What Temperature Should I Cook Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers?

Bacon wrapped jalapeño poppers are a crowd-pleasing appetizer that combines the spicy kick of jalapeños with the savory crunch of bacon. Knowing the right temperature to cook them to perfection is key. In this article we’ll cover everything you need to know about cooking temps for bacon wrapped poppers.

An Overview of Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers

Jalapeño poppers are jalapeño peppers that have been halved lengthwise, hollowed out, stuffed with a creamy filling like cream cheese or cheddar, wrapped in bacon, and then baked or grilled until the bacon is crisp. The creamy filling balances out the heat of the jalapeño, while the bacon provides a nice textural contrast.

Poppers can be made with any fresh jalapeño pepper but many recipes call for removing the seeds and membranes to tone down the heat a bit. The filling is usually a mix of cream cheese shredded cheddar or pepper jack, and spices. Some recipes also add minced garlic, green onions, or other mix-ins to the filling.

Half a slice of regular sliced bacon is wrapped around each stuffed jalapeño half before cooking. Thinner bacon tends to get crispier than thick-cut bacon.

Best Internal Temperature for Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers

When cooking bacon wrapped jalapeño poppers, you need to cook the bacon until it’s fully cooked and crispy on the outside. At the same time, you want the cream cheese filling to be heated through without getting overly melted and runny.

The ideal internal temperature for cooked bacon is 165°F to 185°F (74°C to 85°C) This allows the fat to fully render while the meat cooks up crispy

For the filling, you want it to reach an internal temp of 160°F (71°C) so it’s heated through but still retains its creamy texture.

So when cooking jalapeño poppers, aim for an internal temperature between 165°F and 185°F to ensure both the bacon and filling are properly cooked. Use an instant read thermometer to check the center of one of the poppers.

Oven Temp for Bacon Wrapped Poppers

Most recipes call for cooking bacon wrapped jalapeño poppers in a 400°F (200°C) oven. This high heat helps the bacon cook up crispy and renders the fat properly.

At a 400°F oven temp, the poppers will take 25-35 minutes to reach the ideal internal temp. You’ll want to rotate the baking sheet halfway through for even cooking.

If using a convection setting, you can cook them at 375°F and they may cook a little faster thanks to the increased air circulation.

Always keep an eye on them as oven temps can vary. If the bacon isn’t sizzling and crisping up within 20 minutes, increase the heat.

Tips for Crispy Bacon

Getting the bacon nice and crispy is key for delicious poppers. Here are some tips:

  • Use thin sliced bacon rather than thick cut, which crisps up better.

  • Partially pre-cook the bacon before wrapping around the peppers. Lay bacon slices on a baking sheet and bake at 400°F for 5-8 minutes until rendered but still pliable.

  • Elevate the poppers on a wire rack set inside the baking sheet so air can circulate underneath. The rack prevents sitting in rendered bacon fat.

  • For extra crispiness, turn the oven to broil for 1-2 minutes at the end of cooking time. Keep a close eye to avoid burning.

Grilling Bacon Wrapped Poppers

You can also make these poppers on the grill for a smoky flavor. The grill grate should be oiled and heated to medium-high, around 400°F.

Cook the jalapeño poppers over direct heat for 6-8 minutes per side. The bacon will sizzle and brown. Rotate each popper a quarter turn halfway through cooking to get those iconic grill marks.

Monitor the doneness by inserting an instant read thermometer into the center. Remember you want them to reach 165-185°F internally when done.

If the bacon isn’t crisping up enough from the grill, finish under the broiler for 1-2 minutes.

Microwaving Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers

You can also microwave bacon wrapped poppers for a quick and easy appetizer.

Arrange the stuffed and wrapped poppers on a microwave-safe plate and cover with a paper towel. Microwave on high power for 2-3 minutes, flip them over, then microwave for another 2-3 minutes. Check that the bacon is sizzling and crispy and the filling is heated through.

The microwave method won’t yield quite as crispy of bacon compared to the oven or grill, but it’s super fast and convenient. Just be careful of potential splatter.

Storing and Reheating Leftover Poppers

Bacon wrapped jalapeño poppers can be stored in the fridge for 3-4 days after cooking. Let them cool completely first, then transfer to an airtight container.

To reheat, place them on a baking sheet and warm in a 300°F oven for 10 minutes until heated through. You can also reheat in the microwave.

The cream cheese filling may leak out a bit when reheating leftover poppers, so it’s best to eat them soon after cooking. Refrigerate any leftovers after reheating.

The cooked bacon wrapped poppers don’t freeze well, so it’s best to make a fresh batch if you want to serve them again later.

Safety Tips When Working With Jalapeños

Jalapeños contain oils that can burn your skin and eyes. When prepping the peppers:

  • Wear food-safe gloves to avoid getting oils on your hands. Thoroughly wash hands after.

  • Avoid touching your eyes or face during prep.

  • Work in a well-ventilated area.

  • If you get the oils on your skin, wash with soap and water immediately.

It’s also important to fully cook bacon to safe internal temperatures to eliminate the risk of foodborne illness. Use a food thermometer when cooking.

Top Tips for Making Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers

  • For less heat, remove the seeds and membranes from the jalapeño halves before stuffing. Leave some or all seeds in for spicier poppers.

  • Let the cream cheese filling soften at room temperature for easier stuffing.

  • For creamier, cheesier filling, combine the cream cheese and shredded cheese before stuffing.

  • Partially pre-cooking the bacon keeps it from overcooking and helps it get crispy.

  • Elevate the baking sheet on a rack so the bottoms don’t get soggy.

  • Rotate pans and flip poppers during baking for even crispness.

  • Grill over direct high heat for smoky flavor, then finish under the broiler if needed.

  • Use an instant read thermometer to confirm the filling reaches 160°F and the bacon hits 185°F.

  • Store leftovers in the fridge and reheat within 3-4 days for best quality.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best way to cook bacon wrapped jalapeño poppers?

The oven and the grill are the best cooking methods. Bake at 400°F for 25-35 minutes, or grill over direct high heat for 6-8 minutes per side. The high heat crisps up the bacon.

How do you keep the cream cheese from oozing out?

  • Make sure to completely hollow out the jalapeño halves before stuffing so there’s room for the filling.

  • Seal the halves tightly after stuffing.

  • Chill the stuffed poppers in the fridge for 30 mins before wrapping with bacon to help the filling set.

Can you freeze uncooked bacon wrapped poppers?

It’s best not to freeze jalapeño poppers before cooking. The bacon may not crisp up properly. Instead, store the uncooked poppers in the fridge for up to 24 hours before cooking.

Should the bacon be pre-cooked before wrapping?

Partially pre-cooking the bacon helps ensure it turns out crispy and doesn’t overcook compared to the filling. Bake raw bacon slices for 5-8 mins at 400°F until rendered but still pliable.

How long do cooked bacon wrapped poppers last in the fridge?

Cooked and cooled jalapeño poppers can be refrigerated for 3 to 4 days after baking or grilling. Make sure to store them in an airtight container.

The Perfect Appetizer

Bacon wrapped jalapeño poppers are always a hit anytime you need a crowd-pleasing appetizer. By following the proper oven and grill temperatures and using a thermometer to check doneness, you can achieve spicy, cheesy perfection encased in crispy, savory bacon. Just be sure to take safety precautions when handling jalapeños to avoid burns. Now get ready to enjoy these fan favorite poppers!

Easy Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Poppers Made In The Oven

Leave a Comment