This easy stuffed pepper soup recipe is seriously one of the best we’ve ever made and it instantly became a new family favorite! With all the classic ingredients of stuffed pepper, this unstuffed pepper soup recipe is so simple and can be made as a crockpot stuffed pepper soup, in a pressure cooker or on the stovetop.
With the traditional ingredients of ground beef, rice (or cauliflower rice), bell peppers, seasoning, cheese, and tomatoes, we doubled this recipe and made it TWO WAYS…. the classic way with rice AND as a low carb keto stuffed pepper soup version. Skip the dairy and Worcestershire sauce, and this is a paleo pepper soup recipe too.
One soup was made in a crock-pot and the other on the stove, so we’re sharing two methods. Both turned out FABULOUS! We also just added the instant pot instructions for our pressure cooker friends!
Our family has a variety of health, diet, and allergy concerns so I often double meals and test variations. I honestly can’t say one option (slow cooker vs stovetop or with rice vs cauliflower rice) was better than the other.
A printable recipe card is at the bottom of the post!
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Easy Stuffed Pepper Soup Recipe
This past summer we had an insane amount of green and red peppers growing in our garden. And since we were also recent empty-nesters, we had a tough time getting through the green peppers as fast as they were growing!
This began our love affair stuffed peppers! They make the perfect “bowl” for so many of your favorite dishes, whether it be for our super popular keto stuffed peppers, taco stuffed peppers, fajita stuffed peppers or basically anything you can think of.
Since it’s now “soup season” and anything hot in a bowl shoots to the top of our dinner menu, we decided to turn our beloved traditional stuffed pepper recipe into an “unstuffed” green pepper soup.
This truly makes the BEST stuffed pepper soup recipe and it’s even kid-friendly since it’s not spicy. We made this crockpot stuffed pepper soup version with rice and also make it low carb with cauliflower rice. The recipe for the low carb adaption, instant pot recipe, and 1-hour stovetop version are also included with this post.
Why This Recipe Works
- The stuffed pepper soup recipe only takes 15 mins to prep and then your crockpot does the rest
- Mixing in multiple aromatics makes for a bold and deep flavored broth
- Using an 80/20 ground beef means more flavorful meat
- Adding shredded cheddar at the end makes this recipe the ultimate comfort food
- It’s easy to adapt to dietary restrictions or to make it lower fat, low carb/keto, paleo or vegan
Ingredients for the BEST Stuffed Pepper Soup
Since diced tomatoes and tomato sauce form the basis of so many fabulous soup recipes, we love to stock up at Costco and keep a case of each in our pantry.
And since this crockpot stuffed pepper soup recipe freezes well, this is also easy to double if you have a large slow cooker! I don’t know about you, but some nights just being able to pull dinner out of the freezer is a lifesaver.
1 lb ground beef (80/20 ratio)
1 1/2 cups chopped bell peppers (green or red)
3 cups beef broth
1 onion, medium size diced
2 tsp minced garlic
2 cans of 14 1/2 oz diced tomatoes
1 can of 14 1/2 oz tomato sauce
2 tsp Worcestershire
1 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp Italian seasoning
1 1/2 cups cooked white or brown rice (or cauliflower rice)
1+ cups cheddar cheese, shredded
And yes, you can see in the photos I mixed two different brands of diced tomatoes, gotta use up what’s in the pantry first!
Feel free to add seasoned tomatoes like a Rotel with mild green peppers mixed in for a little kick.
The type of white rice we used was short-grain rice, but long-grain rice like Jasmine would work just as well. Short grain rice is often more sticky, but in a soup it separated perfectly fine.
How to Make Crockpot Stuffed Pepper Soup
Making slow cooker stuffed pepper soup is the best option when you don’t want to keep an eye on a stovetop soup or just simply want to have an option where you dump the ingredients and check back 4 hours later.
Preheat the slow cooker on the Low setting while you prep the rest of the crockpot stuffed pepper soup.
On medium heat in a large skillet, cook ground beef (we used 80/20 ratio) until cooked through, which will take about 6-7 minutes.
Drain the grease and add the chopped onion and garlic to the pan. Cook for a few minutes until the onion starts to soften. You do not need to completely cook the onion, it’ll finish cooking in the slow cooker.
Add the ground beef and onion mix to the crockpot.
Add the diced bell peppers, we used a mix of half red and half green bell pepper.
Mix in all remaining ingredients except for the rice and cheese, which includes the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, beef broth, Worcestershire sauce, garlic salt, ground pepper, and Italian seasoning.
Cook on low for 4-5 hours.
Mix in the pre-cooked white or brown rice in the last 30 minutes of cooking. If you don’t plan to eat all of the soup at one time, do NOT mix in all of the rice since it will absorb the liquid and turn this into a stew by the next day. If you’re just eating part of the soup for dinner, add about 1/4 cup+ of warmed and cooked rice to each bowl.
If you’re substituting cauliflower rice, you’d just add pre-cooked or defrosted frozen cauliflower (which is what we did) at the same time as you would have with the rice.
Add shredded cheddar to each bowl before serving. Garnish with cilantro or fresh parsley if desired.
Traditional stuffed peppers come with a layer of shredded cheddar cheese on the top, for some reason many crockpot stuffed bell pepper soup recipes out there don’t include cheese? It’s definitely optional if you aren’t eating dairy or want to make this lower fat, but a heavy sprinkle of shredded cheddar makes this soup MAGNIFICANT!
Since the crock-pot stuffed pepper soup doesn’t require all day to cook in a slow cooker, this is the perfect soup to make on a lunch break or on a weekend! Freezes well too for meal prep.
Recipe yields 6+ servings.
Our version truly makes the BEST crock-pot stuffed pepper soup!!
Instant Pot Version
For our instant pot version, it’s perfectly fine to add in uncooked rice! The crockpot version called for pre-cooked rice since I created it when I had extra rice already cooked in the fridge. We love how adaptable this soup recipe is. The entire recipe can be on the table in just 40 minutes using a pressure cooker, including the come to pressure time. The soup itself only needs to be cooked under pressure for 10 mins.
- Set Instant Pot to Saute High and cook the ground beef with the garlic salt, Italian seasoning, and ground black pepper.
- Add the beef broth to the pot and stir, scraping up any browned bits of meat from the bottom.
- Add the diced peppers, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, uncooked rice (or cauliflower rice), and Worchestershire to the pot and mix it all together.
- Cook on Manual high pressure (or Pressure Cook high depending on your model) for 10 minutes.
- Once done, let the soup sit in the pot for 5 more minutes before doing a quick release.
- If you’re using pre-cooked rice that’s still cold, put the pot on Saute and heat until the rice is heated through.
- Add the shredded cheddar cheese and other garnishes to each bowl, as desired.
Pepper Soup Recipe (Stovetop 1 Hr)
We also love to make this stuffed pepper soup recipe on the stovetop, from start to finish it only takes 1 hour to cook! That basically means you have time to make it on a busy weeknight too, just get the ingredients in the pot and let it simmer away until done.
That’ll even give you time to squeeze in an episode of your favorite Netflix show while it cooks.
Stuffed Pepper Soup Recipe Steps
Preheat a large pot or dutch oven over medium heat on the stovetop.
Cook the ground beef, reserving 1 Tbsp of grease to later cook the onion, drain the remaining grease, and set the beef aside.
Cook the onion for 5-7 minutes, until soft and cooked through. Add the 2 tsp of minced garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
Add the beef back to the pot and all remaining ingredients, except the rice and cheese. This includes the chopped bell peppers, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes in juice, beef broth, garlic salt, black pepper, and Italian seasoning.
Bring the stuffed pepper soup recipe to a gentle boil over medium-high heat and then turn down to a simmer. Continue cooking the soup covered on simmer for 30 minutes.
Stir in the pre-cooked rice or cauliflower rice and simmer 20-30 mins until the cauliflower is cooked and the soup is heated through. This makes for a pretty chunky soup, you can definitely add more broth if you want to thin it out a little bit.
And if you missed this tip under the slow cooker instructions, if you aren’t planning to eat the soup all in one sitting, the rice absorbs the liquid in the soup and by the next day, it’ll look like a stew. So just adding about 1/4 cup of warm cooked rice to each bowl of soup is a handy tip to keep that from happening.
Adding extra broth and seasoning is always an option if you go to eat that leftover bowl of soup and it doesn’t look like soup anymore haha.
Stuffed Peppers Soup Recipe Tips
- Preheat the crockpot before you add the ingredients. To cook the beef and add it warm to a cold pot just sets back the cooking time. Preheat while you’re prepping the other ingredients.
- To make the soup lower fat and healthy, substitute lean ground turkey, ground beef or chicken. Skip the cheese.
- Save your self some prep time by using frozen cut bell peppers and defrost before adding to the pot.
- Any grain works well…short or long grain rice, brown rice, cauliflower rice
- Make the soup paleo by skipping the cheese and Worcestershire sauce
- Turn this into a vegetarian soup with vegetable broth and swap the meat for beans
- Add more broth to the soup if it thickens up too much
- Instead of mixing in the rice, add 1/4 cup cooked rice to each serving to prevent the rice from absorbing the broth
Keto Stuffed Pepper Soup
We made two versions of this soup, one was traditional with rice and the other was a keto stuffed pepper soup since my husband has been following a keto diet.
The stuffed pepper soup recipe is such an easy dish to make low carb and keto-friendly! Plus, the main vegetable in this soup is bell peppers, which are also one of the lowest carb vegetables. Bonus!
To make this a low carb stuffed pepper soup, simply swap the pre-cooked rice for cauliflower rice, when the recipe says to add the rice. It’s that easy. We used frozen cauliflower rice which I defrosted first and then added to the pot 30 minutes before serving.
The cauliflower rice was perfectly cooked by the time the pot of soup was ready to eat.
Worcestershire sauce has 1 net carb and includes a trace amount of sugar. If you’re on a strict keto diet it’s completely fine to not add the Worcestershire sauce to the recipe. It adds a nice little kick but it isn’t essential.
We skipped the Worcestershire sauce in our version of the low carb stuffed pepper soup recipe, and swapped plain diced tomatoes with Rotel diced tomatoes with mild green peppers.
And be sure to use no sugar added tomatoes, tomato sauce, and broth too!
Can I Freeze Unstuffed Pepper Soup?
One of the things we really love about this soup, is that not only does it come together quickly, but you can easily double it, and freeze half of the cooked soup for another meal.
Soups that are cream-based do not freeze well and turn grainy, but since this is a broth and tomato-based soup, it makes an ideal candidate for freezing.
Tip: If you plan to freeze the stuffed pepper soup recipe, do not add the rice or cheese, and put in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months.
IF you already mixed in the rice and decide after the fact to freeze some, you might need to add more broth when you go to reheat the soup.
To reheat stuffed pepper soup, defrost overnight in the fridge. Reheat in a crockpot for 1-2 hours on low until heated through. On the stovetop, bring the soup to a low bowl over medium-high heat, and then reduce the heat to simmer and reheat with the lid on for 3o minutes, or until warm and heated through.
Other Bell Pepper Recipes You’ll Love
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Instant Pot Instructions
(Stovetop 1 Hr Recipe)
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