The title of this recipe doesn’t tell you much about this dish’s personality; I’m sorry for that. Let me pick up the slack. For starters, we have a steaming valley of tender, baked sweet potato. They spend 45 minutes to an hour baking while you kick back and wait. And of course, whip up the other, equally important component of this dish. After a quick toss in a big, hot skillet, the red pepper and onion are just tender enough and still have their crisp.
Sometimes, these fall into the category of side dish or appetizer. But as you can see by the size of these particular sweet potatoes, they can definitely qualify as a main dish.
When I started writing this post, it was late on Clark’s birthday and we were both in bed alone, 644 miles away from one another. I couldn’t complain, even though I was missing him. He got to spend his 24th back in Brooklyn, and he had what I think was one of his best birthdays ever. We had our own celebration à la seafood dinner in Indianapolis the next day. Shrimp, fancy clothes, food prepared by people other than us, gazing into each other’s eyes, and did I mention? Shrimp. We actually found real, good seafood. In Indiana. Mitchell’s Fish Market is a godsend.
During the blurry lead-up to his departure, we crammed this recipe into our schedule earlier than we expected. Of course, the whole recipe took longer than we expected, and turned out different than we expected, too. What is it they say about the best laid plans?
I have a love-hate relationship with the unexpected. Surprise plans that pop up in the day-to-day keep us on our toes. I like not always knowing what’s coming next and I find that I function better without a rote routine. At the same time, when I have my own plans that have to be changed and “messed up,” it’s hard to not feel stressed. But there is a reason, I think there is always a reason.
On our way to the airport to drop Clark off, the car broke down. Thanks to a father-in-law rescue, Clark made his flight. He arrived in Washington D.C., only to be delayed for 10 hours before landing in New York, at the wrong airport no less. He was dead set on stopping at our favorite sushi place in Brooklyn, but that plan had gone out window by the time they canceled his second flight in D.C.
Meanwhile, I had plenty of leftovers to keep me company.
I usually select the small sweet potatoes; they’re easier for these little hands of mine to manage and chop. But this time, I hunted for the biggest, densest ones in the pile. In hindsight, I could’ve probably gone with something in between small and the-size-of-a-baby-elephant. Out of the 4 that we made, there are still three sitting in the refrigerator, oven-ready for tonight and probably tomorrow night, too. That’s right – between the two of us, Clark and I could only take down one of these. Let’s just say I overestimated.
I have a soft spot for sweet potatoes, so stuffing them with other things I love seems like a brilliant idea. We went back and forth about what would go best with the quirky flavor of sweet potatoes. I understand the appeal in smothering one in salty butter, brown sugar, and melted marshmallows, but I know there’s more than one way to dress a tuber.
Stuffing sweet potatoes isn’t a novel idea, I know, but stuffing them with this fajita-esque blend is unexpected and delightful. The fresh flavors of the sautéed veggies brighten up the potatoes and a generous splash of fresh-squeezed lime juice pulls it all together.
To be honest, those sweet potatoes will probably be in the fridge for a while. Leftovers, FTW.
Easy Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
Baked sweet potatoes stuffed with a healthy, fresh medley of sauteéd vegetables. One of these makes a meal, with plenty of protein and tons of nutrients. Squeeze fresh lime over top for the finishing touch!
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 50 mins
- Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
- Yield: 4
- Category: Main Dish
- 4 sweet potatoes
- olive oil spray
- 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
- 2 red bell peppers [julianned]
- 2 medium sweet onions [thickly sliced]
- 1-15 oz can of black beans
- 1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil [add more when necessary]
- 1-1/4 teaspoons sea salt
- fresh cilantro for garnish
- Preheat oven to 415º.
- Spray sweet potatoes with olive oil and wrap in foil. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 50 minutes or until fork tender.
- While the sweet potatoes are roasting, prepare the onion and red pepper as instructed above. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and pepper and sauté for 5-7 minutes.
- Add black beans, quinoa, sea salt, and more olive oil if necessary. Continue to heat for 3-5 more minutes.
- When the sweet potatoes are done, slice them in half and fill with the stuffing.
- Top with fresh cilantro and a squeeze of lime.