If you’ve ever had a jalapeño popper – a cream cheese-stuffed, occasionally deep-fried or bacon-wrapped jalapeño – you’ll know how completely addicting it is. We always start out meaning to just have one or two, but then somehow we end up losing track around the fifth or sixth one, they’re just that good. Here, we wanted to find a way to turn our favorite bar food into an actual meal, and we’ve gotta say, we were pretty thrilled with the results!
Using chicken breasts as the anchor of this recipe, we take all the original components of the popper (jalapeño and cream cheese are the stars of the show) and put everything together in a way that’s deliciously crispy and decadently cheesy…you’ll be hooked after the first bite!
Jalapeño Popper Chicken
45 minutes to prepare serves 4
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 2 jalapeños, ribs and seeds removed, minced
- 1 large egg
- 1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, room temperature
- 3/4 cup panko or seasoned breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup mexican cheese blend, grated
- 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon taco seasoning
- kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 375º F and lightly grease a baking dish with nonstick spray.
- Melt butter in a medium pan over medium heat and sauté panko breadcrumbs, stirring continuously to avoid burning, until golden brown. 4-5 minutes.
- Remove from heat and place panko in a shallow bowl. Whisk in taco seasoning until incorporated.
- In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, mexican cheese blend and minced jalapeño.
- Using a sharp knife, cut chicken breasts horizontally until almost butterflied (creating a pocket in the center), then scoop 1/4 cup cream cheese jalapeño mixture into the center of each chicken breast.
- If necessary, use a toothpick to keep filling in, then season both sides of chicken generously with salt and pepper.
- Beat egg in a shallow bowl or dish and set next to the breadcrumbs. Dip each stuffed chicken breast in beaten egg, shake off excess, then press into taco-seasoned panko, pressing firmly so it adheres.
- Transfer coated chicken breast to greased baking sheet and continue with remaining chicken.
- Place baking sheet in oven and bake for 30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. Recipe adapted from Key Ingredient
Recipe adapted from Key Ingredient