Cheesy Jalapeno Poppers

I could easily pop this whole batch into my mouth. We love spicy food so the thought of completely deseeding the peppers always makes me sad. Solution? Stir some of the seeds back into the cream cheese mixture.

If you can’t find the Trader Joe’s seasoning, substitute for 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/4 tsp chipotle powder, and 1/4 tsp salt.

Makes 2 dozen.


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1 tsp Trader Joe’s “Everything but the Elote” seasoning
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 tbsp whole milk or cream
  • 12 jalapeno peppers (the larger the better)
  • Cooking spray
  • 3/4 cup shredded monterey or cheddar cheese
  • 4 pieces bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
  • Optional, for serving: pico de gallo or chopped tomatoes


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a small saucepan or skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallot and saute until softened and translucent, 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for an additional minute. Remove from heat and set aside.
  3. In a bowl, mix together the shallot mixture, cream cheese, elote seasoning, several turns of freshly cracked black pepper, and the whole milk or cream. Set aside.
  4. Slice jalapenos in half lengthwise.
  5. Using a small spoon, scoop out seeds and the membranes. If you like it spicy (yes!), stir some of the seeds into the cream cheese mixture.
  6. Fill the jalapenos with the cream cheese mixture (approx 1-2 tsp per pepper).
  7. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray lightly with cooking spray. Place the jalapenos in an even layer. Sprinkle the shredded cheese over each of the jalapenos.
  8. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the cheese is golden and bubbly.
  9. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Top with the crumbled bacon and pico de gallo (if using) and serve.