Healthy Chili Rellenos

>> Thursday, April 15, 2010

I really like chili rellenos, but they are so unhealthy. Chili rellenos consist of Anaheim or Poblano peppers that have been broiled so that the skins can be removed and stuffed with either cheese, meat or a combination of both. But it doesn't stop there. After the chilis have been stuffed, they are battered and fried! Holy calorie overload! I decided to try my hand at a more healthy version. I scoured the Interwebz, but couldn't come up with anything. So, I put my mind to work. These are a combination of my Stuffed Bell Peppers and tacos (sort of). Oh and beware, these babies are nice and spicy! If you don't like heat, leave out the cayenne. And if you want to cut down on the fat even more, leave out the cheese or use reduced fat. Here's what I came up with:

Steph's Healthy Chili Rellenos

6 Poblano or Anaheim peppers
1 yellow onion, diced
2 large cloves of garlic (or up to 4 small ones), minced
1 lb 97% or more fat free ground turkey
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 jalapenos, seeded and diced
2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 can black beans, rinsed (I use Sun Vista salt-free)
Jalapeno-Jack cheese (I didn't measure, but I grated a 1in x 2in x 1.5in piece of Organic Valley, roughly 1 to 1 1/2 Tbsp per chili)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Fill a large pot with water and put on the stove to heat up. Cut a "T" into each pepper carefully. Try to remove the ribs and seeds from each pepper. I had to shake mine into the sink to remove more seeds. Put the peppers into the pot of water. When the peppers are softened, take out of the water using a tongs and lay on a towel to dry.

Meanwhile, heat a pan with 1 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add garlic and onions and cook for a few minutes. Add in the turkey and cook until browned. Put in all spices and the jalapenos and cook for a few more minutes. Finally, add in the tomatoes and beans and cook until thoroughly mixed and heated through.

Mist a glass cooking dish (or two in my case) with non-stick cooking spray. Carefully lay the peppers in the pan(s) and fill them with the meat mixture. Sprinkle a little cheese inside each pepper and bake for 15-20 minutes.

By the time I had added the spices to the pan, Jason had already come into the kitchen to tell me that it smelled really good. Then, I let him sneak a piece of turkey and he LOVED it. Here's the chilis right before I put them in the oven:

 And here's one on my plate served with brown rice and sliced avocado:


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