by Olena

Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers

by Olena

4.5 from 6 reviews

Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers are healthy and easy even weeknight dinner. No pre-cooking rice and it is one pot and a freezer meal. So much easier than on the stove.

I love my Instant Pot! Other easy one pot meals would be Instant Pot cabbage rolls, turkey chili and chicken tacos. Browse all of my healthy Instant Pot recipes and kiss “What’s for dinner?” dilemma good-bye.

Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers garnished with yogurt and green onion

Pressure Cooker Stuffed Peppers

I made Instant Pot stuffed peppers twice in a week before I went on work trips. Who am I kidding?! I made a whole batch of healthy freezer meals for my husband. We loved this Instant Pot stuffed bell peppers recipe A LOT – easy, one pot and tasty.

I’m turning into you – those who work full-time not from home and are like “What’s for dinner?” at 5 PM. I have been living off of my healthy Instant Pot recipes because life has been crazy with the move, renovations and work travel.

If you still don’t have an Instant Pot, check out which one you should buy (maybe?). It is seriously a revolutionary appliance worth every penny. And then I have Instant Pot guide that will help you get started. Are you convinced? Don’t miss out any longer!

All right, Instant Pot stuffed peppers.


  • Ground turkey
  • Quinoa
  • Onion
  • Tomato sauce
  • Simple seasonings

How to Make Stuffed Peppers in Instant Pot

Instant Pot stuffed peppers are easy-peasy comfort food my mom used to make all the time. 100% nostalgia and I bet for you as well.

  1. Cut the tops off of peppers and chop them along with onion.
  2. Saute them.
  3. Make the stuffing with ground turkey, uncooked quinoa and spices.
  4. Add sauteed veggies to the stuffing and mix.
  5. Stuff peppers.
  6. Arrange one layer of peppers and top with half of the tomato sauce. Repeat.
  7. Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes.
  8. Release pressure right away.

how to make pressure cooker stuffed peppers

Can I Replace Quinoa with Uncooked Rice?

If you are not a fan of quinoa you can substitute it with buckwheat. And if you are not a fan of buckwheat you can use any 12-15 minute cooking grain. And if none fit your “likes list” you can use pre-cooked rice to make traditional pressure cooker stuffed peppers.

As for uncooked rice, that’s my next test and I will report back when I try. That’s why I used quinoa because I knew for sure it’s a quick cooking grain/seed.

Make Ahead and Freeze?


  1. Assemble stuffed peppers and do not cook.
  2. Freeze uncooked in a gallon size Ziploc bags – let out as much air as possible before sealing.
  3. Cooking frozen stuffed peppers: cook from frozen following recipe’s instructions increasing time to 20 minutes. Do not thaw.

can stuffed peppers be made ahead and frozen

More Healthy One Pot Dinners

Looking for more dinner ideas? Check out my most popular collection of 30 healthy Instant Pot recipes.


Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers

4.5 from 6 reviews

Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers are healthy and easy in your pressure cooker. No pre-cooking rice and it is one pot dinner and a freezer meal.

  • Author: Olena of
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: American Ukrainian


  • 89 large bell peppers
  • 2 lbs ground turkey
  • 1 cup quinoa, uncooked
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp oregano, dried
  • 1 tsp thyme, dried
  • 1 tsp basil, dried
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
  • Ground black pepper
  • 15 oz can tomato sauce, low sodium
  • 1 cup water
  • Avocado oil, for frying


  1. Cut the tops off of peppers and remove + discard the seeds. From the cut off tops remove and discard “the tail” and chop the tops (nothing goes to waste). Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, add ground turkey, uncooked quinoa, soy sauce, oregano, thyme, basil, salt, red pepper flakes and ground black pepper.
  3. On Instant Pot, press Sauté and preheat until it says Hot. Swirl oil to coat, add onion and sauté for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add chopped pepper pieces and sauté for another 3-4 minutes. Press Cancel and transfer sautéed veggies to the bowl with other ingredients. Using a spatula, mix all ingredients really well. Stuff the peppers diving the filling between them equally.
  4. In an Instant Pot, add water and place the rack inside. Arrange 1 layer of peppers and top with half of the tomato sauce. Lay remaining peppers and top with remaining sauce. Close the lid, turn release vent to Sealing and press Pressure Cooking for 15 minutes on High.
  5. After peppers are cooked, turn the valve to Quick Release and release the pressure. Serve with plain yogurt and juices from the bottom of the pot (turkey baster is the best to suck those up).

Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days.

Freezer Meal: Assemble the peppers and freeze uncooked in gallon size Ziploc bags. When ready to cook, cook from frozen following recipe’s instructions increasing time to 20 minutes. Do not thaw.

Make Ahead: Refrigerate stuffed uncooked peppers for up to 2 days and cook when ready.


I have 8 quart Instant Pot and it’s large enough to cook all peppers at once. If yours is 6 quart, cook in 2 batches.

You can replace quinoa with pre-cooked brown rice or uncooked buckwheat.

 Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating in the comments.

olena osipov in the studio

Hello and welcome to iFOODreal.

My name is Olena Osipov. I'm a mom to 2 boys and a wife to Alex. And this is our healthy family recipes blog. I grew up in Ukraine on real food. As an adult, I tried many diets without results. Now for over 10 years, I cook quick and easy healthy meals for my family. I can help you with “What’s for dinner?” too.

What You Will Find Here

Healthy family recipes with simple ingredients. Many are inspired by my Ukrainian heritage. I share mostly dinner recipes because it just never ends... I’m obsessed with healthy freezer meals. And more than in love with my Instant Pot.

A Little More About Me

Originally from Ukraine, I now reside on magic Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada with my family. I started this blog in 2012 when I ended up at home with 2 small kids unemployed and a wee bit chubby.

15 comments on “Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers

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  1. These peppers are good when made from fresh, however, once frozen, I do not recommend cooking in the slow cooker. The peppers lost so much water while cooking that there was essentially no pepper left. I ended up with the skin of the pepper around a large chunk of meat. I don’t have an instant pot, so I can’t speak to how they would have turned out using that method of cooking, but I definitely wouldn’t not freeze them to make in a slow cooker again.

    1. You know, you are right. I’m sorry I didn’t think of that. I used to freeze chopped local bell peppers and I remember if I thaw them completely it’s a watery mess. Sorry about that. I will change that!

  2. Loved this! So easy and delicious. Next time I would actually add a bit more salt. I don’t love a ton of salt, but I think a bit more would bring out the flavors. I halved the recipe for my 6 qt and put 4 in the pot and froze one for later 🙂 Thanks for the recipe!!

  3. I really enjoyed making this recipe, and the peppers taster great! I had a problem though and I hope you can help me solve it. The quinoa did not cook, it only cooked on the very top portion on the peppers. Now, I did only cook half the amount of peppers and froze the other I made at the same time. Did the Quinoa not cook because I had half the amount of peppers? Do I need to add more liquid? I put the tomato sauce on top as well. I really loved the taste and the ease of the meal, I want to cook my frozen ones but I am worried about the same issue with uncooked Quinoa. Thanks for any advice! Love the website sooooo much!

    1. Oh my. In all my many times of cooking in IP I have never seen quinoa not cook. It is such a quick cooking seed! I think there are a few possibilities why.
      1. Quinoa was old.
      2. Your IP didn’t seal.
      3. Maybe the sealing ring was off a bit.

      But at same time if your meat was cooked but not quinoa, probably issue was with quinoa… Is it quinoa that you used? Maybe was smth else? Just checking.:)

      But for the rest of the peppers, cook them from frozen for extra 10 mins. Should be fine. Also maybe your altitude is a bit higher so needs a tad bit more cooking time.

  4. Please understand that I modified this recipe as follows to suit our tastes.

    First, I used ground beef (85%) ,instead of turkey. I did not dice and include the pepper tops. I used Uncle Ben’s Ten Minute Brown Rice as well. Further, I used Italian spiced tomato sauce and mixed half of the can in with the stuffing. I also left out the red pepper flakes. As I have a 6 quart pot I made six peppers. Could probably have gotten eight in there tho. I did not change any of the ingredient amounts or proportions.

    Cooked the dish for 35 minutes. Came out great, maybe a bit dry, but I will up the amount of tomato sauce and tweak the spices a bit next time.

    All in all a good and satisfying dish.

    1. I think because you didn’t use pepper tops the stuffed peppers were a bit dry. But main reason think you cooked them way too long. It’s a pressure cooker so it cooks food faster. Try 15 mins as I did and see. They will be cooked otherwise I wouldn’t be serving raw peppers to my family. Im not crazy. I’m sure they will be less dry.:)

      1. Only reason I cooked them that long was the rice. I wanted to be sure it would be cooked. Will surely cut the time on the next try.

  5. Deee-licious! My husband and 14 year old daughter had TWO each! This is saying a lot because my husband doesn’t usually like stuffed peppers I had 1.5.
    I served this with yogurt that I made in the Instant Pot 🙂

    Good tip from your Chicken and Rice recipe to vent the Instant Pot outside. I’m sure the neighbors are wondering why there is steam coming off my deck so frequently recently!

    I’m going to try making the Beef Stew next…

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