As far as appetizers go, I like them to pack some serious flavor in each bite. If the apps are good enough, I can easily just forget about the actual entree. There’s something about being able to sample myself into oblivion that sets well with me, so let me load up a plate with a couple dozen of this and that and I’m a happy, happy girl.
These Cheesy Jalapeño Bites are pretty much the best of everything. there’s smoky, and spicy, and creamy. Some crunch and some ooze.……and an ingredient you totally don’t expect adds a tiny bit of sweetness to balance out all the rest!
For party purposes, you can make the filling several hours in advance, clean your jalapeños, and set both aside. Then, about 30 minutes before you need them, pack the filling into the halved chilies and let them bake.
I think they are the perfect combination of flavors with no one ingredient overpowering the others. I can’t stand a pepper that gives you nothing but cream cheese. Bor-ing!! I like them with a little bit of the pepper crunch left, but you can let them go a little bit longer that the recommended time for a softer bite.
1/3 cup finely diced apple (like an 1/8 inch dice or smaller)
3 green onions–minced
1/3 cup cooked and diced small bacon
2 pinches kosher salt
1 pinch ground black pepper, plus more for the tops
Cut each jalapeño in half, lengthwise. Remove seeds and membranes and discard. Set aside.
Mix together the softened cream cheese, colby-jack cheese, apple, green onion, and bacon. Season with couple of pinches of kosher salt, and a pinch of pepper.
Using your fingers (trust me, it’s the easiest), stuff each half of jalapeño with the cream cheese mixture. Don’t pack it in, but fill them up good.
Place them on a stainless rack fitted into a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees F. for 20–25 minutes. Smaller peppers require a shorter cooking time. If you prefer some crunch to your jalapeño, choose the lesser cooking time.
Let peppers sit for 5 minutes and then serve immediately. They are best eaten right away.