Jalapeno Poppers have to be one of my favorite snacks. I certainly don’t care how these lovely nuggets of heat come, I think they are fantastic. You can stuff them with cheese, bacon, shrimp, or just about anything else and they are going to disappear.
I think the first time I tried a jalapeno popper was when I was working in a restaurant, or you might just call it a place that served food. I thought these hot poppers were the best thing we had on the menu.
Crispy, creamy, and just a bit spicy, Jalapeno Poppers are a hard-to-beat party snack or tailgate food everyone will love. The next time you get a craving for these classic restaurant apps, forget about going out. You can make the best poppers at home!
What’s a Jalapeno Popper?
Anyone who hasn’t tried a Jalapeno Poppers is in for a real treat with this recipe. It all starts with stuffing a hollowed-out jalapeno pepper full of your choice of cheese and other ingredients.
The stuffed peppers are then breaded and fried until golden brown. What is not to love about that?
Serve up these beauties with pineapple curry or honey Sriracha sauce for an added kick. Or mellow out the heat with a dairy-based sauce such as sour cream or a blue cheese dip.
Whatever way you like to eat your stuffed jalapeno peppers, after you realize how easy they are to make at home, this recipe will become your go-to crowd-pleaser.
Before You Begin
Making Jalapeno Poppers isn’t tricky, but there are a few basics safety tips anyone who does often cook with jalapeno peppers needs to know. Jalapenos peppers are not exceeding hot, but they can pack quite a wallop with a Scoville rating of between 2,500 and 8000. Before preparing the recipe, remember to:
- Wear gloves when working with jalapenos. The peppers can cause slight skin irritation for people who are highly susceptible to capsaicin oil, but the real risk is forgetting you handled peppers and then touching your eyes, nose or other sensitive areas of your body. That is sure to give you a rather nasty surprise. Remember to always wash your hands with soap immediately after preparing the peppers.
- Test your peppers before stuffing them. Some jalapenos are mild, and some are wild. Do yourself a favor and find out which type you have before starting. The tip of the pepper is the mildest part of the pepper and up by the stem is where the heat-level tops out. Slice off the tiny bit of the tip of the pepper, taste the pepper, and this should give you an idea of how hot they are.
- Reduce the heat by cleaning out the pepper thoroughly. The pepper’s seeds and the very top layer of flesh on the inside of the pepper called the pith contain the most capsaicin oil. Use a small spoon to scrape out the seeds and remove the pith. You can rinse out the peppers to get rid of even more heat. Make sure the peppers are bone dry before starting to stuff.
Here’s a list of what you need:
- Jalapeno peppers
- Cream cheese
- Shredded Cheddar cheese
- All-purpose flour
- Ground black pepper
- Chili powder
- Garlic powder
- Seasoned bread crumbs
- Vegetable oil for frying
How to Make Jalapeno Poppers
- Slice jalapenos in half lengthwise.
- Use a spoon to scrape out the pith and seeds from the peppers.
- Place cream cheese and cheddar cheese in a bowl and stir until well blended.
- Use a spoon to fill each pepper half with the cheese mixture.
- Place flour, salt, pepper, paprika, chili powder, and garlic powder in a bowl and whisk to combine thoroughly.
- Place milk into a separate shallow bowl.
- Dip stuffed jalapeno into the seasoned flour.
- Place the floured jalapeno in the milk and turn it over to coat all sides with milk.
- Place the jalapeno back into the seasoned flour and turn it over to coat all sides with flour.
- Place the floured pepper on a rack on a baking sheet and let the peppers sit for about 10 minutes.
- Pour breadcrumbs into a separate bowl.
- Dip floured jalapeno pepper into the milk again.
- Dip the jalapeno into the bread crumbs.
- Place the jalapeno back on the rack.
- Heat oil to 350 degrees.
- Dip the jalapeno into the milk and the bread crumbs for a second time.
- Let the breaded jalapenos set for about 5 minutes.
- Fry the jalapeno poppers one or two at a time until golden brown, about 1 to 2 minutes.
- Drain fried jalapeno poppers before serving.
Make More Than You Need
The recipe below makes 30 poppers, but you can easily make two or three times that amount at one time. Then you can freeze the poppers and reheat them when you are ready to enjoy.
How to Freeze Jalapeno Poppers
Cook them as directed, let cool, place them spaced apart on a baking sheet, and then freeze solid. When frozen, place them in freezer bags. Reheat frozen jalapeno poppers in a 350-degree oven until hot, around 20 minutes.
Love jalapeno peppers? Try these recipes!
- Air Fryer Jalapeno Poppers
- Candied Jalapenos
- Cheddar Cheese Jalapeno Poppers
- Jalapeno Cornbread
- Jalapeno Cream Cheese Wontons
- Jalapeno Ranch Dip
Great Game Day Recipes
- 7 Layer Dip
- Bacon Wrapped Smokies
- Fried Cheese Curds
- Jarlsberg Cheese Dip
- Taco Ring
- Vegetable Dip
- White Queso Dip
- 30 jalapeno peppers
- 16 ounces cream cheese softened
- 12 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon paprika
- ⅛ teaspoon chili powder
- ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
- 1 quart vegetable oil for frying
Slice jalapenos in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to scrape out the pith and the seeds inside of the peppers. The seeds and the pith are where the intense heat is, so you want to remove the heat.
In a bowl, combine cream cheese and cheddar cheese until well blended.
Use a spoon to fill each pepper half with the cheese mixture.
Prepare seasoned flour by placing the flour into a small shallow bowl. Add salt, pepper, paprika, chili powder, and garlic powder to the flour. Whisk or stir spices into the flour until it has a uniform appearance.
Place milk into a separate shallow bowl.
Dip stuffed jalapeno into the seasoned flour, the milk, and then back into the seasoned flour.
Place floured pepper on a baking sheet with a rack. Let the peppers “dry” for about 10 minutes. This step is crucial for the peppers. The flour layer will help the stuffing remain inside the pepper, and give the breadcrumbs something to hold onto.
Pour breadcrumbs into a separate bowl.
Dip floured jalapeno pepper into the milk and then into the bread crumbs. Place pepper back on the rack.
Heat oil to 350 degrees.
Dip pepper into the milk and the bread crumbs for the second time. Go ahead and dip all, this should be enough drying time for the coating. The bread crumb coating needs about five minutes for its drying time.
Fry peppers one or two at a time until golden brown. This will only take a minute or two.
Remove poppers from the oil and drain on a wire rack.
You can freeze the fried jalapeno poppers to enjoy later. Place them spaced apart on a baking sheet and freeze until solid. Store frozen poppers in a zip-top freezer bag. To reheat frozen jalapeno poppers, bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes until hot, about 20 minutes.