Air fryer stuffed peppers are a hearty & cozy dinner entrée. They are filled with Beyond Meat sausage, marinara, rice, onions, garlic, and Italian spices. Ready in just 30 minutes!
Serve with a side salad or green vegetable for a delicious & comforting dinner. Vegan & gluten-free.
When you crave something satiating that will stick to your ribs, stuffed peppers are a satisfying main course.
Bell peppers are stuffed with rice, browned Beyond Meat hot Italian sausage, onions, garlic, marinara, and Italian spices. Finally, they’re finished with melty non-dairy cheese.
It’s a cozy, home-cooked meal that is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser.
These vegan stuffed peppers are made with kitchen & pantry staples. And they come together in just thirty minutes, thanks to the air fryer.
I love using the air fryer, because I don’t have to wait for it to preheat. That means I can start cooking faster.
Plus, air fryers cook in about half the time as the oven. So dinner is on the table that much quicker.
(Here are more vegan air fryer recipes I know you’ll love!)
This recipe is a great way to use leftover marinara. If you’re right at the end of a jar of pasta sauce, it is perfect for finishing it off.
The recipe calls for just a scant ¼ cup of marinara. Not enough to cover a pizza or toss with a pot of pasta, but ideal for making sure nothing in the jar goes to waste.
Here are the ingredients you will need to make this recipe.
Oil: Avocado oil is my go-to. But you can use any neutral flavored cooking oil you like to brown the sausage & sauté veggies.
Veggie sausage: I like to use Beyond Meat hot Italian sausage for this recipe.
You can find it with other vegan meats in the refrigerated section at natural grocery stores. Or sometimes it’s kept in the frozen section.
I always keep a package of these gluten-free sausages in the freezer. When I need one, I just pull one from the package and quickly thaw it in the microwave.
But any plant-based sausage would work here – like the sweet Italian Beyond Meat sausage or Impossible sausage.
Field Roast apple sage, Herbivorous Butcher or Tofurky Italian sausage would all be good too. But keep in mind that these options are not gluten-free, if that matters to you.
Onion: I like yellow onion best for this dish, but any color will work. It can also be replaced with an equal amount of shallots.
Garlic: Fresh garlic is best, but it can be replaced with ¼ teaspoon garlic powder. (If using garlic powder, add it at the same time as the other seasonings.)
Cooked rice: Basmati brown rice is my default for this stuffed peppers recipe. But any cooked white or brown rice will be fine here.
I like to keep frozen rice on hand for convenient weeknight meals. (I buy it at Trader Joe’s.)
However, if you’re using frozen rice, I recommend heating it first before measuring one cup for the recipe. Store-bought frozen rice keeps its distinct grains. Once it’s warmed, more will fit into a measuring cup.
Marinara: Use any marinara or jarred spaghetti sauce you enjoy. To keep this recipe vegan, be sure it doesn’t include any dairy cheese or dairy milk.
Seasonings: Dried oregano, dried basil, granulated onion, salt, and pepper.
Non-dairy cheese: If you like, you can finish the stuffed pepper with a sprinkling of non-dairy cheese. Mozzarella-style cheese is best here.
Bell pepper: Look for a brightly colored pepper with firm skin. Red is my favorite here, but any color will work.
Step by step instructions
Here’s how to make this recipe at a glance. For complete ingredient amounts & instructions, keep scrolling to the recipe card below.
Cut the bell pepper straight down through the middle, right at the stem.
Use your fingers and/or a knife to remove the seeds and white membrane from inside the pepper. You can leave the stem on for looks or pop it off.
Brown a sliced Beyond Meat hot Italian sausage in a skillet with a little oil.
Once it’s brown, add onions and garlic to the skillet. Sauté a few minutes more, until the onion is translucent and fragrant.
Add cooked rice, marinara, dried oregano, dried basil, granulated onion, salt, and pepper.
Combine everything, turn off the heat, and set aside.
Air fry the peppers by themselves first, cut side down. Cook for six minutes at 360 degrees.
Then remove the peppers from the air fryer. Use a spoon to fill each half with the rice mixture. Make sure to get into all of the crevices. I recommend overfilling them a little, so that they’re heaping.
Return them to the air fryer. Cook for 6 minutes more.
During the last two minutes of cooking, top each pepper with shredded non-dairy cheese, if you like.
Make it your own
You can personalize these Beyond Meat stuffed peppers to suit your tastes.
- Instead of brown rice, use white rice
- Instead of Beyond Meat sausage, use Field Roast, Tofurky, Impossible sausage, or whatever veggie sausage you enjoy
- Vary the type of marinara
- Instead of dried oregano & dried basil, use ½ teaspoon of Italian seasoning
- For the cheese, use shredded vegan mozzarella, parmesan, or omit it altogether
What to serve with stuffed peppers
Air fryer stuffed peppers with Beyond Meat sausage & rice
- 1 teaspoon avocado oil or your preferred oil
- 1 Beyond Meat sausage sliced (or your preferred veggie sausage)
- ½ cup chopped yellow onion
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup cooked brown rice or white, if you prefer
- ¼ cup marinara
- ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
- ¼ teaspoon dried basil
- ¼ teaspoon granulated onion
- Pinch of salt
- Dash of pepper
- 2 Tablespoons shredded non-dairy cheese Optional
- 1 large red bell pepper
- Bring a large skillet to a medium heat with oil. Add the sausage slices to the skillet. As it browns, break up the sausage a little in the pan with your spatula.
- Once the sausage is brown, add onions and garlic to the skillet. Saute a few minutes, until fragrant.
- Add the cooked rice, marinara, dried oregano, dried basil, granulated onion, pinch of salt, and dash of pepper. Use the spatula to make sure everything is fully combined. Turn off the heat, and set the skillet aside.
- Cut the bell pepper in half, straight down the middle through the stem. Use your fingers to remove the seeds from inside the pepper halves, as well as any white membrane. You can leave the stem on for looks or pop it off with your fingers.
- Put the empty pepper halves face down into the air fryer. Air fry at 360 degrees for 6 minutes.
- Remove the pepper halves from the air fryer. Use a spoon to fill them with the rice mixture, making sure to fill all of the crevices. Fill them generously, so that there is a mound on top. Put the filled halves back into the air fryer, rice side up. Air fry at 360 degrees for 6 more minutes.
- During the last two minutes of cooking time, add a Tablespoon of shredded non-dairy cheese to each pepper, if you'd like. Continue until the cheese has melted.
- Remove the peppers from the air fryer and serve right away with a vegetable or salad.