WGN Entertainment Reporter Dean Richards is celebrating Cinco de Mayo a little earlier with his recipe for stuffed poblano peppers.


  • ½ cup white rice
  • 4 poblano peppers
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion (diced)
  • 4 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 8 ounces lean ground beef (or substitute shredded chicken, diced shrimp or roasted veggies) 
  • 3 Tablespoons dried currants
  • 3 Tablespoons roasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

Lime Crema

  • 1/2 cup Mexican crema (or sour cream)
  • 1 lime (juiced)
  • 1/2 cup cilantro (chopped (divided))


Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

In a small pot, combine the rice, 1 cup of water and a big pinch of salt. Bring to a boil then cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer 15 minutes. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork. Set aside. 

Place poblano peppers on a sheet pan. Roast in the oven for 10-15 minutes, or until the skin is browned and blistered. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool, leaving the oven on. When cool enough to handle, make a lengthwise slit in each pepper and remove and discard the ribs and seeds.

While the peppers cool, in a large skillet, heat oil on medium-high until hot. Add garlic and onion. Cook, stirring frequently, 2-3 minutes, until softened. 

Stir in the tomato paste and cumin. Cook, 2-3 minutes. 

Add ground beef (or protein or choice.)   Cook, breaking the meat apart with a spoon, until cooked through. 

Stir in the currants, pepitas and cooked rice. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Stuff each pepper with the filling. Bake 4 to 6 minutes, or until heated through. Remove from the oven.

While the peppers bake, in a small bowl, combine Mexican crema, lime juice, half the cilantro and 1 tablespoon of water. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Drizzle the peppers with lime crema and sprinkle with remaining cilantro. 

See past recipes from Dean on his cooking page.

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