I made these poppers a few years ago for a party and people flipped over them. They’re a fun twist on your standard popper. They’ve got the basics (jalapeños and cream cheese) but with a few flavor twists thrown in. Namely in the way of bacon, scallions, and APPLES. Yes, apples. You may think it sounds like an odd combo, but trust me, the flavors really pop with this stuffing. See what I did there? They POP! In the POPPERS? Eh? OK sorry, bad joke time is over. I blame it on the lack of sleep.
The apples lend juuuust a touch of tart sweetness and the bacon and scallions…well, they just make everything more awesome (duh). I adore the FLAVOR of jalapeños themselves (they also provide the perfect level of heat for me), but if you have another type of pepper you prefer, I’m sure this would work in most varieties. In fact, if I ever have leftover filling, I’ll just stuff a regular ol’ bell pepper (because I always have them on hand) and roast it off the same way I do the jalapeños. Easy peasy.
I love making a large batch of these poppers when the jalapeños are lookin’ purdy at the store. I cut/seed them, fill them, and then freeze them on baking sheets until firm. Then, I transfer them to plastic baggies and keep ‘em in the fridge for a quick and awesome snack. These babies and football were meant to be together. Just sayin’. You’ll see that the recipe below is for a large batch. Feel free to halve it for a more immediate use…or freeze the leftovers for another time.
I recommend, however, having a large quantity of these on hand no matter what…because they disappear like crazy. People love a good popper.
On that note, I’m off to feed a hungry baby and sneak in some snuggling. I may even pull a few of these poppers out of the fridge for a post-feed snack. Yum.
Bacon & Apple Stuffed Jalapeño Poppers (makes 40 poppers)
20 medium jalapeño peppers, halved lengthwise
8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
1 small Granny Smith apple, cored and grated/finely chopped
3 large scallions, finely minced
5 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.
2. Slice each pepper in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds/ribs with a spoon.
3. Stir the cream cheese in a large bowl until smooth. Add the apples, crumbled bacon, scallions, and half of the cheese. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
4. Fill each jalapeño half with the cream cheese mixture. Place the filled peppers on a baking sheet and top each one with a little bit of the remaining mozzarella cheese.
5. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the filling is warmed through and bubbling. Broil the peppers on HIGH for 2-3 minutes until the cheese is lightly browned. Remove from oven, allow to cool slightly, and serve warm or at room temperature.