Spicy baked Jalapeno Poppers are filled with creamy cheese and topped with crunchy breadcrumbs. These stuffed peppers are baked in the oven and make the perfect appetizer.
It must be noted that we realize that “jalapeño popper” is spelled with a tilde, however Google and most Google users are not searching with this accent, so we have made the decision to take it off.
One of our favorite things is this jalapeno popper recipe. These little snacks are spicy, cheesy, and just a bit crispy. The creamy cheese and ranch mix helps balance the spice of the peppers and they are absolutely addictive.
Normally we just fill them with a blend of cheeses and some seasoning, but you can also add some chopped bacon if you like. And if you like the sound of jalapeno poppers, but can’t tolerate heat, you can use mini bell peppers instead, they are sweet instead of spicy.
How to Work with Jalapeno Peppers
Jalapeno poppers are not difficult to prepare, but there are just a few things you need to be careful with so you don’t end up with a burning sensation on your hands or worse, your face or eyes.
First, when preparing fresh jalapenos wearing gloves is a must. Powderless food grade gloves are available at the grocery store, but also online. In a pinch, cover your hands with plastic baggies or give them a good layer of vegetable or canola oil to try and build a barrier for your skin.
Peppers contain an oil called capsaicin, which is what contributes to that spicy, addictive burn you get while eating them. But this same oil is an irritant to your skin. You may not notice much of a burn when cutting one or two peppers, but when cutting a lot of peppers you can actually cause blistering skin.
The second thing to be careful of is not touching your face. Trust me, you do not want the pepper oils anywhere near your eyes or nose. Don’t be the person that puts on the gloves… and then touches your face!
If you do get burned, place the afflicted area into a bowl of milk, cream or buttermilk to relieve the pain. It might takes several hours to return to normal.
Are red jalapenos different from green? Nope- just a different age. Green jalapenos are young while red have been left to ripen on the vine a little longer. Either can be used and in fact, it might be fun to use a combination to make your platter more colorful!
How to Cut Jalapenos
To prepare the peppers for the jalapeno poppers you will first wash them, then using a sharp knife slice them straight down the middle.
From here, if you want your poppers to be really spicy, you can leave the seeds and ribs in. However, to make them spicy, but more tolerable, you can remove the seeds. Using a sharp paring knife slice along the ribs then pull them out. Rinse again.
How to Make (Step-by-step)
Gather your ingredients:
- Jalapeno peppers
- Cheeses: cream cheese, cheddar and parmesan
- Dry Ranch Seasoning- this provides the unique flavor!
- Hot Sauce
- Bread crumbs
- Scallions or chives, for garnish
- Ranch Dressing , for serving
ONE. Prepare the jalapenos by washing them, slicing them in half and removing the seeds and ribs. (If you want them extra spicy you can leave the seeds in). Do not remove the stem.
TWO. Mix the filling ingredients in a small bowl, then stuff the peppers with cheese filling.
THREE. Place the bread crumbs in a small bowl or plate, then press the cream cheese side of the peppers into the bread crumbs. Place the peppers on a baking sheet sprayed with non-stick spray or lined with parchment paper.
FOUR. Bake the peppers at 400°F for 12 minutes, then turn the oven to broil and broil 2-3 minutes until the tops are golden brown. Watch them carefully during this phase as they will go from lightly browned to black very quickly.
FIVE. Garnish with scallions (green onions) or chives.
Air Fryer Jalapeno Poppers
To air fry the jalapeno poppers, instead of baking them, prepare the peppers as you normally would. Then place them in an air fryer basket or tray in a single layer.
Set the air fryer to 380°F and cook for 5-7 minutes depending on your air fryer and your desired crispiness.
This is one of those recipes that can be made a little different every time and is super forgiving. Here are some of our favorite swaps.
- Add 2 tablespoons cooked and crumbled bacon to the cream cheese.
- Use a flavored cream cheese like scallion or jalapeno.
- Swap our ranch seasoning for a packet of Italian, taco or fajita seasoning.
- Make your sweat pour by adding chopped habanero or ghost peppers to the cream cheese.
- Serve with blue cheese dressing instead of ranch.
- Make a milder, kid friendly version using mini sweet peppers instead of jalapenos.
- Use panko crumbs for more crunch.
- Omit the bread crumbs for a low carb appetizer.
More jalapeno recipes:
- Jalapeño Lime Flank Steak Tacos
- Cheesy Jalapeño Quesadillas
- Instant Pot Salsa Chicken
- Jalapeno Cornbread Muffins
Baked Jalapeno Poppers
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Prep a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil for easy clean up.
- Wash the peppers, then carefully slice the peppers down the middle and, with a sharp paring knife, remove the seeds and ribs. (If you want your poppers really spicy you can leave them in). Do not remove the stem.
- Mix the cream cheese, cheddar cheese, parmesan cheese, ranch seasoning mix, green onions and hot sauce in a small bowl. Spoon the mixture into the pepper halves.
- Place the bread crumbs in a small bowl or plate, then press the cream cheese side of the peppers into the bread crumbs.
- Place the peppers on a baking sheet.
- Bake for 12 minutes, then turn the oven to broil and broil 2-3 minutes until the tops are golden brown. Watch them carefully during this phase as they will go from lightly browns to black very quickly.
- Serve hot on their own or with ranch dip on the side.
- If you've tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was in the comments section.