These ultra delicious Jalapeno Popper Appetizers disappear within moments of being served! Creamy, cheesy, wrapped with crispy chewy bacon, its A TRIPLE FLAVOR BOMB! Just make ahead and bake. Its the best part of the party!
Jalapeno Popper Appetizers are fresh jalapeños which have been stuffed with cheese, wrapped in bacon, then baked to creamy, cheesy, crisp perfection. Commonly served in pubs and bars, this decadent treat is one of the top appetizers served during barbeques, game days and the Super Bowl.
Why make these Jalapeño Poppers?
With summer approaching, everyone needs an easy appetizer for game days, impromptu parties, lazy days on the beach – a reliable crowd pleaser that works every time! There are lots of delicious appetizers out there – but I have to tell you – Jalapeño Poppers make me want to sing a happy song – I love eating them and my family just can’t get enough!
Here is why you will love making these:
- QUICK AND EASY – Literally mix, fill and bake! This Jalapeño Popper recipe is one of the easiest appetizers to make. Prep takes about 10 minutes – the oven does the rest!
- MAKE AHEAD – BAKE WHEN READY -one of the key reasons why this is one of the top appetizer recipes for busy home cooks. Stuff and wrap the jalapeños and store in the refrigerator, When you are ready, simply pop them into the oven and serve freshly baked brown and bubbly jalapeño poppers!
- EASY TO FIND INGREDIENTS – no hunting around in supermarkets to find exotic ingredients – you just need four ingredients and all four are easily available at your local grocery store.
- TRIPLE FLAVOR BOMB – (1) Creamy Cheese? Check! (2) Crisp and Bacon-y? Check! (3) Cheesy and Bubbly? Check!
- ULTIMATE GAME DAY APPETIZER – These Jalapeno Popper Appetizers are tried and tested – everyone loves them. They are a perfect finger food and pair perfectly with icy cold beer.
- BAKED NOT FRIED – While restaurant Jalapeño Poppers are typically breaded and cooked in a deep fryer, these jalapeño poppers are baked. I prefer the baked version because the cheese gets bubbly and brown.
Tips for making the best Jalapeño Poppers
- USE A SPOON to remove the seeds and membranes from the jalapeños.
- Fresh jalapeños can be difficult to work with especially if you happen to buy particularly hot jalapenos. It helps to WEAR DISPOSABLE GLOVES but if you don’t have any, the second best thing is to cover your hands with plastic bags or cooking oil to protect your skin.
- DON’T OVERSTUFF THE JALAPENOS WITH CHEESE – the cheese does bubble up and will overflow.
- BAKE THE JALAPENO POPPERS ON A WIRE RACK placed on top of an aluminum foil lined baking sheet so that the bacon and jalapeños crisp up beautifully and are not sitting in bacon grease. The foil liner makes clean up a breeze. If you do not have a wire rack simply place the jalapeños poppers on a paper towel to soak up any excess oil.
- TOOTHPICK ARE HELPFUL TO SECURE THE BACON – especially if the bacon keeps falling off.
- FRESHLY GRATED CHEESE MELTS BETTER -some pre-packaged cheeses contain chemicals which prevent the cheese from melting well.
Jalapeno Popper Appetizers are made of four simple ingredients: fresh jalapenos, sharp cheddar, cream cheese and bacon. Each popper is wrapped with thick cut bacon which is crisped to perfection.
- In this recipe, the cheese mixture is made up of cream cheese and freshly shredded sharp cheddar cheese. The cream cheese is a perfect neutral base because it melts into a thick, creamy sauce during the baking process. The shredded cheddar adds a sharp pungent flavor. You can easily add other cheeses or meats . For example, pepper jack cheese, crab meat and minced shrimp work really well. Feel free to be creative!
- Fresh jalapeño peppers are critical to this recipe. Look for Jalapeño peppers which are shiny, fresh and firm, preferably about 3 inches long, with no blemishes. To prepare keep the stem on and slice in half lengthwise. I like keeping the stem because it not only looks nice but helps ensures that the creamy filling does not overflow into the baking pan.
- I like using thick cut bacon because it gives a meatier chew. However, this is just a matter of preference – thin-cut bacon also works very well with this recipe. The length of the bacon strip will depend on the size of the jalapeño – I usually slice a strip in half. If you prefer not to eat pork, simply omit the bacon or use turkey bacon – just adjust the cooking time as it can vary from brand to brand.
How to safely slice and gut a Jalapeño
Most of the jalapeños that I buy from my local grocery store are pretty mild but every now and then I get a super hot, spicy jalapeño batch which makes my eyes water and skin burn right after the first slice. Since its a little tricky to tell which jalapeños are hotter than others, its a good idea to follow the following steps just to be safe.
Step One: Protect your hands – The best way to protect your hangs is to wear disposable gloves. If you don’t have any handy you can cover your hands by slipping on a plastic bag over each hand or alternatively coat your hands with vegetable oil.
Step Two: Slice the jalapeno lengthwise in half. Keep the stalk on – do not slice off the tip of the stalk at the end because you need the halved c to form a ‘bowl’ so the cheese does not overflow.
Step Three: Scoop out the seeds and membrane – A teaspoon works best and it will help you scrape away the membrane at one go. Do not use your finger or nails. Trust me. Just use the spoon.
Step Four: Rinse the jalapenos if you don’t like heat at all -Rinsing reduces the heat dramatically because any bits of membrane and seeds are washed away.
When you have finished working with the jalapeños wash your hands thoroughly with warm soapy water. Try not to touch your eyes for several hours after working with jalapeño peppers.
How to make baked Jalapeño Poppers in the oven
Step One: Preheat oven to 400°F
Step Two: Make the mix and stuff the peppers – 4 PARTS
PART 1 of 4: Mix the cream cheese and cheddar cheese together.
PART 2 of 4: Stuff each jalapeño half with the cream cheese mixture.
PART 3 of 4: Wrap each half with a slice of bacon.
PART 4 of 4: Arrange the bacon wrapped jalapeño poppers in a single layer on a rack placed on a baking sheet. The rack ensures that the bacon is elevated so that all sides of the bacon cook to crispy perfection.
Step Three: Bake in the oven – about 30 minutes until the bacon is crispy and the cheese is golden brown.
Grilling Jalapeño Poppers
The smoky flavor from grilling takes jalapeño poppers up to the next level. Here is how you do it:
- Assemble the Jalapeño Poppers as described in the recipe.
- Heat the grill to medium high heat.
- Arrange the Jalapeño Poppers perpendicularly to the grates on the grill. The cut side should be up.
- Cover the grill and cook for about 10- 15 minutes. The Jalapeño Poppers are done when the cheese melts and the jalapeno’s are seared on the bottom and cooked through.
What to eat with Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers
- Dip in chunky blue cheese sauce.
- Add an Asian twist by serving with 5 minute Nuoc Cham – Vietnamese Dipping Fish Sauce.
- Dunk in Buffalo Chicken Dip.
- Serve with Buffalo Wings, potato chips, tortilla chips and cold icy beer!
- For a perfect pairing to this incredible appetizer, serve cold, refreshing Shemai – Creamy Vermicelli in Sweet Rose Infused Cream. Its one of those perfect combinations that needs to be tasted to be believed!
How long do Jalapeno Popper Appetizers last?
I have never had Jalapeño Popper leftovers. However in the event say, that you want to bake them in advance, let the poppers cool to room temperature then store them in an airtight container. The stuffed jalapeño poppers will last for about 3 days.
How do you re-heat Jalapeño Poppers?
- Microwave – reheat small batches of Jalapeño poppers in the microwave. It heats up really fast and can explode so start with about 20 seconds.
- Oven – bake at 350°F for about 20 minutes or until the Jalapeño Poppers are heated all the way through.
- For a seafood version mix canned crab meat, minced shrimp into cheesy filling
- Add a squeeze of lemon juice, a half teaspoon of garlic powder and a little minced cilantro to the cheese mixture
- Cook the bacon separately and crumble on top of the cheese mix
- Add your favorite chopped sausage and sliced green onionS to the cheese mix
- Add canned corn to the cheese mix for pops of sweet.
You can assemble the Jalapeno Popper Appetizers up to day ahead. Simply bake them in the oven the next day when you are ready to serve them.
Are Jalapeno Poppers spicy?
It depends – some jalapeño poppers are just hotter than others and you really won’t know until you bite into them.
Since the heat is actually concentrated in the seeds and the membranes scooping them out really helps. Rinsing after removing the seeds and membrane also help. I do like a little heat so I don’t rinse the jalapenos after removing the membrane and seeds.
The melted cheese filling and bacon help balance out the heat of the pepper. Dipping the Jalapeño Popper Appetizer in ranch dressing makes a material difference in reducing the heat.
Dairy is the solution to heat from overly hot jalapeño poppers. Almost anything dairy will reduce the burn – ranging from milk, sour cream and yoghurt to the ultimate burn reducer – ice cream (all flavors!).
Are these Jalapeno Popper Appetizers Keto Friendly?
With only 2.7 grams of carbs or 1.6 net grams of carbs per serving – this recipe is a great appetizer for those looking for a keto friendly appetizers! This jalapeno popper recipe has 216 calories.
Finally, if you make this recipe
I’d love to hear how it went – please leave a comment and rate this recipe. Above all, I love hearing from all of you and will do my best to answer each and every comment!
Try these other delicious appetizers
Keto Buffalo Chicken Wings – Unbelievably easy to make, these keto chicken wings are baked to crispy perfection then smothered with an OMG IT’S SO TASTY buffalo glaze. The wings take only a few minutes to prep – the oven does the rest.
Chicken & Shrimp Fried Wontons – These fried wontons are stuffed with tasty chicken and shrimp and are far better than your average Chinese restaurant wontons. You’ve never had a fried wonton until you’ve tried a homemade one!
Quick & Crunchy Shrimp Tacos – A scrumptious, crowd pleasing canapé perfect for entertaining on the spur of the moment. Made with wonton wrappers and baked until golden, each bite has a very satisfying, signature crunch followed by an explosion of creamy avocado, sweet grape tomato, spicy shrimp and crunchy wonton.
Easy Jalapeno Popper Appetizers
- 4 ounces cream cheese
- 1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese shredded
- 12 jalapeno peppers halved lengthwise, seeds and membranes removed
- 6 slices thick cut bacon sliced in half
- Preheat oven to 400°F
- Mix cream cheese and cheddar cheese together.
- Fill each jalapeno half with the cheese mixture.
- Wrap each half with a slice of bacon.
- Arrange the bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers on a rack and place on an aluminum foil lined baking sheet.
- Bake in the oven until the bacon is crispy and the cheese is slightly brown and bubbly – about 30-35 minutes.
- This recipe yields approximately 6 servings. The nutrition information has been calculated using an online recipe nutrition calculator and is intended for informational purposes only and should be used as a general guideline. If the nutrition information is important to you, you should independently verify it using your preferred tool.