Ok, so about 2 years ago I had some serious stomach issues and couldn’t hold down anything fried so I started trying a bunch of new recipes. I had to completely re-think how I ate. Well this isn’t a new recipe but it was one I thought of during that time – this is one of the foods I remember my mom making when I was growing up. She still makes them when we go down there for a visit and do some sort of get together with my sisters and their families. So here is how you make un-fried Jalapeño Poppers. In my opinion, after eating them this way I don’t even like them fried anymore.
To start, you will need…
- jalapeños – I usually get between 8-10
- scraper of sorts – I use the end of my peeler because it has this little scoop thing (I’m not sure if all peelers have this or not)
- cream cheese (I used 1/3 less fat Market Pantry brand – I can’t bring myself to use fat free, but the 1/3 less fat one works well)
- bacon – I’m not a total fan of turkey bacon so I just use regular bad for you bacon
- cooking spray
First, you cook your bacon. I prefer to cook my bacon in the oven on a slotted pan (with one under it to catch the grease of course) – it causes all the grease to drain to the bottom of the pan and it makes the bacon extra crispy which is good for this recipe. I bake mine at 425 degrees F until it is crispy – I didn’t time it but I assume it’s around 15 minutes or so. [I only used half of the pack of bacon, but cook as much as you think you may like.]
While the bacon is cooking, wash, dry, and prep your jalapeños. Just slice off the caps and then slice them length wise. Then use your scraper to scrape out all the seeds and all of the membrane. I was always told that the seeds and membrane are the extremely hot part – not sure if that is true or not but I’ll go with it for now. You will still definitely have the spicy flavor, but I’m not trying to set anyone on fire here.
Tip: use gloves or a plastic bag to protect your hands from the oil from the jalapeños so you won’t have constantly burning hands for the rest of the day – especially if you have a small child or wear contacts! It burns!! And, don’t forget to warn the children away from touching the raw jalapeños.
Next, take a small spoon or a knife and fill each jalapeño with cream cheese. I just fill them up to the brim. You can put as much or as little as you want in them but I’m a fan of cream cheese so the more the better.
Note: if you have any cream cheese left you are not going to want to use if for anything else unless you don’t mind the extra kick it might have after exposing it to the jalapeños.
Spray your pan with some cooking spray to make sure they don’t stick and lay out your jalapeños on your pan.
Bake at 425 degrees F for about 20-25 minutes. Watch for the cream cheese to start browning around the edges – that’s a good indicator that it’s done.
While this is baking take your bacon and cut it up in to small pieces.
Once done, take out your jalapeños and line them up on a tray or plate with the bowl of bacon on the side.
I prefer to do the bacon on the side so that the people you are serving can determine how much they want on it.
Pile up with bacon and enjoy!
These are great for parties or just a snack for yourself. There’s something about the surprise of how spicy they may or may not be! Each jalapeño is different and always has me going back for the next!
I don’t share these with children because they can be spicy, but if yours are anything like mine, this is what they will be doing while you are cooking. :)
Let me know what you think if you make them for yourself.