My Cream Cheese Stuffed Peppers are always an instant crowd pleaser when entertaining. This versatile recipe can be served as an appetizer, main entrée or side dish and it always makes for a unique and creative presentation.
I like using Anaheim or Cubanelle peppers for this recipe, the sweet baby bell peppers also work well. If you love spicy hot peppers, then feel free to use jalapeños or even Hungarian wax peppers. These delicious stuffed peppers can either be baked in an oven or grilled on a barbeque – you can even grill them on an indoor grill pan. This dish is just perfect for entertaining since the peppers can stuffed ahead of time and then simply baked off or grilled right before serving.
Chaat masala is unique blend of spices commonly used in Indian snacks (or chaats). Black salt (kala namak) is one of the main ingredients in this particular spice blend. High in trace minerals, black salt has a very distinctive taste and flavor that is quite difficult to duplicate. It’s also not really black, but rather a dull pink in color. Chaat masala can easily be found in any Indian grocery store or market.
CREAM CHEESE STUFFED PEPPERS – Indian Style
6-8 Anaheim peppers (or Cubanelle peppers, baby bell peppers or peppers of your choice)
1 cup cream cheese (softened at room temperature)
½ cup ricotta cheese
2 garlic cloves, very finely minced
1½” piece of ginger, peeled & very finely minced
½ cup cilantro leaves, finely minced
½ tsp ground cumin powder
¼ tsp chaat masala (or garam masala)
salt & pepper, to taste
1+ tbsp oil, vegetable or canola (as needed)
In a medium size mixing bowl, combine the ricotta with the softened cream cheese. Then mix in the garlic, ginger, cilantro leaves, ground cumin powder, chaat masala, salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until needed.
Trim and prepare the peppers by removing their stems and then cutting them equally in half lengthwise. Next, remove the inner membranes and seeds. Rub a little oil on the outside of the peppers and then using a small teaspoon, carefully fill each pepper-half with the cream cheese mixture.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Then arrange the peppers on a foiled lined baking sheet (filled side up) and bake on the center rack for 8-10 minutes or until the outside is slightly charred. Let the peppers cool slightly before serving.
Grill the peppers over medium high heat for 5-7 minutes or until the outside is slightly charred. Let the peppers cool slightly before serving.
Serve them warm with your favorite sauces and chutneys.
Feel free to use paneer cheese instead if you prefer: use 1 cup of softened paneer cheese and ½ cup of softened cream cheese. Then follow the recipe as directed above.