I refuse to let summer go!
Don’t put your outdoor grill away yet. There’s plenty of time to grill up a party. Start with these crispy grilled jalapeño poppers. Grill a batch of margarita marinated chicken and roasted sweet potatoes and create your own end of summer fiesta.
I make these crispy grilled jalapeño poppers almost every week for a lunch snack or for an appetizer for guests. They are a little bit healthier than deep fried jalapeño poppers because they are grilled or baked. Serve with cold cerveza or a margarita.
Crispy Grilled Jalapeño Poppers
These are healthier grilled jalapeño poppers made crispy with a Panko topping. These are not spicy if you remove the seeds and ribs. Leave some ribs if you like it hot! The recipe showcases the ubiquitous jalapeño peppers and cheeses of Mexico. There are limited varieties of cheeses available in rural Mexico so I have learned to work with the substitutions and the results can be delicious. I do worry a little about buying raw goat milk cheeses from the open air market where I buy all of my produce. There is always a chance of bacterial contamination when consuming unpasteurized dairy products. As a precaution, if you are pregnant, I would advice against eating local raw milk cheeses. The freshest cheeses can be purchased directly from the local goat ranchers and you can see the adorable baby goats while you’re visiting.
Crispy Panko Crusted Grilled Jalapeño Poppers
Perfectly crisp, healthier grilled jalapeño poppers. No need to deep fry.
- 12 jalapeño peppers, cut in half lengthwise. Seeds and ribs removed
- 8 oz quéso crema (cream cheese), let soften on the counter for 15 minutes.
- 1/2 cup shredded Chihuahua or Queso de Oaxaca (I found cheddar cheese at a specialty deli but it isn't widely available)
- 2 tablespoons of crispy tocino (bacon)
- 1 1/4 cup Panko
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- Step 1 Wash and slice peppers. Use gloves to keep your hands from burning. Leave 1/2 of the stem attached to each piece. Remove seeds and ribs.
- Step 2 Mix remaining ingredients with a fork until combined.
- Step 3 Fill each half pepper with a heaping spoonful of cheese mixture. Mix panko and olive oil and top each pepper with a scant tablespoon of the mixture.
- Step 4 Grill in the barbecue on medium heat until peppers are soft, slightly blackened and the Panko is crisp. If your barbecue has a broiler element then you can quickly broil the peppers for a more crispy topping. Watch closely and don’t burn them.
Variations: Mix in 1/4 cup green onions chopped, chopped cilantro, sun dried tomato or minced sweet red pepper. Substitute chorizo for the bacon or leave out the meat for a vegetarian appetizer. If Panko is not available substitute dried bread crumbs.
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