The Best Jalapeno Poppers

With football season approaching, these lightened-up baked jalapeño poppers will be the ideal party appetizer or snack. Spicy and excellent!

Jalapeno Poppers

Jalapeno Poppers

Years ago, one of my amazing readers requested that I produce a healthier Jalapeno Popper recipe. I was thrilled to take on the challenge since I like jalapeño poppers. The jalapenos are packed with cream cheese, scallions, and cheese, then coated in panko and baked till hot and delicious.

Jalapeno Poppers

Jalapeno Poppers Ingredients

  • Jalapenos: Cut 12 in half lengthwise.
  • Cheese: You will need light cream cheese and low-fat shredded sharp cheddar.
  • Scallions or green onions: Slice the green sections and save the white pieces for another use.
  • Eggs: Egg beaters or whipped egg whites help the breadcrumbs adhere to the peppers.
  • Panko: I used a half cup of panko to ensure that they stuck to the peppers. You won’t use it all, so simply discard the remainder.
  • Spices: Paprika, garlic powder, chili powder, salt, and black pepper

How to Make Jalapeno Poppers

  • Prep: Preheat the oven to 350°F. For easy cleanup, spray a baking sheet with oil or line it with parchment paper.
  • Cut the jalapenos: Wearing disposable gloves, cut the peppers in half lengthwise and remove the seeds and membranes.
  • Cheese Mixture: Mix together cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and onions in a bowl.
  • Seasoned Panko: In a bowl, combine the panko and the seasonings.
  • Stuff the Jalapenos with the cheese filling using a small spoon or spatula.
  • Bread the jalapenos: Dip them in egg beaters, then in panko. To prevent the seasoning from falling to the bottom of the bowl, use a spoon to scoop the panko onto the peppers. Place them on the prepared baking sheet and lightly coat the tops with oil.

How Long to Bake Jalapeno Poppers in the Oven

Bake the peppers for 20 to 25 minutes, or until brown and the cheese has oozed out. Take them out of the oven and serve immediately. To make cleanup easier, line the baking pan with aluminum foil.


  • Breadcrumbs: Panko will produce the crispiest poppers, but normal breadcrumbs can be used if desired.
  • Low-Carb Jalapeño Poppers: To make low-carb jalapeño poppers, wrap them in bacon instead of breadcrumbs.
  • Gluten-free jalapeño. For the poppers, use gluten-free panko.
  • If you want a dipping sauce, serve with ranch dressing.

How to Store Jalapeño Poppers

Jalapeño poppers are best eaten hot, straight out of the oven. Leftovers may be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 days and warmed in an air fryer, microwave, or oven until warm.


Are jalapeño poppers unhealthy?

To make jalapeño poppers healthier, I use reduced-fat cheddar and cream cheese. Two filled poppers contain only 111 calories, are low in carbohydrates, and high in protein.

Should you use gloves while chopping jalapenos?

Yes, you should wear gloves while handling jalapenos. Avoid touching your eyes or lips with jalapeño fingers – I’ve done it! Also, if you have little children, make sure to throw any seeds that fall to the floor. When my girls were toddlers, they had a knack for picking up every crumb on the floor and putting it in their mouths.

How do you make the batter stick to the jalapeño poppers?

The egg whites help the panko mixture adhere to the jalapenos. Also, you may use a fork to press the crumbs over the peppers carefully.

Can you make jalapeno poppers ahead of time?

If you’re serving these simple baked jalapeño poppers at a party, slice the peppers, prepare the cheese and panko mixes, and load the jalapenos with cheese the day before. Dip them in egg and panko and bake before guests come. Because the poppers include cheese, they can only be left out at room temperature for up to two hours.

Jalapeno Poppers

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Recipe Card

Jalapeno Popper Recipe

Jalapeno Popper Recipe

With football season approaching, these lightened-up baked jalapeno poppers will be the ideal party snack.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Appetizer
Cuisine tex mex
Servings 12


  • 12 jalapeno peppers sliced in half lengthwise
  • 4.5 oz light cream cheese
  • 5 medium scallions green part only, sliced
  • 2 oz shredded low fat sharp cheddar I used Cabot 50%
  • 1/2 cup egg beaters or egg whites beaten
  • 1/2 cup panko crumbs*
  • 1/8 tsp paprika
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp chili powder
  • salt and fresh pepper
  • spray oil


  • Preheat the oven to 350F.
  • Wearing rubber gloves, cut peppers in half lengthwise and remove the seeds and membrane.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the cream cheese, cheddar, and onions.
  • In another bowl, mix together the panko, paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
  • Fill the peppers with the cheese filling using a small spoon or spatula.
  • Dip the peppers in the egg beaters.
  • Place pepper in panko mixture, using a spoon to keep the seasoning from falling to the bottom of the bowl.
  • Coat a baking pan with oil spray. (I lined my pan with parchment paper for ease cleaning.)
  • Lightly coat the peppers with extra oil spray.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes, until brown and the cheese flows out. Remove from the oven and serve immediately. Serve hot*.I used 1/4 cup additional panko to make it easier to coat, leaving 1/4 cup that was trashed and not included in the nutritional information.
Keyword Jalapeno Popper Recipe

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