. Her dad is Italian, her mom is Ukrainian, and she grew up in NYC, cooking and eating great food. One afternoon, Nadia offered to teach me to make her Italian Sausage and Peppers. Even though I try to avoid pasta and cheese, I knew there was only one right answer to this offer: yes. This was an occasion worthy of the exposure to what I sometimes refer to as ‘glutendairy’.

Learning to make Nadia’s sausage and peppers was one of my fave cheats of all time. The memory of the sauce and the sweetness of the caramelized everything haunted me with cravings, and drove me to solve this recipe in a more compliant, yet still scrumptious, way. The result? These Sausage Stuffed Mini-Peppers, complete with all the caramelized, savory sweetness of the real thing.

Note: You can avoid the funky processed ingredients found in the factory-made stuff by using my recipe for homemade Sweet Italian Sausage.

Here’s some info about the thyroid-friendly nutrients in this dish:

Italian-Sausage-Stuffed-Mini-Peppers
5 from 4 votes

Italian Sausage Stuffed Mini-Peppers

These appetizers have all the savory, caramelized, sweetness of Italian Sausage & Peppers, packed into a bite-sized package. 

Dietary Compliance: Gluten-free, Dairy-optional, Egg-optional, Grain-free, Almost-Paleo, Paleo.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 14 peppers

Ingredients

  • 1 dry pint mini sweet peppers
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 lb sweet Italian sausage
  • 1 cup finely chopped shallot
  • 1 medium clove garlicminced
  • 1/4 tsp chili flakes
  • 1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp fresh chopped parsleypacked
  • 1 large egglightly beaten (optional)
  • 1 tbsp roughly chopped parsleyfor garnish
  • 2 tsp grated Pecorino Romano cheesefor garnish (optional)
  • fine sea salt
  • pinch coconut sugar(optional)
  • freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Wash and dry mini-peppers, leaving stems intact. In a medium skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add peppers and toss to coat.

  2. Let peppers sizzle until skins have blistered and browned in spots, turning occasionally with tongs, 10 - 15 minutes or until just beginning to soften. Remove from pan and set aside to cool. Alternately, place mini-peppers under broiler, flipping once, until spotted with brown blisters on both sides.

  3. To make the filling, add the sweet Italian sausage to same skillet, over medium heat. Cook, breaking into small bits, until no longer pink. Remove sausage with a slotted spoon, drain and set aside.

  4. To the drippings in the skillet, add the chopped shallot. (There should be 1 - 2 tbsp. drippings. In case of extra, discard.) Increase heat to medium-high. Season with 1/4 tsp. sea salt and a pinch of coconut sugar (optional, but it speeds the caramelization along). Saute until well-browned, adding a tablespoon or two of water (or white wine) as needed, scraping the brown bits from the bottom of the pan to prevent scorching.

  5. Once the shallot is well-browned (this takes about 15 minutes), stir in minced garlic, chili flakes, and balsamic vinegar.

  6. Preheat oven to 425F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment and set aside.

  7. In a medium mixing bowl combine caramelized shallot mixture with cooked sausage. Add parsley, and season to taste with salt and pepper. It should be on the salty side. Stir in egg (this helps bind the filling but can be omitted).

  8. Use a small paring knife to carefully cut a slit in each pepper from stem to tip (See Note 1). To fill, squeeze at stem and tail end to pop them open like an old-fashioned coin purse. Use a small spoon to stuff peppers generously with filling. You should have just enough to divide among the peppers, depending on size. (See Note 2).

  9. Place stuffed peppers on parchment-lined baking sheet and place in oven 10-15 minutes or until tops are nicely browned and peppers feel tender. Garnish with chopped parsley and grated Pecorino Romano (optional). Serve warm and enjoy!

Recipe Notes

1 - Don't worry about removing the small seeds from inside the peppers – you'll barely notice them and it's not worth the trouble. Also, the stems make a perfect little handle and pop off easily as you bite the pepper away.

2 - Peppers can be prepared through to this step, and refrigerated for up to 4 hours before baking. Let them come to room temperature before placing in oven and following baking instructions above.

Nutritional Info Print
Nutrition Facts
Italian Sausage Stuffed Mini-Peppers
Amount Per Serving
Calories 71 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Fat 6g9%
Saturated Fat 2g10%
Cholesterol 25mg8%
Sodium 126mg5%
Potassium 45mg1%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 75IU2%
Vitamin C 1.2mg1%
Calcium 6mg1%
Iron 0.3mg2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Ginny-Mahar-Co-Founder-Thyroid-Refresh

About the Author

Thyroid Refresh Co-founder Ginny Mahar is the mom and recipe blogger formerly known as Hypothyroid Chef. After struggling with the residual symptoms of Hashimoto’s for over four years, she embarked on her own process of adopting a thyroid-specific diet and lifestyle. Within one year, she restored her vitality and lowered her thyroid antibodies by half. Ginny is a passionate advocate of supporting others on their journeys toward better health. She is a Cordon Bleu trained chef, cooking instructor, writer, and entrepreneur.