Who doesn’t love the cheesy goodness of jalapeno poppers? But many popper recipes are wrapped in bacon and baked – fear not! With our recipe, you can enjoy the mouthwatering flavor of these Four Cheese Air Fryer Jalapeno Poppers without the guilt.
Aaahh, jalapeno poppers how I love thee! I’ll be honest, I make poppers weekly during football season. Since my son has gone away to college I have restrained myself, quite well I might add. However, I am always looking for ways to change them up.
The classic popper has cream cheese and is usually wrapped in bacon. I wanted something that had more substantial cheese flavor than just cream cheese. I also needed to address the lack of a crispy topping, so I added a light crunch with Panko breadcrumbs.
They came out perfect!
- Jalapenos – the star of the show. I prefer jalapenos that can be eaten in 2 bites, so they are on the small to medium size.
- Cheese – four cheeses go into these little delights. Cream cheese, Cheddar, Monterey Jack and Parmesan.
- Spices – for a little more kick we have added garlic, chili powder and cayenne pepper. Start with a sprinkle of each and taste. You can always add more, not less.
Mixing and Stuffing the Poppers
- To make these delicious and low-calorie jalapeno poppers, the first step is to mix your ingredients. In a mixing bowl, combine all the cheeses. It’s super important that the cream cheese is at room temperature.
- Next, it’s time to stuff the jalapenos. Cut each jalapeno in half lengthwise and remove the seeds and membranes with the back of a spoon. Then, fill each jalapeno half with the cheese mixture.
- Place the panko crumbs on a plate and turn each jalapeno over to press into the breadcrumbs.
- Now we’re ready to air fry!
Air frying is a game-changer when it comes to making crispy, crunchy foods that are healthier than the traditional deep-frying method. It works by circulating hot air around the food, perfectly cooking the exterior without the need for tons of oil.
- To make the jalapeno poppers extra crispy, lightly spray them with cooking spray before placing them in the air fryer, but not the air fryer itself.
- Cook them at 375°F for 8-10 minutes or until lightly golden brown.
That’s all it takes! Just look at how perfectly cooked these poppers are! They are soft, but not mushy. The cheeses all blend wonderfully and is hot and creamy. But the best part is the Panko. Be sure to press the poppers down so you get a nice firm coating.
MAKE AHEAD AND STORAGE:
- Make Ahead: Jalapeno poppers can be made a few hours ahead of time either separately and then filled or the entire baking sheet can be wrapped in aluminum foil and placed in the refrigerator.
- Freezer Safe: They can also be made ahead of time and frozen in an airtight container. Great way to satisfy a quick popper craving.
- Storage: Store leftovers in the fridge for up to five days. To reheat, place them in a skillet, covered with a lid, over medium heat for a couple of minutes.
FOUR CHEESE AIR FRYER JALAPENO POPPERS
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- 6 jalapeno peppers, rinsed, halved lengthwise and seeded
- 1 (8 ounce) Package Cream cheese, room temperature
- ¼ Cup Shredded Cheddar cheese
- ¼ Cup Shredded Monterey Jack cheese
- ¼ Cup Grated Parmesan cheese
- ½ teaspoon Garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon Sea salt and black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- To prepare jalapenos, start by wearing gloves and cutting the jalapeno in half lengthwise. Use the back of a spoon to remove the seeds and white membrane. Set aside.
- Mix the cream cheese, cheddar, Monterey Jack, Parmesan cheeses, Garlic powder, chili, cayenne, salt and pepper together in a bowl.
- Use a spoon to fill each jalapeno halve to the edges with cream cheese mixture, just to the top, do not overlap.
- Preheat your air fryer to 375° Fahrenheit.
- Pour panko crumbs into a flat plate. Dip each jalapeno, cream cheese side down, into the breadcrumb mixture.
- Place jalapenos in a single layer into your air fryer, cooking in batches if necessary.
- Cook jalapenos for 5-8 minutes.