Instant Pot unstuffed peppers is a zesty recipe that’s easy to make and can be on the table in about 30 minutes!

Loaded with seasoned ground beef, diced peppers, onions, rice, and lots of melty cheese, this hearty and healthy recipe has all the flavor and none of the fuss of stuffed peppers!

Why crockpot when you can Instant Pot in less than half the time?

bowl of Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers with cheese on top

Easy Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers

  • Leave it to the Instant Pot to get flavorful and filling main dishes on the table in minutes, perfect for those busy weeknights!
  • Healthy and budget-friendly, unstuffed peppers are an easy recipe for using up those leftover veggies in the refrigerator!
  • Unlike traditional stuffed peppers, which require hollowing out the peppers and stuffing them with a mixture, unstuffed peppers are much easier and quicker to prepare.
  • Unstuffed peppers offer versatile flavor combinations and customization. Experiment with different fillings, spices, and ingredients, and tailor the dish to your taste preferences.
broth , yellow pepper , tomatoes , beef , tomato paste , cheese , onion , rice , greep pepper , salt and pepper with labels to make Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers

Ingredients and Variations

Vegetables: Yellow and green peppers offer a colorful contrast with the tomatoes, but why stop there? Toss in some mushrooms, shredded cabbage, sliced zucchini, corn, or a whole bag of frozen veggies – no need to thaw!

Meat: Ground chicken, turkey, or sausage can be used in place of ground beef. Or leave out the meat and add drained black beans or cubes of tofu to replace the meat, and for a low-carb version replace the meat with bite-sized broccoli or cauliflower florets!

Rice: Minute rice is fast and foolproof, but you can use cauliflower rice for a keto version, brown rice for more fiber, or even protein-rich quinoa. Adjust cook times, as necessary.

Fun Fact!

Beans with rice make a complete protein just like meat!

ingredients in pot to make Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers

How to Make Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers

This dish is so easy and tasty, why not double the recipe and freeze a batch for future soups and casseroles?

  1. Saute beef and onion in the Instant Pot (as described in the recipe below).
  2. Add remaining ingredients (except cheese), cover, and cook on manual pressure for 12 minutes.
  3. Manually release the pressure, stir, and serve with shredded cheese.
taking a scoop of Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers out of the pot

What Goes With Unstuffed Peppers?

Unstuffed peppers are a full-meal deal on their own with a savory combination of meat, veggies, and rice.

Keep it simple with a bright and tangy salad like this kale salad or this creamy cucumber dill salad. Even a side of sweet pickles will add balance to all the flavors. Don’t forget a thick slice of sourdough soda bread to sop up those savory juices!

Keep unstuffed peppers on the warm setting and serve with bowls of toppings such as diced avocado or tomato, sour cream or hot sauce, and of course shredded cheese. Family and guests can help themselves!

plated Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers

Storing Leftovers

  • Unstuffed peppers taste even better the next day as school or workday lunches throughout the week!
  • Keep leftover unstuffed cabbage in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days and freeze in zippered bags for up to two months.
  • Reheat in a skillet on the stovetop on medium heat or turn leftovers into stuffed pepper soup, or spread leftovers into a casserole dish and bake in the oven with fresh cheese on top for a whole new meal!
Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers on a spoon

Other Easy Instant Pot Meals!

bowl of Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers with cheese on top
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Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers

Enjoy the flavors of stuffed peppers with this Instant Pot Unstuffed Peppers recipe.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Bring To Pressure 5 minutes
Total Time 32 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Author Candace Hollas



  • 1 pound ground beef
  • ½ onion chopped
  • 28 ounces canned diced tomatoes
  • cup beef broth
  • 1 cup uncooked converted rice such as Minute Rice
  • ounces tomato paste 1 small can
  • 1 green pepper chopped in ½-1 inch pieces*
  • 1 yellow pepper chopped in ½-1 inch pieces* (or red or orange)
  • 1-1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt** or to taste
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or to taste
  • ¼ cup mozzarella cheese shredded, optional for serving
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese shredded, optional for serving


  • Set Instant Pot to 'saute'. When hot, ddd ground beef and onion, then cook until beef is browned, about 5 minutes. Break meat up with a meat chopper or wooden spoon.
  • Add diced tomatoes, beef broth, rice, tomato paste, peppers, salt**, and pepper. 
  • Set Instant Pot on manual pressure for 12 minutes. After cooking is complete, manually release the pressure.
  • Dish up in a bowl or plate, top with cheeses if desired, and serve.


  • *cut peppers into ½ inch pieces for a soft textured pepper, or 1 inch pieces for more firm peppers.
  • Add 1-2 additional peppers of any color if you would like more peppers
  • **I suggest adding 1 teaspoon of salt, and adding more after cooking if desired.
  • For thicker unstuffed peppers, turn Instant Pot to saute. Make a slurry with 1 Tablespoon each cornstarch and water in a small bowl. Add 1 teaspoon of the slurry at a time to the Instant Pot and stir after each addition until it reaches desired consistency.
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Nutrition Information

Calories: 250 | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 53mg | Sodium: 1348mg | Potassium: 910mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 729IU | Vitamin C: 71mg | Calcium: 144mg | Iron: 5mg

Nutrition information does not include optional ingredients or garnish and is an estimate. It may change based on actual ingredients and cooking methods used.

Course Main Course
Cuisine American

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About the author

I am a wife, mother of two, and professional accountant. I love fantastic food, and it is so often the center of our lives, from everyday dinner, to family gatherings, and special evenings at fabulous restaurants. I have always loved cooking and baking, with my mom and grandma, and now, with my daughter and son. I love trying new recipes while enjoying my favorites too. I’m so happy to share them with you.
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