Celiac Saturday: Baked Jalapeno Poppers

September 10, 2011

A quick and easy treat, jalapeño poppers are a delicious appetizer for any crowd! This classic starter combines spicy and salty, crunchy and gooey for an unbeatable snack. Whether you have guests over for a casual dinner or are hosting a crowd of football fans, this recipe is incredibly easy and ready in no time -- not to mention gluten free, of course! Baked not fried, this healthier version is quite the snack.

Tips:

- Make it better with bacon! Add 3 strips of crumbled bacon to the cheese mixture before stuffing the peppers and you're good to go!

- Not into spicy? Use sweet mini bell peppers instead of jalapeños for a snack the whole family will love!

- When working with jalapeños, be sure to wear gloves if you have any exposed cuts or scrapes and avoid touching your face (especially mouth or eyes!) before thoroughly washing your hands. The "spicy" element in the peppers is oil-based and is very easily transferrable from one surface to another!

- For this recipe, I always use gluten free Chex (plain corn) cereal instead of corn flakes or bread crumbs. I take 3/4 cup of the cereal and put it in a zip-top bag and crush with a rolling pin, adding & crushing more cereal to make enough.

Gluten Free Jalapeño Poppers
Serves 4-6 

Adapted from Steamy Kitchen

10 jalapeño (or mini sweet peppers) cut in half length-wise, seeds and ribs removed
8 oz cream cheese (reduced fat, Neufchatel or regular), softened at room temperature
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1 Tbsp Cajun seasoning (or 1 tsp smoked paprika, dash of cayenne pepper, 1 tsp chili powder, 1 tsp garlic powder)
2 Tbsp butter (or coconut oil), melted
1/2 cup corn flake crumbs (see notes)

 
Preheat oven to 375F.
 
In a bowl, combine cream cheese, cheddar cheese and Cajun seasoning blend, mixing well. Spoon 1-2 Tbsp of filling into each pepper shell, depending on the size of the pepper.
 
In a separate bowl, drizzle melted butter over corn flakes or bread crumbs, stirring to coat. Dip peppers filling-side down in the bread crumb mixture, pressing carefully to secure bread crumbs. Bake on a parchment or foil lined baking sheet for approximately 20 minutes or until golden brown and cheese is melty and gooey.

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