I’ve been cooking with green bell peppers for many years and I’ve always loved the aroma and flavor that came out of this uniquely shaped little wonder. I never really gave much attention to the other colors and what they had to offer until recently. I also must sadly admit that I didn’t know that the different colors were the results of the peppers being harvested at different stages of ripeness! lol Now that I have been ‘veggicated’, I can’t get enough of these beautiful bells.
Bell peppers are a fruit from the species Capsicum Annuum. Although culinarily they are considered a vegetable, due to their many uses. The most common colors that are typically found in the produce section are the green, red, yellow and orange varieties. The least common varieties include purple and white. Regardless of the color, these little gems add beautiful color, flavor and nutrition to any dish. Each color provides a distinct difference in taste and nutritional value. Let’s explore some of those values and ways that we can add them to our diet.
Bell peppers, especially red, are packed with the Vitamin C, an essential nutrient for a healthy immune system and for the formation of Collagen. One pepper can provide up to 169% of the recommended daily value of vitamin C. It also provides vitamins A, E, B6 and K1. With so many vitamins packed into one berry, it’s an excellent source for a healthy dose of antioxidants. Antioxidants help protect our cells from free radical damage. The more colorful the pepper, the more nutrient dense they are. The red ones tend to be the most nutritious, due to the fact that they remain on the vine the longest and are harvested at their peak ripeness.
Enjoy them raw with a little sea salt and fresh ground pepper or add them to a salad with mixed greens. You’ll love the crisp, sweet, and refreshing taste. One of my favorite ways to enjoy all colors is in a vegetable stir fry served with curry brown rice. They can also be stuffed with your favorite ingredients and baked for a delicious and nutritious entree. There are so many ways to enjoy bell peppers either cooked or raw. So go ahead and give them a try, your mouth and body will thank you for it!
What’s your favorite way to enjoy bell peppers. Let me know in the comments. I’ll try it and if I love it, I may add it to my Recipe Corner!
Eat, Drink and Be well.
Note: The content of this post is for informational purposes only and is not intended for medical or nutritional advice.