Cheesy Stuffed Jalapeños

published Jan 28, 2022
Stuffed Jalapeños Recipe

This cheesy, spicy finger food is perfect for game day.

Serves6 to 8

Makes20 pieces

Prep20 minutes

Cook25 minutes

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stuffed jalapenos (Jalapeno pepper sliced in half, stuffed with cheese and breadcrumbs) on a silver baking sheet
Credit: Perry Santanachote

Stuffed jalapeños were made for game day — or, really, any occasion that calls for cheesy, spicy finger foods to feed a rowdy crowd. The rich and tangy cream cheese and cheddar filling quells the muted spice of roasted jalapeño peppers. And because we’re not deep-frying these, there’s no need to blanch the peppers beforehand, saving you a step and extra dirty dishes. The best thing about this appetizer, though, is that it’s just as good at room temperature as it is hot out of the oven.

How Do You Cut Jalapeños for Stuffing?

Wear disposable gloves to protect your hands from the peppers’ oils, which can burn for hours. Cut the jalapeños in half lengthwise through the stem and use a paring knife and small spoon to remove the seeds and ribs.

What to Serve with Stuffed Jalapeños

If things get too hot, it’s nice to have some dipping sauces and sides on hand to tame the spice.

How Do You Make Stuffed Jalapeños Less Spicy?

First, make sure you remove all the seeds and membranes inside the jalapeños, then soak them in a 3:1 mixture of cold water and white distilled vinegar for about an hour. Drain them, pat them dry, and proceed with stuffing them.

Stuffed Jalapeños Recipe

This cheesy, spicy finger food is perfect for game day.

Prep time 20 minutes

Cook time 25 minutes

Makes 20 pieces

Serves 6 to 8

Nutritional Info


  • 8 ounces

    cream cheese

  • Cooking spray

  • 2

    medium scallions

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    ground cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    Dijon mustard

  • 1/4 teaspoon

    garlic powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon

    freshly ground black pepper

  • 4 ounces

    sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (about 2 cups)

  • 10

    large jalapeño peppers (1 to 1 1/2 pounds total)

  • 1/2 cup

    panko breadcrumbs

  • 1 tablespoon

    olive oil


  1. Place 8 ounces cream cheese in a medium bowl and let sit at room temperature until softened, about 1 hour.

  2. Arrange a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F. Lightly coat a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray.

  3. Meanwhile, finely mince 2 medium scallions and add to the cream cheese. Add 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard, 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Stir and mash with a rubber spatula until well-combined.

  4. Grate 4 ounces sharp cheddar cheese on the large holes of a box grater (about 2 cups). Add to the cream cheese mixture and fold to combine.

  5. Slice 10 large jalapeños in half lengthwise, leaving the stems intact if possible. Use a small spoon to scrape out and discard the seeds and ribs. (Leave some seeds in the peppers to make them spicier.)

  6. Place the jalapeños cut-side up on the prepared baking sheet. Gently smear 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons of the filling into each jalapeño half.

  7. Bake until the filling puffs up and the peppers are tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Meanwhile, place 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs in a small microwave-safe bowl and drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Stir to combine. Microwave on high power in 30 intervals, stirring after each, until golden-brown, 2 to 2 1/2 minutes totak.

  8. Immediately sprinkle the baked jalapeños with panko breadcrumbs and serve warm.

Recipe Notes

Jalapeños: It’s a good idea to wear disposable latex gloves when working with spicy peppers. If you don’t have gloves, make sure to wash your hands very thoroughly after cutting them and taking out the seeds.

Make Ahead: Stuff the peppers up to 1 day ahead and keep covered in the refrigerator until ready to bake and serve.

Storage: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 4 days.