Stuffed Pepper Soup Recipe photo by Taste of Home
Total Time
Prep: 15 min. Cook: 45 min.
Stuffed pepper soup is quicker and easier to make than regular stuffed peppers—yet it is just as delicious! If you love the classic comfort food, you'll love this variation.

Updated: Jun. 11, 2024

A recipe for stuffed peppers is one of the first meals that comes to mind when I think of winter comfort food. Stuffed pepper recipes are hearty and flavorful—and the fact that they take so long to prepare somehow makes it even more rewarding when you finally dig in.

However, when I don’t have the time (or, admittedly, the patience) to wait, I make stuffed pepper soup, a variation of the classic recipe that is just as delicious but is ready in less time. Many winter soup recipes are delightful, but this stuffed bell pepper soup is for nights that you want stuffed peppers but need supper on the table sooner rather than later.

Stuffed Pepper Soup Ingredients

  • Ground beef: Ground beef is cooked in a Dutch oven before all the other ingredients are added.
  • Chopped green peppers: You can’t make stuffed peppers without bell peppers! While you can make stuffed peppers with green, red, orange or yellow bell peppers, we think green is the best choice because they’re not as sweet.
  • Tomato sauce and diced tomatoes: A lot of the flavor in the broth for stuffed green pepper soup comes from the tomatoes and tomato sauce. Even though the recipe calls for plenty of water in addition, we skip draining the canned diced tomatoes to provide a little extra liquid in which the peppers can cook. Plus, the rice will soak up some of the liquid later.
  • Brown sugar: A small amount of brown sugar adds a little bit of sweetness to balance out the other ingredients.
  • Beef bouillon granules: Instead of using chicken or beef stock, we use water and beef bouillon granules to make a flavorful broth. The bouillon granule spices go especially well with the tomatoes and tomato sauce.
  • Long grain rice: We cook the rice separately and then stir it into the soup toward the end. If you don’t have long grain rice, instant rice will work too.


Step 1: Cook the ground beef

In a Dutch oven over medium heat, cook and stir the ground beef until it’s no longer pink, breaking it into crumbles. When the meat is all brown, drain the grease.

Step 2: Add other ingredients to the pot

Stir in the water, tomato sauce, undrained diced tomatoes, chopped green peppers, packed brown sugar, salt, beef bouillon granules and pepper. Bring everything to a boil. Then, reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the peppers are tender, about 30 minutes.

Step 3: Add the cooked rice

Add the cooked rice and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes longer. If desired, sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley before serving.

Editor’s Tip: If you know that you’ll have leftovers, consider topping each bowl with a scoop of cooked rice before serving instead of adding all the rice into the soup at the end. When leftover stuffed pepper soup with rice sits in the fridge overnight, the rice soaks up a lot of the broth, leaving you with a recipe that’s more like stew than soup.

Stuffed Pepper Soup Variations

  • Use a different kind of meat: Swap in sausage—mild or spicy—for half the ground beef, or trade in all the ground beef for ground chicken or turkey.
  • Get inspired by chili: Riff on homemade chili recipes by adding chili powder and beans, and top each bowl with shredded cheddar cheese and/or sour cream.
  • Add garlic: If you’re a garlic lover, add a few cloves or some garlic powder while you’re browning the beef.
  • Kick up the heat: Add cayenne pepper, or use diced tomatoes with chiles.
  • Swap out the grain: Instead of long grain white rice, use brown rice, quinoa, barley or orzo pasta. The rice absorbs a lot of liquid, so instead of stirring it in, you may want to spoon the rice into individual bowls and ladle the soup over the top.

How to Store Stuffed Pepper Soup

Divide leftover stuffed bell pepper soup into multiple airtight containers, and let it cool before popping on the lids and storing it in the fridge. Divvying up the leftovers into multiple containers helps the soup cool down faster and also makes it easier to reheat individual servings in the microwave later. Leftovers will last for three to four days.

Stuffed Pepper Soup Tips

Do you have to peel the peppers when making stuffed pepper soup?

No, the skin of bell peppers is thin and easily digestible. Peeling them is very rarely required, no matter the bell pepper recipe. Even in pureed soups like our red pepper soup, the peppers are chopped and cooked without peeling.

Should you use dark or light brown sugar?

Dark brown and light brown sugars are largely interchangeable in recipes. The difference between them is that dark brown sugar contains more molasses, so it has a bolder flavor. The choice is entirely up to you.

What do you serve with stuffed pepper soup?

With ground beef, peppers and rice, this stuffed green pepper soup doesn’t need a ton of support to make a complete meal, but a great accompaniment would have a little bit of zing to offset the natural sweetness of the peppers. Try some sour cream and cheddar biscuits or jalapeno buttermilk cornbread. If you want something more substantial, pair the soup with a grilled cheese sandwich made with garlic fontina bread.

Watch how to Make Stuffed Pepper Soup

Stuffed Pepper Soup

Prep Time 15 min
Cook Time 45 min
Yield 8 servings (2 quarts)


  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 can (28 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 2 cups chopped green peppers
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons beef bouillon granules
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups cooked long grain rice
  • Chopped fresh parsley, optional


  1. In a Dutch oven over medium heat, cook and stir beef until no longer pink, breaking it into crumbles; drain. Stir in next 8 ingredients; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, until peppers are tender, about 30 minutes.
  2. Add cooked rice; simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes longer. If desired, sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley.

Nutrition Facts

1 cup: 337 calories, 14g fat (5g saturated fat), 70mg cholesterol, 1466mg sodium, 30g carbohydrate (13g sugars, 4g fiber), 24g protein.

I was talking about stuffed peppers with the other cooks at the restaurant where I work. We decided to mix similar ingredients for a soup. Customer response was overwhelming! —Krista Muddiman, Meadville, Pennsylvania
Recipe Creator