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Smoked jalapeno poppers are a popular appetizer that involves stuffing fresh jalapeno peppers with a mixture of cream cheese, shredded cheese, and various spices, followed by wrapping in bacon. The peppers are then smoked until they are tender and slightly charred, creating a flavorful, slightly spicy, meaty appetizer. They are often served as a finger food at barbecues, parties, or other gatherings.

How to Choose Fresh Jalapeno Peppers

To choose the best jalapeno peppers, several factors should be considered. Look for peppers that are firm to the touch, with smooth, shiny skin and a vibrant green color. Avoid peppers that are soft or wrinkled, as this may indicate that they are past their prime.

The stem of the pepper should be green and fresh-looking, with no signs of browning or wilting. Additionally, you can gently squeeze the pepper to test its heat level. The spiciness of jalapeno peppers can vary, so choose peppers that are at the desired level of heat for your dish.

By considering these factors, you can select fresh and flavorful jalapeno peppers that will add delicious heat to your recipes.

How to Store Fresh Jalapeno Peppers

To store fresh jalapeno peppers, place them in a plastic or paper bag and store them in the vegetable crisper drawer of your refrigerator. Make sure to leave the peppers unwashed and uncut, as excess moisture can lead to spoilage. Jalapeno peppers can last for up to two weeks in the refrigerator, but for optimal freshness, it is best to use them within a week.

If you have excess jalapeno peppers that you cannot use in time, you can also freeze them for later use. To freeze jalapeno peppers, wash and dry them thoroughly, then slice them into rounds or dice them as desired. Place the sliced or diced peppers in an airtight freezer-safe container or bag, and store them in the freezer for up to six months.

Wood Pairing for Smoked Jalapeno Poppers

The best wood to use for smoking bacon-wrapped jalapeno poppers is a hardwood that imparts a mild to medium smoky flavor, such as apple, pecan, or cherry wood. These woods complement the flavors of the bacon and jalapenos without overpowering them.

It is important to avoid using strong-flavored woods like mesquite or hickory, as they can overwhelm the delicate flavors of the dish. Using a mild to medium hardwood is generally the most flavorful option.

Smoked Jalapeño Poppers

Smoked Jalapeno Poppers

Smoked bacon-wrapped jalapeno poppers are a mouthwatering appetizer that combines spicy jalapenos with crispy bacon and creamy cheese. The smoky flavor adds an extra layer of depth to this classic appetizer, making it a crowd-pleasing hit at any party or gathering and a favorite side dish for dinner.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes
Course Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 4 people
Calories 77 kcal


  • 12 large jalapeno peppers
  • 12 slices bacon
  • 8 oz. softened cream cheese
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese


  • 4 tbsp. bbq rub



  • Preheat your smoker to 250°F. Mild to medium hardwood such as apple, pecan, or cherry is recommended.
  • Cut off the stem end of each jalapeno pepper and slice in half lengthwise. Remove the seeds and membranes with a spoon.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine the softened cream cheese, shredded cheddar cheese, and BBQ rub. Mix cream cheese mixture until well combined.
  • Stuff each jalapeno half with the cream cheese mixture.
  • Wrap each stuffed jalapeno half with a slice of bacon and secure with toothpicks.
  • Generously sprinkle each bacon-wrapped jalapeno popper with additional BBQ rub.


  • Place the bacon-wrapped jalapeno poppers on a wire rack and place on preheated smoker.
  • Smoke the jalapeno poppers for 2 hours or until the bacon is crispy and the jalapenos are tender.
  • Allow bacon-wrapped jalapeno poppers to rest for 5 minutes before serving.


Nutrition Information: (per serving)
  • Calories: 77
  • Total Fat: 7g
  • Sodium: 153mg
  • Total Carbohydrates: 1g
  • Dietary Fiber: 0g
  • Protein: 3g
Keyword bacon, jalapeno poppers, jalapenos

How to Store Smoked Jalapeno Poppers

To store cooked jalapeno poppers, allow them to cool to room temperature. Wrap the cooked poppers tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Place the wrapped poppers in an airtight container or resealable bag and store them in the refrigerator. Store for up to three to four days.

If you need to store the poppers for a longer period, you can freeze them for up to two to three months. When freezing, wrap the poppers tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn.

How to Reheat Smoked Jalapeno Poppers

To reheat, place the poppers in the oven at 350°F for 10-15 minutes or until they are heated through. Alternatively, you can reheat them in a microwave, but this may result in a less crispy texture. Properly storing and reheating your jalapeno poppers will ensure that they retain their delicious flavor and texture.

What Are Jalapenos?

Jalapenos are a type of chili pepper that is widely used in Mexican cuisine and has become popular in many other parts of the world. They have a medium level of spiciness, with a bright, grassy flavor. Jalapeno plants are annuals that are typically grown in warm regions with well-drained soil and ample sunlight.

In North America, jalapenos are typically in season from July through September, although they are available year-round due to their widespread cultivation and long shelf life. Jalapenos are primarily grown in Mexico, but they are also cultivated in other parts of North America, such as California and Texas.

Jalapenos are a good source of several important vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, and fiber. They also contain a variety of beneficial compounds, such as capsaicin, which has been shown to have anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties.

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