Foodie Fun: Jack-o'-Lantern Stuffed Peppers are Scarily Delicious

Wow your kids with this festive spooky dinner

By Leah Spencer, publisher of Macaroni KID Takoma Park - Silver Spring, Md. October 6, 2023

I love to make Jack-o'-Lantern Stuffed Peppers for my kids every Halloween season. This recipe is lots of fun, but not too intensive, and is a great way to put a Halloween spin on a classic meal. Plus, Jack-o'-Lantern Stuffed Peppers are an easy way to get your kids to eat something they otherwise might not want to try.

Some tips for making Jack-o'-Lantern Stuffed Peppers:

When choosing peppers, look for orange peppers with four bumps or lobes on the bottom rather than three so that the peppers stand up easier. You can also trim the bottom of the pepper so it stands up straight.

Use rice or any of your family's favorite grains or grain blends for stuffing for these Jack-o'-Lantern Stuffed Peppers. I used a harvest grain mixture with Israeli couscous, quinoa, and other assorted grains.

At Macaroni KID, we skip the fluff and get straight to the good stuff. No need to scroll through pages of unnecessary content — our recipes are easy to find. Now let's get cooking!

Jack-o'-Lantern Stuffed Peppers

Serves 4


  • 1 cup rice or grain mixture
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 4 orange bell peppers
  • 8 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • olive oil and cooking spray
  • salt and pepper to taste


1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

2. Cook the rice or grain mixture according to the package instructions.

3. While grains cook, dice the onion.

4. Add olive oil to a large sauté pan, and once the pan is hot, add the onions. Cook onions until soft, about 5 minutes.

5. Add beef to pan with onions and cook until the meat is brown. Season with salt and pepper.

Leah Spencer

6. While the beef is browning, use a SHARP paring knife to cut the tops off your peppers. Set the tops aside and remove the seeds and core. Then, use the same knife to cut jack-o-lantern faces on the peppers. Lightly oil the peppers and pepper tops with olive oil or cooking spray and then put them into an oven-safe baking dish.

7. Once the meat is cooked, drain off any excess grease and then add the tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and the rice or grains to the pan. Mix it all together, and then fill each pepper to the top with the beef and grain mixture.

8. Bake the stuffed peppers in the oven for 20 minutes.

9. Remove the peppers from the oven, add cheese to the top of each pepper, and return to the oven for 10-15 more minutes.

10. Remove the peppers from the oven and let them cool for a few minutes. Put the tops back on the jack-o'-lantern and enjoy your spooky Halloween dinner!

 Radu Bercan | Canva

Leah Spencer is the publisher of Macaroni KID Takoma Park - Silver Spring, Md.