Air Fryer (or Baked) Jalapeno Popper Bites

Air Fryer Jalapeno Popper Bites

There is less than two weeks until the Super Bowl and while I still don’t care about the game, good food is a must!

My sweet in-laws got me an air fryer for Christmas and this felt like the perfect opportunity to give it a test drive. Most foods we want to consume for game days is fried, like wings, french fries, mozzarella sticks, etc..

Air Fryer Jalapeno Popper Bites

One of my most favorite fried indulgences is jalapeño poppers. I love the crispy outside, spicy pepper, and creamy and cheesy filling. I’ve already made skinny jalapeno poppers, but thought more of a jalapeño popper bite would be really yummy to try! And if you don’t have an air fryer, do not worry! You can also bake these right in your oven!

Air Fryer Jalapeno Popper Bites

The key for these bites (regardless of how you plan to cook them) is that they need some time in the freezer before going into the oven. If you skip this step, they will melt while baking. By freezing them for at least 30 minutes, they will keep their shape while cooking. In the air fryer, I tested them for 6 minutes, 7 minutes, and 8 minutes. Eight minutes resulted in some of the bites starting to melt a bit so 7 minutes seems to be the optimal time, but air fryers may vary.

Air Fryer Jalapeno Popper Bites

Yield: approx. 12-15 bites

Air Fryer Jalapeno Popper Bites

Air Fryer Jalapeno Popper Bites
A fun and healthier twist on the jalapeño popper - air fried or baked!
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 33 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 (8-ounce) block plain cream cheese, softened
  • 1 medium jalapeño, seeded and finely diced
  • 1/2 cup shredded monterey jack cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cups panko bread crumbs

Instructions

  1. Prepare a large baking sheet with foil and set aside. In a mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese, diced jalapeño, cheeses, garlic powder, and salt until well-combined and smooth. Scoop about 1 heaping tablespoon of the mixture at a time and roll into balls with your hands. Arrange the balls on the baking sheet and place in the freezer for about 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, gather three shallow bowls. Add the flour to one, the beaten eggs to another, and the panko bread crumbs to the last bowl. Sprinkle some salt and additional garlic powder with the flour and stir to combine.
  3. Remove the balls from the freezer. One by one, roll each ball into the flour, the egg, back to the flour, and then into the breadcrumbs so each one is completely covered. Place back onto the baking sheet. Once complete, put the prepped jalapeño bites back into the freezer for 30 minutes (make sure the bites are not touching one another).

Air fryer directions:

  1. Remove from the freezer and spray each bite with cooking spray. Place about 6 bites at at time to the basket of your air fryer (can adjust depending on the size of your fryer basket, just make sure the bites are not touching one another). Cook on 370 degrees for about 7 minutes. Carefully transfer each bite to a serving dish and cover to keep warm while you cook the remaining jalapeño bites. Serve warm.

Oven (baked) directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees while the bites are in the freezer. Remove from the freezer and spray with cooking spray. Bake the bites for 8 minutes or until the bites are lightly golden and heated through. If needed, you can also turn on the broiler for 1-2 minutes to brown the bites, just carefully watch that the bites don't start melting or burn. Serve warm.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

2 bites

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 371 Total Fat: 11g Saturated Fat: 6g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 5g Cholesterol: 85mg Sodium: 597mg Carbohydrates: 51g Fiber: 3g Sugar: 3g Protein: 15g
Air Fryer Jalapeno Popper Bites

   

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