Jalapeño poppers! They are a classic appetizer that’s always gone in seconds! Did you know you can make jalapeño poppers in the air fryer – in minutes?! It’s so easy, let me show you how to make this delicious, party-worthy snack!
If you’re looking for easy air fryer appetizers, then these crispy air fryer jalapeno poppers are going to be your new go-to snack recipe. They’re loaded with a delicious cheddar, bacon and cream cheese filling then air fried to pure golden brown perfection!
I love to make these air fryer jalapeno poppers for game day (basketball or football watching especially) as well as game nights and pretty much anytime I want the perfect appetizer that everyone will love (must love jalapeños, of course).
Honestly, you can make jalapeno peppers in a traditional oven (and I gave times and temperatures in the recipe card notes) but it takes quite a bit of time. The air fryer is a hostess’ best friend for whipping out quick “fried” appetizers in a jiffy – and no messing with oil or deep frying. The air fryer is a game changer!
How to Make Air Fryer Jalapeno Poppers
Let’s talk about how to make these delicious jalapeno poppers in the air fryer for an easy appetizer anytime!
The first step to making jalapeno poppers is carefully cutting open the jalapeño peppers, length-wise (I suggest wearing gloves for this part) and removing the seeds and ribs to make room for the filling.
I gently cut into the rib-portion with a knife and then use a spoon to scrape everything out. Note: If you leave the seeds in, your jalapeño poppers will be VERY spicy, so I suggest removing them. If you want more spice, then leave a little bit of the seeds in the peppers!
Next, in a small bowl, mix together crumbled bacon, cheddar and cream cheese mixture. This stuff is absolutely addicting, you’ve been warned! You’ll just fill each jalapeno pepper half with the cream cheese filling.
NOTE: Some jalapeno poppers are wrapped completely in a slice of bacon, also delicious, but I find adding crumbled bacon directly into the cream cheese filling is an easier solution that’s a lot faster to make.
Next, mix together melted butter and seasoned panko bread crumbs and coat the tops of the stuffed jalapeños with the mixture. You can use more or less, depending on your preference, just make sure you have enough on there to give it that golden brown crunch!
If you can’t find pre-seasoned panko breadcrumbs, you can buy regular panko or bread crumbs and season them to your liking with salt, garlic powder and black pepper – or any of your favorite seasoning blends!
Now add your prepped jalapeno poppers into the basket of your air fryer, in a single layer. I don’t pre-heat my air fryer for these, as I don’t want the bread crumbs to burn before the peppers and filling are done.
I also add a light coating of avocado oil on top after I place them in the basket. I’d suggest using avocado oil or olive oil spray if you want to spritz yours too. Cooking spray is not required, but I find it helps make them extra crispy!
Bake at 375 degrees F in your air fryer for about 7 to 9 minutes, watching carefully as air fryers can vary, especially depending on how large our basket is so watch for them to start turning golden brown. It can go quickly at the end! I like to open my basket every 2-3 minutes to take a peek!
Crispy, golden brown perfection! Oh, these are the most delicious air fryer jalapeno poppers! Remove from the air fryer, allow to cool and ta-da!
What to Serve with Air Fried Jalapeno Poppers
You can eat these jalapeno poppers right out of the air fryer on their own (let them cool a couple minutes!) or pair them with your favorite dipping sauce. Here are a few recommendations…
- Ranch Dressing
- Blue Cheese Sauce
- Sriracha Dipping Sauce (if you love an extra spicy appetizer!)
- Sweet Chili Sauce
Can you Freeze Jalapeno Poppers?
Yes! You absolutely can, but don’t freeze them already air fried (it’s hard to get that crispy texture back after thawing) so just freeze them prepped and ready to go in the air fryer. Then thaw and add them to the air fryer whenever you want jalapeno poppers!
Can I make Air Fried Jalapeno Poppers in Advance?
Absolutely! That’s one of my favorite parts about this recipe. All you need to do is prep your jalapeno peppers and stuff them with the filling. Then wrap tightly and refrigerate for up to 5 days. When ready to air fry, add the panko breadcrumb topping and air fry!
Air Fryer Jalapeno Poppers: Tips & Tricks
- Want to kick the heat up a notch? Add a few dashes of your favorite hot sauce or red pepper flakes to the cream cheese filling!
- Select evenly sized jalapeno peppers to ensure they cook evenly.
- Wear gloves when handling jalapeno peppers and don’t rub your eyes!
- Want to bake them in the oven instead? No problem, Bake at 400 degrees F for about 18 to 20 minutes or until golden brown.
Check out more easy recipes for delicious appetizers:
These jalapeno poppers are one of my favorite air fryer recipes, plus they’re a low carb appetizer too! I hope you’ll give them a try!
Air Fryer Jalapeno Poppers
- 6 jalapeno peppers
- 6 ounces cream cheese (softened)
- 2/3 cup sharp cheddar cheese (shredded)
- 1 tbsp green onion (diced)
- 1 clove minced garlic
- 1/4 cup bacon (cooked and crumbled)
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 cup seasoned Panko crumbs
- 1 tbsp butter (melted)
Prep and Fill Jalapeno Peppers
- Cut each jalapeno pepper in half, lengthwise, and carefully remove the inner membranes (the lightly colored ribs of the pepper) and seeds. If you want more spice, leave some seeds in. I suggest wearing gloves and avoiding touching your face and eyes.
- In a small mixing bowl, combine together softened cream cheese, cheddar cheese, crumbled bacon, minced garlic, green onion, salt and pepper. Stir until thoroughly combined.
- Fill each jalapeno half with the cream cheese filling.
- In a small bowl, stir together panko crumbs and butter. Place in a shallow bowl.
- Place each stuffed jalapeno pepper down into the bowl of bread crumbs to evenly coat the top.
- Add the prepped jalepeno poppers in a single layer to your air fryer basket (work in batches, don't overcrowd the air fryer). Optional: Give your jalapeno poppers a quick spritz with avocado spray or olive oil spray. Air fry the jalapeno poppers at 375°F for 7 to 9 minutes or until golden brown.
- Enjoy hot with a side of your favorite dipping sauce!