Croatian Stuffed Peppers

Taste of home. Nostalgia.
First thing I think of when I taste this or even think of them for that matter, is my grandma. Did I ever mention to you how good my grandma smells? She is almost 80 years old, she uses Channel perfume. So cool.

I’m not sure why I cook traditional Croatian food so seldom here. Maybe because my husband likes Mexican food so much, and he would always eat a burger before a stew made from scratch. What a waste of my willingness to cook, hehe.
I was reminded of this phenomenal dish by Josipa from In Search For Inspiration blog, so thanks to her for that!
I used my own recipe for it since every household in Croatia has their own methods and recipes for it. My mom learned this from my grandma, and she learned it from her mom…

Croatian Stuffed peppers

1 lbs of ground beef
1 lbs of ground pork
1 onion
1 clove of garlic
1 egg
1/4 cup of rice
10 bell peppers, medium size
1 tsp of salt + 1/2 tsp for tomato juice
1/2 tsp of pepper

2 stems of parsley
large can of tomato juice
4 tbsp of flour
1/4 cup of oil + 1 tbsp to saute the onion

Wash and drain peppers. Remove the top from your peppers,clean the inside by removing the seeds and the stems.Wash them and drain well.

Finely chop your onion and saute it on a tablespoon of oil.

In a bowl mix your pork and beef with uncooked rice,salt,pepper and minced garlic clove. Add slightly cooled sauteed onions to it and mix. Add the egg and mix until well combined.

Turn the stove on medium heat and add oil to the large pot that you will be cooking your peppers in. Once hot add flour to it and stir for a few minutes to make a rough that will be a thickener for your tomato juice. Add the tomato juice with 2 cups of water and let it cook for a few minutes until you are ready to put your peppers in.

Fill your peppers with the meat mixture, fill your peppers to the top but make sure you don’t stuff them to dense because the meat with rice will expand a little.
Put whole two stems of parsley in the pot with the tomato and add your peppers. If they are not covered with tomato sauce, add more water. Add salt.

Cook for one to one and a half hour. Serve with fresh bread or mashed potatoes. or both. There is plenty of sauce for both! :o)

I prefer this dish the next day reheated. I also doubled all of my ingredients and I’ve frozen half of it in packages of two for easy delicious lunch or dinner any day of the week.

13 thoughts on “Croatian Stuffed Peppers”

  1. drago mi je da sam ste podsjetila na ovo jelo jer je predobro da ga se rijetko kuha 🙂 sad kad čitam tvoj recept na engleskom skužim neke izraze koji su meni falili kad sam ja pisala, ali nema veze… nadam se da je i moje razumljivo 🙂 paričice izgledaju odlično i najradije bih ih sutra za ručak 🙂

  2. Josipa, ja sam savrseno dobro svatila sve sto si rekla u receptu! hvala jos jednom na inspiraciji…
    Tali, to je jedno i od mojih najdrazih jela, i zapravo ne shvacam zasto gane kuham cesce kad ovi ludi Ameri uvijek imaju paprike!
    Anh, thank you! Maybe you should try making it and enjoy a tiny piece of Croatia yourself! :o)

  3. I actually cook them and then freeze them! :o)
    And Elisa, how exciting, I hope you love it! I am bookmarking your blog about Croatia and can't wait to start reading it, it will be interesting to see your point of view on everything!

  4. I have been making these for years here is a few tips

    I find if you put olive oil and sea salt on the peppers and cook them in the oven for 10-15 min before stuffing it is much better. You don't want them to be over cooked just softened up a bit. I also cut them in half not just the tops off you can get more of the stuffing in them as they are now like a boat make sure to cut the stem out. Cover them with romano cheese and cook until the cheese is brown. Also i put just a pinch of cinniman in the rice meat mixture.

  5. Hey, thank you for your comment! I also make a version of stuffed peppers like that, I really love the cheese on top. This recipe though calls for layering pepper in two to three rows and they cook completely covered in tomato sauce, so I can't put cheese on it. That is also the reason why we don't just half them (which is easier and a great tip) so the filling doesn't come out during the cooking time…
    I will try the cinnamon tip for this recipe next time!

  6. this is actually a turkish dish called dolma (means stuffing) there is also a variety of vine leaves called sarma or yalanci dolma

  7. It really depends on the crowd, how hungry they are (they can eat 1 or two) and the size of your peppers, if they are on the smaller size I would defiantly have 2 per person, if bigger I would play it safe with 1 1/2 per person.

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