Baked Stuffed Jalapeños
Jalapeños Peppers stuffed with cheese and bacon make a great appetizer for a crowd! They’re easy to prep ahead and then throw a batch in the oven when people get hungry.
Are you a risk taker? I think one has to be a bit adventurous to eat jalapeños.
You never know if biting into one is going to yield that wonderful flavor and kick that is the basis for so much of Southwestern food. Or if that one little bite will pack such a fiery punch that you’ll be running around the room mouth agape and tears in your eyes, begging for something to cool it all down.
Dairy is the Antidote to Jalapeño Heat
If you find that the pepper you’ve bitten into is just too hot for your tongue, cool it off with sour cream, milk, or cream cheese. That’s the trick and the reason why cheese is so often paired with hot chiles.
There’s something in the milk protein that lessens the impact of the capsaicin (the molecules that give chiles their heat). Which is one very good reason why stuffed jalapeños are stuffed with cheese, among other things.
By the way, if you want mild peppers, look for peppers with smooth skins. Striations tend to indicate that the pepper has been stressed while growing, and that can mean a hotter pepper.
Baked Jalapeño Poppers – Mixing it Up!
The other good reason why stuffed jalapeños are filled with cheese is they taste good that way! Hank and I decided to experiment with stuffed jalapeños this week.
We stuffed them with cheddar, with jack, with pepper jack, with cream cheese, with bacon mixed with lots of other things, and we ended up with two favorites.
Favorites: Bacon and Jack Cheese, and Cream Cheese Stuffed Jalapeños
One of our favorite jalapeño poppers was the cream cheese stuffed jalapeño filled with onions, cilantro, cumin and a little bit of jack cheese. The other favorite is similar but has jack cheese and bacon instead of the cream cheese. But you can really do whatever you want here.
Mix it up. Try adding some shrimp, or barbecue sauce. Use queso fresco instead of the cream cheese. Out of the two baked jalapeño poppers recipes below, I loved the way the cream cheese enveloped the jalapeños in my mouth. Hank likes the bacon and jack (well, he would like the bacon version, no duh.)
A Word about Working with Hot Peppers
When working with jalapeños, it helps to wear disposable gloves. If you don’t have gloves, coat your hands with some cooking oil to protect your skin before working with the peppers. Once you are finished, wash your hands thoroughly with warm soapy water. Do not touch your eyes for several hours after handling the peppers.
Can You Make These Ahead of Time?
You can prep everything and keep them in the fridge a day ahead, and then bake the peppers when you’re ready to serve them.
Do you have a favorite stuffing for stuffed jalapeños or baked jalapeño poppers? We would love to hear about it!
LOVE JALAPEÑOS? HERE ARE 5 MORE RECIPES TO TRY:
- BBQ Bacon Jalapeño Poppers
- Pineapple Jalapeño Pitcher Margaritas
- Cheesy Jalapeño Pull-Apart Bread
- Jalapeño Bread and Butter Pickles
- Jalapeño Cornbread
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