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Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers are the perfect appetizer for game day or any party! Fill fresh jalapenos with a cream cheese, bacon filling and top with crispy breadcrumbs. They’re easy to make and perfect to feed a crowd!
Jalapenos Poppers are easily the best appetizer for any occasion – they are hand-held, two-bite snacks that have crispy, creamy, spicy, and savory all rolled into a neat little package.
Ingredients for Spicy Jalapeno Poppers
All you need are some fresh jalapenos and some simple ingredients for the cheesy filling to make a crowd-pleasing game day snack! Here’s what you need:
- Jalapeno Peppers – Pick peppers that are bright green and firm without any soft spots. You’ll want peppers that are medium-sized so there is room for the cheese filling.
- Cream Cheese – Use brick-style cream cheese, not the spreadable kind in a tub.
- Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese – You can swap in a Mexican blend shredded cheese or another cheese of choice.
- Bacon – You’ll cook this to a crisp and then finely chop up to use in both the filling and sprinkled on top of the poppers. You can also buy the pre-crumbled bacon in a jar to really speed up the prep.
- Green Onions – also called scallions or spring onions.
- Fresh Parsley
- Garlic – Using a fresh clove that you finely mince by hand is best.
- Panko Breadcrumbs – You can swap in regular breadcrumbs or even Italian seasoned breadcrumbs.
- Butter – Melted to make the crispy breadcrumb topping.
- Salt and Pepper
How to Make Milder Poppers for Picky Eaters
Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers are not overly spicy since we remove the ribs and seeds, however, they do still have a mild kick. If you have picky eaters that can’t tolerate any spice, you can substitute mini bell peppers for the jalapenos. The recipe steps remain the same but the results are sweeter without spice.
Step by Step Instructions
Prep – Start by preheating the oven and line a baking sheet with foil. Spray the foil well with nonstick cooking spray
Cut the Peppers – Slice the jalapeno peppers in half lengthwise. Make sure to leave the stems intact. Remove the white ribs and seeds – you can use a spoon to scrape them out. Place the pepper halves cut side up on the baking sheet.
Make the Filling – In a bowl, mix together the softened cream cheese, shredded cheese, ⅔ of the chopped crispy bacon, ⅔ of the sliced green onions, parsley, and garlic.
Fill the Jalapeno Peppers – Spoon the cream cheese mixture into the pepper halves and spread to fill each popper.
Breadcrumb Topping – Mix together the breadcrumbs, melted butter, and a pinch of salt in a small bowl. Sprinkle over the filled peppers.
Bake – Bake uncovered. The poppers are done when the jalapeno peppers are tender and the cheese is melted. Sprinkle the baked poppers with the remaining chopped bacon and sliced green onions.
Make Ahead, Freezing, and Reheating Tips
Make Ahead: A great thing about this appetizer is that they can be made in advance! Prepare and fill the peppers then store in the fridge up to 2 days in advance before baking and serving.
Freezing: You can even freeze the unbaked stuffed poppers to bake later. After stuffing the peppers, place them in an airtight container (do not stack them). Freeze the poppers for up to 1 month then bake from frozen – you will need to add 5-10 minutes to the bake time.
Leftovers and Reheating: While the poppers are best served right after baking, you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat the poppers in the oven for about 15-20 minutes until warmed through.
- Use Gloves! I HIGHLY recommend wearing gloves when cutting jalapenos – and be very careful not to touch your face or rub your eyes. If you don’t have gloves, I recommend using a spoon to scrape out the ribs and seeds so you don’t get the oils on your fingers then immediately wash your hands well.
- Customize the heat. The spice is in the ribs and seeds . By removing the ribs and seeds, the jalapenos are much less spicy. If you LOVE spice, you can leave some of the ribs in the peppers.
- Leave the Stem. When slicing the jalapenos in half, make sure to leave the stem on both halves. Not only does the stem make a pretty appearance, but it makes it easier to pick them up to eat.
- Skip the Breadcrumbs for Low Carb Option. If you want a game day snack that is Keto-friendly, you can simply skip the sprinkle of breadcrumbs on the top. The poppers are still fabulous without it!
- Serve with a Dipping Sauce. While the poppers are amazing on their own, you can also serve them with ranch, blue cheese dressing, or your other favorite cool and creamy dressing.
More Appetizers You’ll Love
- Crispy Baked Chicken Wings
- Jalapeno Popper Dip
- Baked Irish Nachos
- Easy Black Bean Dip
- Easy 3-Ingredient Rotel Dip
- 1 pound jalapeno peppers about 12 medium
- 8 ounces cream cheese softened
- 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese or Mexican blend
- 6 slices bacon cooked crisp and finely chopped, divided
- 3 green onions thinly sliced, divided
- 2 tablespoons finely minced parsley
- 1 clove garlic finely minced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
- 2 teaspoons butter melted
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
- Slice jalapenos in half lengthwise and carefully remove seeds and ribs, keep the pepper intact (pro tips: leave stems intact when slicing in half and wear food grade gloves when handling peppers). If you are wearing gloves, you can scrape them with your hands.
- Arrange the peppers, cut side up, on the prepared baking sheet and set aside.
- In a medium sized bowl, mix together the cream cheese, cheddar cheese, ⅔ of the bacon, ⅔ of the green onions, parsley and garlic until well combined.
- Spoon the mixture into the open peppers and spread to fill. The filling should just slightly overfill the peppers.
- In a small bowl, stir together panko breadcrumbs, melted butter and a pinch of salt. Sprinkle evenly over the peppers.
- Bake uncovered for about 15-18 minutes, or until peppers are tender and cheese is melted.
- Garnish with reserved bacon and green onions and serve immediately.