Peppers Are The Gluten-Free Bun Alternative Perfect For Veggie Lovers

When craving one of many sandwich recipes worthy of the dinner table, you probably associate many options with warm and toasted bread in all of its wheat-filled glory. And nowadays, those of us attempting to steer clear of bread products can still enjoy all of those crave-able stacked concoctions thanks to the many gluten-free flour varieties available at your neighborhood supermarket. You have many options if you want to go through the trouble of making homemade sandwich bread or rolls with alternatives such as almond, buckwheat, or rice flour. But what if you're in the mood for a completely different vessel to hold your next cheeseburger or turkey sandwich? Enter the bell pepper.

According to one Mintel survey, 65% of consumers choosing gluten-free foods are doing so for the implied health benefits, rather than Celiac-related complications. Whether you're choosing gluten-free foods for your health or simply because you want a different way of enjoying your favorite sandwich, peppers may be the answer. Not only are bell peppers loaded with vital nutrients, but their signature juicy bite also provides a new texture that might make your next sandwich a little more exciting. 

Before we reveal some important factors to keep in mind when making a pepper sandwich, let's uncover why bell peppers are a tasty alternative to a standard loaf of bread.

Peppers are a fun way to enjoy your next sandwich

Apart from serving as a main component in your next crudité platter or as a tasty addition in taco skillets, there's another way to enjoy bell peppers that's somewhat similar to a platter of stuffed peppers. Raw bell peppers may be a new, exciting way to eat your next sandwich. And the best part is, by doing so you're awarding yourself with an additional serving of nutrient-rich vegetables.

To turn your next helping of tuna salad or chicken burger into a fun gluten-free sandwich, all you need to do is wash and dry a bell pepper of your choosing and remove the stem and inner seeds. Next, cut the pepper into two equal halves, flatten both pieces against a cutting board, and begin to prepare as you would any typical sandwich. Most pepper sandwich alternatives include a spreadable base of cream cheese and condiments before any protein is added. 

If you want to enjoy your next burger with a bell pepper exterior, feel free to grill the pepper halves for a minute or two on each side before adding a hot and juicy meat patty. Alternatively, you can sear the pepper halves in a skillet if you want the pepper to be nice and warm. 

When making a pepper sandwich, pay extra attention to the filling

Now that you know how easy it is to create an appealing gluten-free sandwich, there are some noteworthy elements to remember when using this colorful veggie in lieu of your favorite bread.

Before swapping out the bread in your next salami and cream cheese sandwich, you may want to consider how filling your sandwich is with or without standard bread slices. Because bell peppers are composed of over 90% water and contain very little fat and protein, you need to make sure your sandwich filling has all the necessary components of a proper meal. To make sure you're getting enough of these vital components, consider pairing two protein sources, such as deli turkey and hard-boiled egg slices. If you're looking for filling spreadable options, try adding a smear of refried beans, hummus, or guacamole before adding a freshly cooked burger or deli meat stack. By doing so, you're not only upping your veggie intake, thanks to your newfound bell pepper bun, but you're also warding off early hunger with extra protein and fat.

Beyond that, be mindful when choosing your bell pepper. Green peppers have a sharper flavor; if you're after a milder, sweeter taste, choose a yellow, orange, or red bell pepper. Regardless of your reasoning for wanting to try more gluten-free alternatives, bell peppers are a fun and easy way to upgrade sandwiches.