I love spicy food and jalapeño poppers have always been a favorite. Is it just me, or have jalapeños gotten hotter in the last few years? I have tried store-bought, farmer's market peppers, and home grown. Too dang hot! Enter Coolapeno Jalapeño Poppers!
This year while shopping for plants for my garden, I came across "Coolapeños" by Bonnie Plants. They are like regular jalapeños with the heat removed. Too good to be true? I bought three plants and crossed my fingers. Today I picked three medium sized peppers and made Coolapeño Jalapeno Poppers. I was prepared for them to still be hot, but they were not! Two of them had no heat at all and the third just a little. They were delicious! Michael even ate them and declared them "bomb diggity!" I wish I had planted more. Here's my recipe which would work with any jalapeño pepper you like, hot or "cool!"
Here is a fresh take on jalapeño poppers, it's my Jalapeño Popper Wontons!
- Use center cut bacon, not thick sliced. Cook the bacon strips in the microwave for 90 seconds or so until they begin to cook and give off some grease. Allow the bacon strips to cool, then slice the pieces in half lengthwise, not widthwise. This makes it easier to wrap and allows the bacon to fully cook. Nobody needs a popper with flaccid bacon wrapped around it, especially these Coolapeno Jalapeno Poppers!
- Use a combination of cream cheese and cheddar for extra flavor and texture.
- Serve with cold ranch dressing on the side!
"Coolapeño" Jalapeño Poppers
- Microwave or pan to cook bacon
- 3-4 each jalapeño peppers
- 3-4 tablespoons cream cheese
- 3 tablespoons cheddar cheese (shredded)
- 4 slices bacon (center-cut works best)
- Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Wash the peppers, pat dry and slice in half lengthwise. Wash hands with hot, soapy water after handling peppers.
- Use a small knife to remove the seeds and membrane. Leave some in if you like more heat.
- Place 4 slices of bacon on folded paper towels. Microwave 1-2 minutes until the bacon begins to cook and release grease. Remove from microwave and set aside until cool.
- Use a sharp knife to slice the bacon strips in half lengthwise.
- Stuff each pepper half with cream cheese until full and slightly mounded. Lightly press cheddar cheese onto the top.
- Lay the cheese-stuffed pepper in the center of a bacon slice and wrap the bacon around the pepper so that the ends are on the underside. You might have to stretch it a bit. (see photo) Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
- Place the bacon-wrapped poppers on an un-greased baking sheet. Bake in 400 degree oven until the poppers are golden brown and the bacon is fully cooked. (about 12-15 minutes)
- Remove from oven and serve piping hot with a side of cold ranch dressing.
Approximate nutrition information is provided as a convenience and courtesy only. You are encouraged to do your own calculations if precise data is required.