Entree

Stuffed Poblano Peppers With Walnut Sauce

These stuffed poblano peppers with walnut sauce are beautiful and festive! The sweet and smokey poblano is stuffed with ground meat, dried fruit, and warm spices and covered with a velvety rich walnut sauce that adds a touch of elegance to the dish.

When I think of stuffed peppers, I’m reminded of the tasteless green pepper stuffed with meat and rice in a red sauce topped with cheese. It’s not my fave, and I can’t eat a green pepper to this day! There are endless ways to stuff a pepper to suit any craving.

However, my favorite pepper to stuff is the poblano. After years of traveling to Mexico, where my parents lived part-time, I’m close to this little pepper and its uses! I came across this dish called Chiles en Nogada years ago, but I had to put my own spin and tweak a few ingredients.

And… believe it or not, these stuffed peppers are easy to make despite the lengthy ingredient list. I share a few shortcuts from the traditional recipe to keep it simple and approachable. It’s one of my elegance-made-easy favorites!

So, what sets these stuffed poblano peppers apart from all the rest??

The walnut sauce! Who knew? I had never heard of or tried it either! It is simply irresistible, and the nuttiness pairs perfectly with the pepper and stuffing.

Okay, enough from me! I hope you give them a try. They are a must-try recipe for anyone looking to spice up their dinner routine or have a little fiesta. And don’t forget my Hibiscus Margaritas! They are so refreshing!

Ingredient Notes And Substitutions

Poblano Peppers ~ also called pasilla peppers, are typically mild regarding the heat level. You can either stuff a whole pepper or slice and stuff each half. I suggest a smaller pepper to stuff and a larger one to slice in half.

Ground chicken ~ For this recipe, I used chicken, but any ground meat, such as turkey, pork, or beef, works excellent. I will sometimes use a combination of meats, which are also super tasty!

Spices ~ cinnamon, cumin, coriander, and chile powder.

Farro ~ is my go-to grain. I love the chewy texture and health benefits, but you could substitute any rice or leave it out altogether.

Walnut Sauce

Walnuts ~ Normally, walnuts are shelled (peeled), which, as you can imagine, can be a little time-consuming. I skip this part and only boil them. I like it better, as it adds more flavor and is a bit more rustic. Plus, it saves time!

Sour cream ~ for the walnut sauce. I use full fat, but a light variety would also work. I suggest not using fat-free, or you will lose some of the taste and texture of this rich sauce.

Half and half ~ needed to thin the mixture and add creaminess. Heavy cream

Sugar & cinnamon ~ balance out the tanginess while adding warmth.

Skin being pulled off a roasted poblano

Make Ahead And Storage For

You can prepare these peppers in advance for no fuss and stress-free entertaining. The filling, walnut sauce, and roasted chiles can be prepared the day before or up to two days before.

Prepare the stuffed poblano peppers as instructed in the recipe, but stop before baking them. Once the peppers are stuffed, you can cover the baking dish tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and refrigerate them for up to 24 hours before baking.

When you’re ready to serve, preheat your oven and bake the stuffed peppers according to the recipe instructions. If the peppers are cold from the refrigerator, you may need to add a few extra minutes to the baking time.

For the walnut sauce, blend the sauce, transfer it to an airtight container, and refrigerate until ready to use. Before serving, gently reheat the sauce in a saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally, until warmed through. If it has thickened in the fridge, add a splash of chicken broth or cream to thin it out.

Variations For These Stuffed Poblano Peppers With Walnut Sauce

  • Mix in other veggies to suit your taste or what’s in season.
  • Make it vegetarian, with assorted grains and meatless crumbles.
  • Toss in various proteins such as shrimp, cubed chicken, pork, or beef. I make a delicious cheesy version with shrimp, farro, and chorizo. Soon to come!

How To Make These Stuffed Poblano Peppers With Walnut Sauce

  1. Start by roasting and prepping the chilies. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place the baking tray lined with foil in the upper third of your oven; as the peppers blister and blacken, rotate them until all sides are slightly charred. When cooled, peel the skin off gently.
  2. Now open up the pepper by using a sharp knife and cut a slit ( not all the way through), starting from the stem to about an inch from the bottom. You are creating a large pocket for the stuffing. Take a spoon and gently scrape out the seeds. I also like to use a paper towel to soak up any liquid inside the pepper.
  3. Make the filling. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil. Add the onions and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the chicken until just browned, then add the white wine and dried fruit and simmer for about 5 minutes.
  4. Stuff the peppers, and bake for 15 minutes to heat through. Top with walnut sauce, raspberries, and chopped cilantro or parsley
  5. Make the walnut sauce. Add water to a small pot and heat until boiling. Add walnuts and cook for about 5 minutes. Drain and place in blender. Add the sour cream, milk, and sugar to the blender. Blend until the walnuts are incorporated into the sauce and the sauce is smooth.
Walnut sauce being pored over the stuffed poblanos.
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Stuffed Poblano Peppers With Walnut Sauce


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  • Author: Teri Wallingford
  • Total Time: 30 to 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x

Description

This authentic and sophisticated Mexican dish is beautiful and festive! The sweet and smokey poblano is stuffed with ground meat, dried fruit, and warm spices and covered with a velvety rich walnut sauce that adds a touch of elegance to the dish.


Ingredients

Units Scale

For the peppers

  • 4 medium poblano peppers. (This will serve 4 people, or slice them in half to serve 8. I would suggest selecting larger peppers if you are going to be slicing them in half )
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound ground chicken, turkey, beef or pork. ( I sometimes combine 2 different meats )
  • 1/2 medium onion finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup assorted dried fruit, cut into small chunks
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine or chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup cooked farro
  • raspberries or pomegranates for garnish. Optional

For the walnut sauce

  • 1 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup whole milk, or half and half
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon


Instructions

For the peppers

  1. Start by roasting the chilies. Preheat the oven to 424 degrees F. Place the baking tray lined with foil in the upper third of your oven; as the peppers blister and blacken, rotate them until all sides are slightly charred. You can do this over an open flame, such as on a burner or bar b que. Whichever way you choose, keep an eye on them, as it will only take about 7 to 10 minutes.
  2. When you have roasted the chiles, cover them with a piece of foil to steam them for about 5 minutes. This will help the skin come off more easily. When cooled, peel the skin off gently; otherwise, you may tear the pepper.
  3. Now open up the pepper by using a sharp knife and cut a slit ( not all the way through), starting from the stem to about an inch from the bottom. You are creating a large pocket for the stuffing. Take a spoon and gently scrape out the seeds. I also like to use a paper towel to soak up any liquid inside the pepper. 

For the filling

  1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil. Add the onions and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  2. Add the chicken and cook until just browned. Add the cinnamon, chili powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. Mix well, then add the white wine and dried fruit and simmer for about 5 minutes. Set aside.

For the walnut sauce

  1. Add water to a small pot and heat until boiling. Add walnuts and cook for about 5 minutes. Drain and place in a blender.
  2. Add the sour cream, milk, cinnamon, and salt to the blender. Blend until the walnuts are incorporated into the sauce, and it is smooth. Adjust salt and cinnamon to taste. Store in an airtight container until ready to use.
  3. Reheat the sauce in a microwave prior to pouring over the poblanos. Note, the sauce will thicken as it cools.

Serve & Enjoy

  1. Once the peppers have heated through, top with the walnut sauce..be generous! Garnish with raspberries, chopped strawberries or pomegranates, and cilantro.

Notes

MAKE AHEAD

  • Prepare the stuffed poblano peppers as instructed in the recipe, but stop before baking them. Once the peppers are stuffed, you can cover the baking dish tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and refrigerate them for up to 24 hours before baking. Do not add walnut sauce and raspberries until ready to serve.
  • When you’re ready to serve, preheat your oven and bake the stuffed peppers according to the recipe instructions. If the peppers are cold from the refrigerator, you may need to add a few extra minutes to the baking time.
  • For the walnut sauce, blend the sauce, transfer it to an airtight container, and refrigerate until ready to use. Before serving, gently reheat the sauce in a saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally, until warmed through. If it has thickened in the fridge, add a splash of chicken broth or cream to thin it out.
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Mexican

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