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Make these easy Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers as an appetizer for your next party night or game day! Every bite is loaded with creamy, mildly spicy, cheesy, smoky flavor that is totally irresistible!

If you love entertaining, be sure not to miss my collection of Easy Party Appetizers for a Crowd. It’s got loads of fun favorites like Philly Cheesesteak DipOven Baked Korean BBQ Chicken Wings, and Easy Chicken Parmesan Sliders and  that are sure to be a hit at your next party!

Homemade jalapeno poppers wrapped in bacon on a plate with ranch dressing.

This recipe was originally posted February 1, 2019. It has been updated with new photos and more detailed instructions.

For you football fans out there, this one is for you. I’m completely obsessed with the flavor of jalapeno poppers and have already shared one of my favorite versions in the form of jalapeno popper dip.

But this bacon-wrapped twist on the classic is every bit as delicious and even more traditional. Because I definitely cannot resist these poppable, deliciously savory bites!

This easy bacon-wrapped jalapeno popper recipe reminds me of the classic breaded jalapeno poppers that I used to have when I worked at a Mexican restaurant in high school. Except these are baked in the oven instead of being deep fried and they are wrapped with bacon instead of being breaded with panko breadcrumbs. And if you are asking me, this version is 1,000x better!

These are the perfect party appetizer with the combination of crispy bacon, the savory, rich cream cheese and cheddar filling, and the mildly spicy jalapenos.

I really do find jalapenos irresistible and use them a lot because I just love the flavor they give. They really aren’t even spicy once the seeds and ribs or membranes are scraped away using a teaspoon. Our kiddos can handle the heat no problem with these babies.

Jalapeno popper appetizers on a white plate.

Pro Tip: I like to slice right through the stem and leave it on so there is something to hold on to when picking up these jalapeno poppers.

Fresh jalapenos

How to make Jalapeno Poppers

  1. Prep the jalapenos: Start by washing and slicing the jalapenos in half lengthwise. Scrape out all of the seeds and white membrane using a spoon. You might want to wear rubber gloves to do this. If you don’t have any, try sticking your hand in a plastic ziploc bag to protect your skin from the jalapeno juice.
  2. Make the cream cheese filling: Combine the softened cream cheese, shredded cheddar cheese, garlic powder, salt and pepper together in a bowl. As long as the cream cheese is softened by sitting on the counter for half an hour, this should be easy to do with just a spoon.
A bowl with cream cheese, cheddar cheese, salt and pepper.
  1. Fill each of the jalapeno pepper halves with the cream cheese mixture: Don’t overfill or you will have a mess while the poppers bake since the cheese will ooze out all over the place. I find it easiest to just spread the cream cheese in with a butter knife.
Jalapeno halves with cream cheese and cheddar cheese filling on a baking sheet.
  1. Wrap each jalapeno half with partially cooked bacon.  You can secure the bacon with a toothpick to help it stay put if you need to, but I find that if I wrap the bacon fairly tightly and arrange it so the seam where the bacon ends overlap is on the bottom of the jalapeno, it works just fine without toothpicks. If your jalapenos are larger, you might want to use a full slice of bacon for each popper rather than just a half piece.
  2. Set the bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers on a wire rack that has been sprayed with cooking spray set over a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil for easier clean-up.
  3. Bake: Let the jalapeno poppers cook for 20 to 25 minutes at 400 degrees F until the cheese is melted and the bacon is cooked all the way and crispy.
  4. Serve: Remove them from oven and serve hot with cool ranch dressing as a dipping sauce.
Cream Cheese filled jalapenos with bacon

Tips for Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers

  • As spicy as you want: If you get all the seeds and membranes out, then your jalapeno poppers will hardly be spicy at all. I hardly notice any spiciness when the jalapenos are prepped this way. Especially since the cream cheese filling moderates much of the spiciness that remains after removing the seeds and membranes. If you like them spicy, just don’t scrape out all of the membranes and seeds!
  • Look for larger jalapenos: I try to choose ones that are about 3-4 inches long each. They are easier to clean and stuff, and make more of a substantial bite for a party appetizer.
  • Regular vs. thick-cut bacon: The choice is really whichever your family prefers, although I like to stick with regular bacon for this recipe. Thicker cut bacon will need a few extra minutes of baking time to cook all the way, and might be slightly more difficult to wrap around the jalapeno halves and have it stay put without a toothpick, so just keep that in mind.

Storage and Reheating

Make Ahead: Jalapeno poppers can be made up to 2 days in advance, which can be a lifesaver on party days when you have other things going on. Just assemble and wrap a baking sheet of the uncooked jalapeno poppers tightly with plastic wrap and store in the fridge until ready to bake.

Freezing: You can also freeze the assembled apps on the baking sheet for 60 minutes, then transfer them to a freezer-safe airtight container or reusable bag. When ready to serve, just place as many of the frozen jalapeno poppers as you would like on a baking sheet and bake without thawing, adding 10 to 15 minutes to the regular baking time to account for them being frozen.

Reheating: Leftovers (if there are any) reheat pretty well in the microwave the next day. The bacon won’t be as crispy, but it’s still a delicious bite! Or chop them up and stir them into a bowl of mac and cheese for something different. It’s so good!

Jalapeno poppers with bacon on a baking sheet

Can these jalapeno poppers be made in the air fryer?

If you happen to have an airfryer, you can definitely use it to cook your stuffed jalapeno poppers. Just preheat the air fryer to 325 degrees F, then cook the jalapeno poppers in a single layer for 12 minutes until the cheese is melted and the bacon is crisp.

Bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers on a plate with ranch dipping sauce.

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Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers
Yield: 12 servings

Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers

Make these Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers as an appetizer for your next party night or game day!  Every bite is loaded with creamy, spicy, cheesy, smoky flavor that is totally irresistible!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 12 slices bacon, sliced in half
  • 12 large jalapeno peppers, halved lengthwise, seeds and membranes removed
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese or pepperjack cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a sheet pan with foil and lay bacon slices on it so they aren't overlapping. Partially bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove bacon from the baking sheet and set a wire rack on top. Spray the wire rack with cooking spray.
  2. While the bacon is cooking, slice jalapenos in half lengthwise and remove the seeds and rib by scraping the sides with a spoon.
  3. In a medium bowl mix the cream cheese, cheddar cheese, garlic powder, salt and pepper until combined.  Use a knife to spread some of the cream cheese mixture into each jalapeno half. Do not overfill.
  4. Wrap jalapeno half a half slice of bacon, securing bacon with a toothpick, if necessary.  Arrange the wrapped jalapeno poppers on the wire rack.
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes until bacon is crispy and and the cheese is melted. Serve immediately with ranch dressing for dipping.

Notes

  • If you prefer your jalapeno poppers more well-wrapped, you can use a full slice of bacon on each. This is sometimes necessary if the jalapenos are especially large.
  • Freezing Instructions: Prepare the poppers through step 4. Instead of baking, freeze the poppers for 1 hour, then transfer to an airtight, freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Bake from frozen, adding an extra 10 minutes to the bake time.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

12

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 153Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 35mgSodium: 426mgCarbohydrates: 2gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 9g

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

A collage of 10 football party appetizer recipes perfect for your next game day party!