Halloween stuffed peppers

Your kids can follow this recipe to help prepare a scary Halloween dinner.

Contributed by Michele Gilson, RD

Halloween stuffed peppers

Who says you can only carve pumpkins for Halloween night? Get your kids involved in helping to carve these bell pepper jack-o'-lanterns for a healthy warm meal before they set out for trick-or-treating!

This recipe was adapted from cookincanuck.com.

Servings: 6


  • 3 bell peppers, any color (orange looks most like a traditional jack-o’-lantern)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 large carrot, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 cups canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1 15-ounce can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 4 tablespoons minced flat-leaf parsley, divided


  1. Carve a jack-o-lantern face on one side of each pepper.  
  2. Carefully cut each pepper in half from top to bottom. Remove seeds and membranes.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet set over medium heat. Add the onions and carrots. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring occasionally until softened, about 5 minutes.
  5. Stir in the garlic, Italian seasoning, and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute.
  6. Add the crushed tomatoes, chickpeas, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil, then turn down to simmer for 10 minutes.
  7. Remove from heat and stir in the cooked quinoa and 3 tablespoons parsley.
  8. Place the pepper, cut side up, in a large baking dish. Divide the chickpea mixture evenly between the peppers. Pour 1/2 cup water into the bottom of the baking dish.
  9. Cover tightly with foil and bake in the preheated oven until the peppers are tender for about 30 minutes.
  10. Garnish with the remaining 1 tablespoon of parsley.
  11. Carefully put 2 bell pepper halves back together, so that the jack-o’-lantern is face up.
  12. Split a jack-o’-lantern stuffed pepper with a friend.

Nutrition information (per serving)

  • Serving size: 1/2 stuffed pepper
  • Calories: 200
  • Total fat: 5 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Sodium: 510 mg
  • Total carbohydrate: 34 g
  • Dietary fiber: 8 g
  • Total sugars: 11 g (0 g added sugars)
  • Protein: 8 g