Recently, the boyfriend and I decided to make enchiladas for dinner. Although it wasn’t quite dinner time and we both needed a snack to hold us over. While looking through the fridge, I found jalapenos from a few days before that I had forgotten about. While boyfriend is an expert jalapeno popper maker, I myself need some (read: A LOT OF) practice, so I decided to experiment with whatever we had on hand.
I’m gonna just say right now that this was a very successful experiment. We planned on eating a couple and saving the rest to eat with our enchiladas. They didn’t last that long, because they were just too delicious.
I used turkey bacon for these poppers – mostly because that’s what we happened to have in the fridge at the time, thanks to an amazing coupon deal we found. Turns out, turkey bacon is a great (and healthy!) substitution for the regular stuff – your poppers don’t turn out nearly as greasy. We’ve had trouble in the past with pork bacon not getting crispy enough and being almost overwhelming in taste. Don’t get me wrong – I love regular bacon, but turkey bacon is easier to work with in this case.
Start by cutting the jalapenos length-wise while your oven preheats. You want to scoop out all the seeds and veins (is that what they’re called?), and you could cut the stems off as well but I prefer to leave them on. Just don’t eat that part. I just use a tiny spoon for this – if you use a knife, you run the risks of poking through the jalapeno and having cheese melt through the other side.
Next, mix your cheese-filling. You can experiment with different cheeses depending on your tastes, but in general you’ll want to have cream cheese, and at least one type of shredded or grated cheese. I chose shredded cheddar and grated Parmesan. You want to use a little bit more cream cheese than other cheeses. I also threw in a little onion powder, salt, and pepper for flavor. Then just fill those bad boys up with some cheese mixture. Don’t overfill the jalapenos too much, or the cheese will just melt all over your baking sheet. Which actually doesn’t sound too bad, so you do you.
The finishing touch before throwing these guys in the oven is to wrap them in turkey bacon. One piece of turkey bacon is a bit too long for a jalapeno, so I cut them in half. If you’ve ever made bacon-wrapped jalapeno poppers, you’ll know that the bacon tends to curl up at the ends. To prevent this, just make sure the ends of the bacon are tucked neatly underneath the jalapeno. All that’s left to do after this is place your poppers on a lightly greased baking sheet and throw in the oven for 12-15 minutes.
Let cool for a few minutes, and then enjoy!
4 jalapenos, halved and seeds removed
4 slices of turkey bacon, cut in half
¼ cup of cream cheese
¼ cup of shredded cheddar cheese
⅛ cup of grated Parmesan cheese
¼ teaspoon of onion powder
- Preheat oven to 425 F
- Slice jalapenos in half length-wise, and remove seeds. You can cut the tops off of the jalapenos if you prefer, but I like how they look when left on.
- In a small bowl, mix cream cheese, shredded cheddar, grated Parmesan, onion powder, and pinch of salt and pepper
- Fill each jalapeno half with small spoonful of cheese mix.
- Take half a slice of turkey bacon and wrap around each jalapeno. Try to wrap ends of turkey bacon around back of jalapeno (not the cheese-filled side), so that they don’t become unraveled when cooking.
- Place wrapped jalapeno poppers in lightly-greased baking sheet.
- Bake at 425 for 12-15 minutes.
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