The joy of these tasty little snacks is that the bacon gets super crispy, the cheesy center gets warm and creamy, and the jalapeno gets nice and tender. It only takes about 10-12 minutes for this magic to happen in the air fryer. If you’ve ever cooked these in the oven, you know how great that sounds, because it takes 30 minutes in the oven.
Jalapeno Poppers are a great snack or appetizer to serve before dinner, or late afternoon when you’re watching TV, or even as a party appetizer. They’re great finger food and everyone loves them. You can make as many as you like, double or triple the recipe, keep some in the freezer for later… whatever you want. Mini bell peppers make a great vessel for this recipe as well, or try these cream cheese stuffed peppers.
How to Make Air Fryer Jalapeno Poppers
Start out with nice firm and plump jalapenos that are big enough to cut in half and hold a scoop of filling, but not so big that half a piece of bacon won’t wrap around them. In order to keep the cheese in, the bacon needs to wrap around the pepper twice.
Cut the jalapenos in half lengthwise. To remove the extreme heat from the peppers, take out the seeds and ribs. That is where the heat comes from. If you like your poppers very spicy leave some seeds and ribs in.
Mix the softened cream cheese in a bowl with garlic powder, cumin and salt. You can adjust the seasonings to your liking. I really love the cumin in this filling, but I know a lot of people aren’t cumin fans. It’s up to you. You can also add some shredded cheddar cheese, if you want.
Fill each jalapeno half with a scoop of filling and wrap with half a slice of bacon. You may want to secure the bacon with a toothpick if it looks like it might not stay put. Bacon tends to shrink as it cooks and it might unwrap a bit. I don’t mind this. It adds character.
Add the bacon-wrapped jalapenos to your air fryer basket in a single layer. Don’t crowd them. They will cook better if the air can circulate around each one. There’s no need to spray the basket or preheat the air fryer.
Cook at 360 degrees for 10-12 minutes.
Do keep in mind that every air fryer cooks a bit different so yours may require more or less time. I always take a look at the peppers at the halfway point to make sure everything’s good. You can adjust the cooking time then, if necessary.
I like the poppers to be soft and the bacon nice and crispy. If you want a bit more crunch to the peppers, shorten the cook time.
Why Use an Air Fryer
An air fryer is an incredibly easy way to cook just about anything. You place the food in a fryer-style basket and hot air rapidly circulates all around the food, making the food crisp – much like deep-frying, but without the oil. You can cook anything you’d make in the oven.
Can You Freeze Jalapeno Poppers?
You can definitely freeze jalapeno poppers, but you want to do it before you cook them. Once you’ve stuffed them and wrapped them with bacon, put them in an air tight container or in a zip top bag. You can store them in the freezer for up to 3 months.
You can pull as many out of the freezer as you want to cook at one time. That might just be a few to snack on, or the whole batch for a party. It’s simple to cook them from frozen, just increase the cook time by 1-2 minutes.
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Air Fryer Jalapeno Poppers
- 10 jalapeno peppers halved, seeded and ribbed
- 8 ounces cream cheese softened
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 10 slices bacon halved
- Cut jalapenos in half lengthwise. Remove the seeds and ribs.
- Mix softened cream cheese, garlic powder, cumin and salt. Taste and add more seasoning, if desired.
- Fill each jalapeno half with filling. Wrap jalapenos in bacon. Secure with a toothpick, if necessary.
- Spread the peppers out in the air fryer basket. Cook at 360 degrees for 10-12 minutes, checking half way through.
- Don’t forget to wear your kitchen gloves when cutting and deseeding jalapenos!
- Keep in mind that every air fryer cooks a bit different so yours may require more or less time.
- You can use a full piece of bacon to wrap the jalapenos if you want. It will give more coverage, but adds extra calories and fat.
All air fryers have different wattage and may cook at different rates. You may need to adjust the time or temp for the best results.