You’re welcome and I’m sorry all at the same time. These spicy bacon wrapped bites of perfection will put a serious wrench in your dieting plans! If you’re walking down the aisle this summer and are trying to fit into a wedding dress (like THIS girl) then close your laptop darling and read this post after the big day! I’m slightly kidding but for real, this recipe is très indulgent and a little bit of a treat.
The individual ingredients each bring something different to the table. Jalapeño lends spice, bacon brings the savory component and both ingredients are cradled by the mellowness of cream cheese. The trifecta! It just works beautifully.
First things first, consider wearing kitchen gloves when slicing and de-seeding the jalapeños. I’ve made these a few times without gloves and every time I was cursing myself well into the night. Why did I do this to myself?! Never again! It’s worth the few dollars to purchase gloves and skip the burning hands chapter of the evening.
This recipe can be made the day before, packed in an airtight container and stored in the fridge. It’s great to be able to make this ahead of time and have one less one less thing you’ll be rushing to do. I’m always looking for ways to make my life easier and simplify so I’m not stressed about having people over. Count this as one for the books!
- 12 Jalapeños, cut in half and seeded
- 12 pieces bacon, cut in half (I use applewood smoked bacon)
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened at room temperature
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- 2 splashes Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce
- ½ cup Queso de Oaxaca or Monterrey Jack cheese
- ¼ panko breadcrumbs
- 24 toothpicks to secure bacon in the oven
- ranch for dipping (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper for easy cleanup. Place a baking rack on top of the baking sheet. Set aside.
- Slice the jalapeños in half lengthwise; remove the seeds and membrane. Keep the membrane if you want more spice. Set aside.
- Beat the cream cheese, garlic, Worchestershire sauce, smoked paprika and Oaxaca or Monterrey Jack cheese together until smooth. I prefer to use a standing mixer or hand mixer but you can certainly do this by hand. Season to taste with a bit of salt.
- Fill jalapeño halves equally with cream cheese mixture.
- Cut slices of bacon in half and wrap a piece around each stuffed jalapeño. Use a toothpick to fasten the bacon around the jalapeño.
- Transfer jalapeño poppers over to the baking rack. Sprinkle with panko breadcrumbs and bake for 25-30 minutes depending on size and oven temperature.
- Serve immediately!
You can also use mini sweet peppers if you want a less spicy option.