Game day foods are famously delicious. In my opinion, the best part of throwing a party for the Big Game is the opportunity to nosh on foods that are fried, grilled, dipped, or battered. When I set out to make an appetizer perfect for a football party, I realized that these jalapenos hit on all the major food groups of a good tailgate party: bacon, cheese, spice, and grill marks.
If you are looking for a crowd-pleasing app to serve at your Big Game party, try out these Grilled, Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno poppers. I promise your guests won’t be disappointed.
When you buy ingredients for these poppers, grab a package of bacon and count up the strips. However many strips are in that package (for me it was 18), that’s how many jalapenos you will need to buy.
Each of these peppers will make two portions of jalapeno poppers. First, cut the peppers in half. See all those seeds and white ribs inside the cut jalapeno? That’s where lots of the capsaicin lives. Capsaicin = spicy time. In order for people to be able to pop these poppers in their mouths without having to run for a fire extinguisher, you will need to remove those spicy innards.
IMPORTANT NOTE: When you handle hot peppers, it is a really smart idea to wear plastic gloves ESPECIALLY IF YOU WEAR CONTACTS! You will be surprised at how long that spice will remain on your skin after you have finished working with the peppers. You might think you have thoroughly washed your hands, only to try to remove your contacts later that night causing you to run around the house screaming, “OH, THE CAPSAICIN! IT BURNS!”
Don’t be a hero. Wear the gloves.
Halve all those spicy babies.
Scoop out all the seeds and ribs. If you are wimpy about the heat, apparently you can soak the peppers in ice water for 20 minutes before moving on to the next step. The water is supposed to draw out some of the heat. I can’t verify that because I like spicy food, so my peppers didn’t get an ice bath.
Whip up the cream cheese mixture and spread it onto the halved jalapenos. Pop the peppers in the freezer for 1-2 hours. This step is important! If you were to skip it and move directly onto the grilling phase, you would risk all that luscious cheese melting out of the peppers and onto the grill.
After the peppers have frozen, remove them from the freezer and cut your slices of bacon in half. If you did your math right, you should have one half slice of bacon for each jalapeno popper.
Make jalapeno mummies.
Carefully thread three or four poppers onto a wooden skewer. Continue for all the poppers. This step is optional, but it makes flipping the jalapeno poppers on the grill much easier.
Grill the poppers CHEESE SIDE DOWN for 4-5 minutes. Then, flip and grill the other side for 4-5 or until the bacon is cooked. It’s crucial to grill the cheese side first, to limit the amount of cheese leakage.
By this time, your party guests are probably salivating from the smell of grilled bacon, so get those poppers on a plate! They are certain to be a game day hit!
GRILLED, BACON-WRAPPED JALAPENO POPPERS
one package of bacon
fresh jalapenos (as many peppers as you have strips of bacon)
8 oz. cream cheese
1 T. garlic powder
- Halve the jalapenos and remove seeds and ribs. Arrange the peppers on a cookie sheet.
- Mix together cream cheese and garlic powder. Spread mixture inside of the jalapenos.
- Freeze the peppers for 1-2 hours.
- Cut the slices of bacon in half.
- Wrap each stuffed pepper with half a slice of bacon.
- Thread 3-4 jalapeno poppers onto each wooden skewer.
- Grill for 4-5 minutes per side, or until bacon is cooked.
- Serve and enjoy!
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Thanks, Jessica Hill