Okay, so I have some major things to tell you.
First of all, these Queso Stuffed Poblanos are everything. HONESTLY.
Those mild, delicious green poblanos are cut in half and filled with a fluffy white rice mixture that has been simmered in a quick homemade tomato-onion-cilantro type sauce and stirred into happy goodness with sautéed mushrooms and spinach, and of course, a very large handful of melty cheese. They are then popped into the oven to become something reeeeeally savory and delicious. And by savory and delicious, I mean awesomely cheesy.
Ugh. Like, these are definitely the best stuffed peppers I’ve made in recent memory and eek! I just made some not that long ago.
Am I a horrible food blogger for telling you I like these better than the recent crockpot stuffed peppers? I think that wins a new kind of self-sabotaging blogger award. I definitely loved the other ones, too – I would not lie to you! – and what’s not to like about something that’s ready as fast as those little crockpot guys are? Those win in the convenience category.
But I think these new stuffed peppers have helped me come to realize that I prefer poblano peppers over bell peppers, and (SURPRISE) white rice over quinoa.
There is a time and a place for everything – and this recipe is ze time and ze place for ze white rice and ze cheese.
Secondly on my list of things to tell you today, (remember, I was making a list? DISTRACTED) you should know that these queso stuffed poblano peppers were sort of a mistake gone right, as you might remember from Sage’s and my really scrappy SnapChat video where we admitted halfway through the recipe that we had no idea what we were doing and that this recipe might not turn out.
Thankfully, we adapted, we improvised, and in the end we came out with a Queso Stuffed Poblanos victory.
PS. SnapChat? You and me? Friends? I’m @pinchofyum and I post 60% dorky food videos and 40% dorky Sage videos.
See you there.
Thirdly, let’s talk about yesterday which was Cinco de Mayo. You probably did something super fun and fabulous because you’re fun and fabulous like that. DANG.
This would have been a great recipe post for Cinco de Mayo, and yet here I am, posting it the day AFTER Cinco de Mayo. Am I slow on holidays? Maybe yes. Okay fine, ALWAYS yes.
I did make that 5 Minute Magic Green Sauce (I’m so sorry for how much I talk about that stuff but also: not even that sorry) and I did watch two more episodes of our latest TV binge show, Revenge (!!!!), and I did take my new birthday rollerblades out for their maiden voyage with Bjork and my sweet baby Sage during which time none of us lost any limbs or teeth, all of which was fun and wonderful, but not really Cinco-de-Mayo-y.
In looking back, I super wish my day and your day would have involved these Queso Stuffed Poblanos. Us, together, eating cheesy stuffed peppers with rice and mushrooms and spinach, rocking the vegetarian vibes.
Can we make that right starting, um, now?
Is 9am too early?
Fourthly and finally, as you might have seen in my Snap vid, for these peppers I used some kind of mystery magic called Queso Melt. I have no idea if this is a brand or a type of cheese or what – I just found a block of in the fancy cheese section at Target, so I shredded it up, stuffed it into my poblanos, and reaped the gloriously melty cheese rewards.
There’s a good chance that sometime in the future I’m going to find out that this cheese is actually just Velveeta repackaged with the name Queso Melt, but until that happens, I’m giving it my wholehearted cheese-loving recommendation.
It’s mild and creamy and it melts like a dream. With all that white rice and tangy tomato sauce and the sautéed mushrooms and spinach? Ohmyword. Heaven sent.
GET IT. Get all of it. Goooo.
These Queso Stuffed Poblanos are filled with sauteed mushrooms, spinach, rice, and a homemade sauce and topped with melty cheese.
For the Sauce (makes extra to save for later)
- 1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
- half of a red onion, chopped (reserve a small amount for the mushrooms later)
- a big handful of cilantro
- 1 jalapeño pepper (remove the seeds and ribs if you want it mild)
- 1 cup water
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
For the Poblano Peppers
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 8 ounces fresh mushrooms
- 8 ounces fresh spinach
- 5 poblano peppers
- 1 cup uncooked white rice
- 1 1/2 cups shredded queso melt cheese (just about any kind of cheese will work)
- 2–3 tablespoons flaxmeal (optional)
- For the sauce: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a food processor or blender, puree the sauce ingredients until mostly smooth. Set aside.
- For the filling: Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the reserved red onions and mushrooms; saute until browned and softened. Add the spinach; saute until just wilted. Add the rice and stir around in the pan to coat. Add 2 cups of the sauce from step one, stir, and simmer over medium low heat. Continue to simmer, adding a little water if necessary, until the rice is cooked (about 20 minutes). Stir in one cup of the cheese. If the mixture seems too runny, add a few tablespoons of the flax meal to act as a binder that will soak up excess moisture and hold everything together nicely. Taste and season with salt if needed.
- For the peppers: Cut the poblanos in half lengthwise and remove the ribs and seeds. Top each half with a few spoonfuls of filling and a pinch of the remaining shredded cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the poblanos are softened and the cheese is melted.
With this amount of filling, I filled about 8-10 poblano halves.