Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Jalapeno Chile Poppers

Now that baseball season is here, I need good appetizers and finger foods to serve with cold beer while the Mets game is on TV.  These Jalapeno Chile Poppers are a fun, healthier version of fried jalapenos - instead of frying in oil, they get crisp in the oven.

  • 12 pickled whole jalapeno peppers (2 (12-ounce) jars)
  • 1/2 cup Daiya shredded cheddar
  • 1/2 cup Tofutti cream cheese
  • 4 Ener-G eggs
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup dry breadcrumbs
  • 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • Cooking spray
1. Remove the jalapenos from the jars.  Cut 1/4-inch off the stem end of each jalapeno, and set aside.  Carefully remove the membranes and seeds from the jalapenos, making sure to leave them intact.  The best strategy is to use the tip of a small paring knife, and run it in a circle around the inside.

2. Combine the cheddar and cream cheese in a bowl, then transfer to a zip-top plastic bag and seal.  Snip off one bottom corner of the bag and pipe the cheese mixture evenly into the jalapenos.  Replace the stem ends, pressing to seal (the stickiness of the cheese will help 'glue' them back on).

3. Combine the Ener-G eggs and flour in one bowl, stirring with a whisk.  In a shallow bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, garlic powder, salt, and paprika.

4. Working with one jalapeno at a time, dip in the Ener-G mixture, then dredge in the breadcrumb mixture.  Repeat with the remaining jalapenos, then give each jalapeno a second dip in the Ener-G mixture and a second roll in the breadcrumb mixture.

5. Place on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray, and coat the jalapenos lightly with cooking spray.  Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes.

Nutrition Info:
6 servings (2 poppers), Calories 153 

Tasting Notes:
These were so cheesy and indulgent, but my goodness they were spicy!  Of course I should have expected it, making a recipe based on jalapeno peppers, but the hot, pickled flavor detracted from what was a very yummy breadcrumb mixture and a wonderfully gooey, creamy filling.  I would almost like to try using something in place of the jalapenos so I get to fully enjoy the flavor more - perhaps button mushrooms?  But if you like spicy, these fiery appetizers are for you.  I also enjoyed dipping them in the vegan Ranch dressing from Organicville, or in marinara sauce, both of which cut the heat.



  1. If I might make a suggestion, try fresh jalapenos the next time you make these. When pickled, jalapenos can be a bit overwhelming, and they tend to produce a much more subtle flavor when you use fresh ones. (For a real surprise, try to get ripe ones: they're easy to spot because they're bright brilliant red. The ripe ones aren't quite as hot as green, and they also have a very interesting sweet pepper flavor that's rather unexpected. I grow jalapenos just for this, and I'm constantly noting that once you've had ripe jalapenos, pickled green ones just don't have the same fire, pun intended.)

  2. Thanks for the suggestion! I read a similar comment elsewhere, and will definitely try fresh the next time around :)