how to make stuffed cubanelle peppers recipe-1

How to Make Italian Stuffed Cubanelle Peppers – an easy recipe

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Ciao friends! Here’s a wonderful family recipe for how to make Italian Stuffed Cubanelle Peppers. This recipe is not only delicious but very easy to make. I’ve included a video down below that steps you through the preparation and baking process.

Italian Stuffed Cubanelle Peppers

You may know this recipe by other names such as stuffed Italian green peppers, stuffed Italian cubanelle peppers, or even Italian frying peppers. No matter what you call it, this recipe is one of the best ways to make cubanelle peppers.

Italian stuffed Cubanelle peppers recipe

I first learned how to make this stuffed cubanelle peppers recipe straight from my Sicilian mother-in-law’s kitchen. It was in 2009 when we were visiting her in Ohio. I remember seeing these long green peppers which she was going to use for making Sicilian stuffed peppers. I also remember thinking how I didn’t even like stuffed peppers. How would I ever get out of this one?

Needless to say, these mildly sweet peppers won my heart over, as do most Italian recipes. ❤

How to Cook Italian Stuffed Cubanelle Peppers

Knowing how to cook Italian stuffed cubanelle peppers is easy because the recipe is very flexible. The basic premise is as follows.

  1. Cut the tops off the cubanelle peppers and gently remove the seeds
  2. Create the filling using the breadcrumb and meat mixture
  3. Stuff the cubanelles
  4. Bake in an oven at 375F for 60 to 90 minutes

Keep in mind, these Italian peppers can be stuffed with beef and bread crumbs, or just bread crumbs. In addition, this recipe freezes and reheats extremely well, making them perfect for leftovers.

Click Here to Skip the Cooking Tips and Jump to Recipe

What are Cubanelle Peppers

There are green peppers and then there are cubanelle peppers.

Cubanelle peppers are those oblong light-ish green peppers that you see at the grocery store.  And if like me, you always wondered what people used them for.

I don’t grow these peppers like my mother-in-law did, so I’m not sure what kind specifically she grew, but here’s a picture below of the ones I bought for this recipe.

At the time they cost about $3.99/lb at Heinen’s.  

Cubanelle peppers

They don’t have that real strong green-peppery flavor and the skin isn’t as tough and thick like a regular green pepper.

So when they are done cooking, the pepper is soft and easy to eat, but not mushy.

Plus these aren’t spicy, like Mexican poblano peppers – don’t get those!  These are mild and have a slightly sweet flavor making them perfect for Italian stuffed peppers.

Italian Stuffed Peppers with Bread Crumbs Mixture

Italian stuffed cubanelle bread crumb mixture
Italian stuffed cubanelles ready to bake.

Unlike typical stuffed peppers which often use rice and tomatoes, this recipe uses Italian ingredients that are comprised of:

  • Breadcrumbs
  • Beef
  • Egg (optional)
  • Basil
  • Parsley
  • Romano cheese  

I don’t bother adding extra salt because the Romano is salty enough.  If you use Parmesan cheese it’s up to you if you want to add any.

One thing – my  recipe calls for an egg as a binder (like a meatball).  You do not have to include an egg if you don’t want to. I’ve made them both ways with success.  

Also, if your meat is lean (like 93/7), it will be a little tougher, but still tastes great.  When I have lean meat, I make sure to use the egg, add in more olive oil, and add additional bread crumbs.

How can an Italian Stuffed Cubanelle Peppers Recipe not Include Garlic?

In case you’re wondering if I forgot the garlic the answer is no. Using garlic in this mixture would overpower the recipe. This is still an authentic Italian stuffed cubanelle peppers recipe!

But, sometimes when I make recipes like these, I take some garlic cloves and toss them in the pan with the skin still on and make roasted garlic.  It comes out tasting amazing.

Do You Cook the Meat Before Stuffing the Cubanelles?

place stuffed cubanelles in pan
This recipe stuffs the peppers with raw meat.

So, for this recipe I prepare the peppers like my mother-in-law showed me which is that you stuff it raw and cook everything together.

Just make sure the internal temperature is 165F. If you follow my instructions, this won’t be a problem at all. This is easier, simpler and saves lots of time.  

But If you look online, it seems everyone cooks the meat first.  I don’t’ know why that is.  So I guess if you want to cook the meat first, go ahead.

I stuff mine raw and cook it for 60 to 90 minutes at 375F, making sure the beef is cooked thoroughly which it is every time I’ve made these.

The peppers are super soft and easy to cut and eat; you don’t need a knife. The aroma is absolutely amazing too!

Ok, let’s get started.  I’ll give the ingredients, the instructions and then list some noteworthy tips that will prove useful.

This recipe serves 4 people, assuming 2 peppers a person.  In our house, it serves 2 people, 4 peppers each.😉 Increase portions for more quantity.

Use the Italian Cubanelle Stuffing for Other Recipes

The first time I made Italian Stuffed Cubanelle Peppers I had extra stuffing/mixture left over, so I took some mushrooms I had and popped off the stems and stuffed the mushrooms.

Italian Stuffed Cubanelles i oven with mushrooms

I put the stuffed mushrooms right in the pan with the peppers and let the water from the mushrooms act a substitute for adding water in order for it to cook.

You can see my image above.

If you’re wondering what pan I used, I used our 5.5 qt. Cuisinart French Classic Tri-Ply Stainless pan – shown in the image.

It is light weight, can go in the oven or be used on the stove.  It has high sides and I just love it.

Just remember the handles and lid are hot after you take it out!  Yeah – personal experience.

What to Serve with Italian Stuffed Cubanelle Peppers?

This Italian cubanelle peppers recipe can be served as a main dish or a side dish. Either way the recipe goes well with pasta, especially pasta with a simple meatless marinara sauce.

If serving in a large gathering, consider cooking peppers, onion, and sausage. As for vegetables, make Italian green beans as a nice side dish or a green salad. Finally, serve with some fresh Italian bread!

How to Store Italian Stuffed Peppers

On many occasions I have made these in large quantity with the purpose of freezing my cooked cubanelles. These can store in the refrigerator in an air tight container for up 3 days.

You can also keep them in the freezer for up to 6 months. I freeze them pre-cooked.

To reheat the stuffed cubanelles, let them thaw in the refrigerator for a day in advance. Reheat in the oven at 325F covered for 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated through.

I hope you enjoy this recipe.

Italian Stuffed Peppers Recipe
4.5 from 10 votes
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Italian Stuffed Cubanelle Peppers Recipe

Here's a tried and true Italian family recipe for cubanelle stuffed peppers! It is easy and quick to make, simply stuff and bake in the oven. Lots of flavor!

Course Main Dish, Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Keyword Italian Stuffed Cubanelle Peppers
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 4 people

Ingredients

  • 2 cups breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 1 lb ground beef try not to go too lean
  • 7-9 cubanelle or Italian peppers
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • pepper as needed optional. salt is already in the cheese.
  • 2 tbsp dried or fresh basil
  • 2 tbsp dried or fresh parsley

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.

  2. Meanwhile, wash your peppers and cut the tops off

  3. In a medium bowl, mix the breadcrumbs, eggs, cheese, herbs, olive oil, salt and pepper and mix well with the beef.

  4. Carefully stuff each pepper with the seasoned beef mixture

  5. Place in an oven proof dish/pan (note – some mixture may come out)

  6. Add a little water (about 1/4 cup maybe) to help steam them, cover and bake for 60 -90 minutes until the peppers are extremely soft and beef is cooked to at least 165F.

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

  1. Regarding exact amounts for each ingredient, the measurements I gave are rough.   I like more cheese in mine, but you might like more beef or breadcrumbs.   This is one of those recipes that you can eyeball.  I’ve even used oatmeal as a filler when low on other ingredients. 🙂 
  2. Don’t worry if the peppers stick a little on the bottom of the pan, sometimes I’ve had to scrape them off, probably from not adding enough water, but do the best you can!  

I hope you try this recipe and if you do, please do me a favor and let me know how it goes and if you make any adjustments!

Salute!

Liz
Easy Italian Recipes from my family to yours!

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42 Comments

  1. I made these but they were way to dry. I think only maybe 1 cup of breadcrumbs. Other than that they were good

  2. I see an egg in your ingredients but I don’t see it being used in the recipe. Do you add it or not.

  3. Hi Carole,

    Thanks for pointing that out, I’ve updated the instructions! You want to use the egg as a binder by mixing it with the beef, cheese, herbs and breadcrumbs mixture. Basically just like you would for a meatloaf or meatball! Enjoy!

  4. Hi Phyllis, either way is fine. If it were me I would think about the time it takes to cook from frozen. So if I was freezing it to have less time to cook during the week I would pre cook. I have frozen leftovers and they were fine being reheated. I hope that helps! I have also frozen them uncooked and let them that then cooked them.

  5. Hi! I have been crazy about these peppers for years,but had only had them Italian Style at a Restaurant in Fort Lauderdale.
    There’s don’t include meat,only bread crumbs and taste of vinegar and spices.
    Also,no cheese!
    I’ve never attempted cooking them myself,but now will try using your recipe.
    Thanks and be well!

  6. 5 stars
    I have made this recipes several times and it turns out fantastic!!
    My brother loves stuffed peppers and I am making this recipe for him!! thank you

  7. A friend gave us some peppers so I was looking for a recipe and decided to try yours. I’m not usually a fan of stuffed peppers but these were really good! I would make them again. Thanks!

  8. 5 stars
    Hi Liz,

    I stuff and smoke bacon wrapped Cubanelle’s all the time. I was looking for ideas for different stuffings and this looks fabulous. I have fresh basil and Italian parsley on hand, so I will skip the breadcrumbs and wrap the stuffed peppers in bacon. Other than that, I will follow what you have done!

  9. 5 stars
    I made these over the summer,with the Cubenells I grew from my garden, they were DELISH!! I did pour a small can of tomato sauce over them too. These freeze beautifully.

  10. 3 stars
    Tried this today. Tasty, but too dry, even with using 1 cup of breadcrumbs. I can’t imagine what the results would have been using 2 cups.

  11. I have made these but my Grandmother suggested not using meat and we tried them with bread crumbs and we added a can of anchovies mashed an a little olive oil. came out delicious

  12. Making stuffed peppers tonight. In our family we have two different stuffing. One with make with Italian sausage (casing removed) and the other is from my Italian grandmother’s recipe: toast the breadcrumbs in a skillet, drizzle some EVO and then add a can of flat anchovies. Stir until well mixed. Depending on the quantity and size I find at the store, I either stuff a full pepper or split them down the middle.

  13. 2 stars
    I made these tonight and they were so dry! I used 85/15 ground beef and 2 cups bread crumbs. Wish I read reviews before to use less. I cooked an hour thinking that was min from 60-90 but it was way too long .

  14. 5 stars
    Thanks for the recipe. I usually am more concerned with technique (covered, oven temp,etc) but this was great. I hate when folks ‘re-write’ recipes on line, but thought I would add my Italian two cents in case people need some add’l reassurance when preparing. I prepare mixture like I would meatballs – no exact measurements or ingredients. I used 1lb lean ground meat – so added add’l 1/2 lb of Italian sausage (not my usual Italian store links, but had to use grocery store sausage, all good) added about 1 cup of bread crumbs and two eggs. Plus my fresh basil, about teaspoon of fennel seeds – cause it gives extra Italian flavor. Plus I used about 1/2 cup of shredded Asiago cheese. I love garlic so added several cloves minced. I don’t like stuffed peppers with out tomatoe sauce, so scoop a few spoonfuls over each pepper to help add flavor and steam cook the peppers before covering the pan. I also had some eggplant, so added 2 halves stuffed as well. I also had cut my peppers in half before stuffing lengthwise to help with cooking and draining juices. After an hour, I remove the juices in bottom of pan, and add add’l fresh pasta sauce and cheese topping before final 1/2 hr in oven.

  15. First year I planted Italian peppers. I thought they were the spicy ones. They are more like a green bell pepper, but milder which I love. Didn’t know what to do with them other then chopped up with eggs. Making this tonight! Thks

  16. 5 stars
    Made this yesterday. Did start by sauteing some garlic in olive oil (I love garlic in everything) and then browning the beef with the herbs. Eyeballed the breadcrumbs, but did look about 2 cups to me. Used parmesan instead of romano, quite a bit more than suggested, at least a cup. Cooked for 1 hr 15 mins. Delicious.

  17. These are the closest to my Mom’s however she made them during lent which meant no meat but I will add ground beef or sausage meat. My question is , she used soaked bread (as in meatballs). Are your breadcrumbs from a can like panko or another type of crumbs? Thanks.

  18. Hi Tano,
    I do not use breadcrumbs from a can. I make my own breadcrumbs and use those, but you can also soak the bread just like you would for meatballs – I’m sure they would still turn our great. I would not use panko breadcrumbs, and if that’s all I had I’d just give it a pulse in the blender to make them a little finer. I bet the non-meat version your mom made tasted amazing – thanks for sharing!

  19. 5 stars
    Something is not right with the article that precedes the recipe. When you get to the full recipe at the bottom of the page you say that you prefer to use raw meat and it will cook thru as you bake at 375ºf for 60 to 90 minutes. But in the story at the top it says you bake it for only 45 to 60 minutes?

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