These Herby Ricotta Stuffed Peppers taste straight out of Tuscany with fresh herbs, creamy ricotta, and sharp parmesan. Ready in under an hour (with minimal hands-on time), they’re a simple side dish that packs a punch of flavor.
This recipe has been improved to fix issues some readers were having with there not being enough filling. Enjoy!
For someone who loves Italy and Italian food, the need to have good Italian recipes on Live Eat Learn is strong! We have Bruschetta Pizza and Classic Panzanella among some of the most popular ones, but these herby stuffed ricotta peppers are much needed.
During my travels, I was most obsessed with Italian food. It’s a cuisine that focuses on using the most high-quality ingredients but only using a few of them to really impart flavor. This just so coincides with Live Eat Learn’s mottos to create really good vegetarian food with simple ingredients.
Anyway, when making these stuffed peppers I wanted to replicate the amazing tastes you get when you’re actually in Italy. Which I knew was a long shot because I thought real Italian food could only be food you eat in Italy, ya know? As it turns out, I was terribly wrong and I’m so happy I get to share a little bit of Italy with you!
why you’ll love them
- Flavor, flavor, flavor. With 3 kinds of cheese and so many herbs, these just have so much flavor and I want to scream it from the rooftop!
- Toasty and crunchy yet creamy thanks to being topped with breadcrumbs that are toasted to perfection.
- Quick and pretty which is ideal if you are feeding guests. The stuffed peppers only take 35 minutes but people will be oohing and awing over them!
“YES YES YES!! I have been looking for more meatless meals and this is perfect!! Thank you!!” —Leah
Ingredients for herb ricotta stuffed peppers
These stuffed peppers use traditional Italian flavors and three kinds of cheese for the most delicious bites! Here’s what you’ll need:
- Peppers: To make the peppers grab 4 bell peppers (any color) and a little oil.
- Spinach: Fresh spinach adds a little more oomph to the peppers. I would use fresh baby spinach as opposed to full-size spinach to make it more bite-sized.
- Ricotta Cheese: Ricotta is a great option for stuffed peppers because it’s creamy and melts well, also why it’s the main cheese in lasagna.
- Mozzarella: Preshredded mozzarella can be used here to save time, thought I always like grating my own cheeses (no matter the type of cheese!)
- Fresh Herbs: Green onions, basil, and flat-leaf parsley all come together to add fresh notes to these peppers.
- Dried herbs: Grab dried rosemary, thyme, fennel, salt, and pepper to add the herbiness to these herby stuffed peppers.
- Eggs: Eggs help the filling to set when baked.
- Bread crumbs: We top these with bread crumbs and oil at the end of the baking time so that each bite has a slight crunch.
Need these gluten-free?
Gluten-free bread crumbs work great for these stuffed peppers! You can also use seasoned bread crumbs if that’s what you have on hand or can find in the store.
how to make stuffed peppers with ricotta
Stuffed peppers really only take 4 steps and most the the time is spent trying to get the seeds out of bell peppers (why must they be so sticky?!). Let me show you!
- Prep by preheating the oven, cut and deseed the peppers, and bake to soften.
- Mix the filling together while the peppers bake.
- Stuff the peppers with the ricotta mixture.
- Top the peppers with the bread crumbs and oil.
- Bake for 30 minutes, broiling at the end for golden bread crumbs.
These peppers are best eaten the day of but leftovers will keep in the fridge sealed for up to 4 days. To reheat, pop them in the oven until heated through.
recipe testing notes
Through testing this recipe many times, I’ve learned a few things. Here’s what you need to know:
- Pre-baking the peppers helps to release excess moisture from the peppers thus preventing the filling from getting soggy.
- Adding an egg to the filling ensures the cheese mixture thickens enough so while its not *necessary* taste wise it is for texture.
- Topping with breadcrumbs makes all the difference because it adds that contrast of textures we are all after in the perfect bite!
Can I add more protein to these?
Can I use gluten-free bread crumbs?
Yup, these will work just fine for this recipe!
Can I use frozen spinach?
Yes, just be sure to thaw it completely and squeeze as much moisture out as possible before mixing with everything else.
what to serve with ricotta baked peppers
Enjoy these peppers with any classic Italian side dish. To give you a few ideas, here are some of my favorite pairings.
- Olive Oil Dip with toasted bread for a full Italian experience.
- Enjoy them with Creamy Gnocchi Soup to have a complete meal.
- Make a Summer Veggie Salad to complement these cheesy peppers.
“This was so good and simple to make. I followed the recipe exactly. Definitely will be making this dish again” —Krista
- 4 bell peppers any color
- 1 Tbsp olive oil 15 mL
- 4 cups fresh spinach
- 1 15-oz tub ricotta cheese 425 g
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- ½ cup grated parmesan 56 g
- ½ cup sliced green onions about 4 green onions
- ½ cup chopped fresh basil
- 1 handful chopped flat-leaf parsley aka Italian parsley
- 1 tsp each dried rosemary, dried thyme, fennel seed, and salt roughly smash the fennel seeds to release their flavor
- ½ tsp pepper
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup breadcrumbs
- 1 Tbsp oil
- Prep: Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C). Cut bell peppers in half lengthwise, removing seeds and ribs. Set peppers cut side up on a parchment-lined baking sheet and brush all over with olive oil. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until they begin to soften. When finished, drain the water out of each pepper and reduce oven temperature to 350°F (176°C).
- Mix: Meanwhile, microwave spinach for 15 to 30 seconds, or until wilted down. Roughly chop, then combine it in a large bowl with all remaining Filling ingredients.
- Stuff: Fill peppers evenly with the ricotta mixture.
- Topping: In a small bowl, combine breadcrumbs and 1 Tbsp of oil. Sprinkle this evenly over the peppers.
- Bake: Return peppers to oven and bake for 30 minutes. If the tops aren't golden brown at this point, turn on the broiler and let them brown, watching closely until they're done (it won't take more than a minute or two!)