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Cajun Stuffed Peppers with Crawfish

Cajun Stuffed Bell Peppers with crawfish, savory stuffing made with Louisiana crawfish tails and the Trinity tightened up with breadcrumbs, then stuffed into fresh, sweet bell peppers and baked to a golden brown. Out of this world. 
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr 10 mins
Waiting Time10 mins
Total Time1 hr 35 mins
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Cajun
Keyword: cajun stuffed peppers
Servings: 8 Servings
Calories: 187kcal

Here's What You Need

  • 4 large bell peppers for stuffing
  • 4 tablespoons butter plus some for the tops
  • 2 pounds crawfish tails
  • 2 cups yellow onions finely chopped, 2 medium
  • ½ cup celery finely chopped, about 1 stalk
  • ½ cup bell pepper finely chopped, about ½ large pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 1 cup green onions chopped, about 1 bunch
  • 1 cups seasoned breadcrumbs plus some for the tops
  • 1 cup crawfish or chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Herb and Spice Blend

  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • ½ teaspoon thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon Creole seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

Here's What You Do

Prepare the ingredients

  • Finely chop about ⅓ of the crawfish tails and combine them with the whole tails. Mix in about 1 tablespoon of Creole seasoning and set aside.
  • Finely chop the Trinity, garlic and green onions. Measure the remaining ingredients. Mix the Herb and Spice Blend in a small bowl.
  • Slice 4 bell peppers in half and parboil for about 2 minutes, soak in an ice bath for about 5 minutes, then set on a cooling rack, cut side down to drain.

For the stuffing

  • In a heavy-bottomed dutch oven or cast iron frying pan, melt the butter over medium heat. When bubbling, add the trinity and saute until starting to brown, about 8 minutes.
  • Add the garlic and about ½ of the Herb and Spice Blend and the Bay leaf and saute for a couple of minutes, until aromatic.
  • Add the stock and bring to a low simmer until reduced by about ½ (about 10 minutes).
  • Mix in the crawfish tails, green onions, Worcestershire sauce and the remaining Herb and Spice Blend. Stir well and let simmer for about 10 minutes until the liquid has reduced.
  • Add the bread crumbs and mix well to combine all the ingredients. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and cover. Let this sit so the breadcrumbs absorb all the liquid and it is a moist stuffing-like consistency, about 10 minutes.
  • Remove the bay leaf and stuff the filling into the bell pepper halves, making sure to push the filling into all the voids.
  • Sprinkle seasoned bread crumbs on top and place a small tab of butter (about ¼ tablespoon) on top of each one.
  • Lightly coat the bottom of a baking dish with vegetable oil or non-stick cooking spray.
  • Place the stuffed peppers in the prepared baking dish, add about ¼ inch of water in the bottom and bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for about 30 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.

Notes

I recommend only fresh or frozen Louisiana crawfish. Crawfish tail meat will have some crawfish “fat” on them and this fat will begin to go rancid within 6 months. Not only are Louisiana crawfish plump and sweet, but they also get to the market much faster than crawfish produced overseas, usually in China. Frozen Louisiana crawfish tails are ready to go right out of the pack, their “fat” will add a sweet depth of flavor, but imported Crawfish need to be rinsed to remove their fat. Without rinsing, these imported crawfish tails will taste a little off. A great online source for Louisiana crawfish tail meat is The Cajun Grocer. I have no affiliation with The Cajun Grocer, but I like to recommend good vendors.
Does the color of the pepper matter?
Bell Peppers, categorized as Sweet Peppers, are very mild in flavor and have no heat whatsoever, which makes them perfect for stuffing as they accent the flavor of the filling but do not take it over. There are over 60 varieties of bell peppers and one pepper bush will produce green, yellow and red fruit depending upon the level of ripeness-the green version is most immature, followed by the yellow and the red being the ripest and sweetest. Honestly, it is almost impossible to tell the difference in the flavor.
Are Peppers good for you?
Bell Peppers are a good source of Vitamin A and C, potassium, folic acid and fiber. The red bell pepper does have a much greater source of beta-carotene and Vitamin C than the green pepper.
Can I eat the pepper?
Yes, the pepper can be eaten right along with the stuffing. They can also be eaten raw.
Substitutes?
You can substitute shrimp or crab for the crawfish. Use other types of pepper for stuffing, such as a poblano. Any color bell pepper can be used.
How long will stuffed peppers last in the refrigerator?
Leftover stuffed peppers can be kept in the refrigerator for 5 or 6 days if they are wrapped airtight. They may be reheated in a microwave or in a 350-degree oven until they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. This usually takes about 20 minutes.
Can Stuffed Peppers be frozen?
Leftover stuffed peppers can also be frozen for up to 6 months, again if they are in an airtight container. You can freeze them individually or in a batch. The best practice is to place the completely cooled stuffed peppers on a baking sheet in the freezer for about 90 minutes until frozen. Then wrap each pepper in plastic wrap and place them in a freezer bag. The best method is to take the individually frozen stuffed pepper and place it in a vacuum-sealed bag. When you are ready to enjoy the peppers, you can defrost them in the refrigerator overnight, or place them in a baking dish in a cold oven set to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. As the oven heats, the peppers will start to gradually defrost. Bake them until the internal temperature is 165 degrees, which will take 30 to 40 minutes.

Nutrition

Calories: 187kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 35mg | Sodium: 631mg | Potassium: 436mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 3483IU | Vitamin C: 124mg | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 2mg

This recipe came from www.firstyouhaveabeer.com.