Air Fryer Cheesy Bacon Poppers

We are in love with our air fryer oven! And here’s an easy weekend (week night?) appetizer. Air Fryer Cheesy Bacon Poppers are a cinch to cook up for the fam and you can make them in a flash since there’s no bacon-wrapping involved – the bacon is right in the filling.

Air Fryer Cheesy Bacon Poppers Recipe

Cooked air fryer poppers with sauce.

Howdy! Chef Alli Here. Let’s Get You Cookin’…. Shall We?? 🙂

I’m so thankful I came upon this way of making poppers! No more bacon-wrapping in this house, that’s for sure. Yep, that’s delicious and all, but boy is it labor intensive.

I love poppers and if making them can be fast, easy, and delicious – I’m all for it. This recipe is a game-changer!

A couple of my other favorite air fryer recipes include Air Fryer Maple Bacon Brussels Sprouts and
Air Fryer Brats with Pepper and Onions.

If you’re a veggie lover, give Roasted Broccoli Parmesan a run for it’s money and also Buffalo Cauliflower….neither recipe disappoints.

What to love about this popper recipe

  1. Here’s the fastest popper recipe in the land.
  2. No bacon WRAPPING is involved…the bacon is right in the filling. Easy peasy.
  3. These poppers are low-carb and keto friendly!

Here are the ingredients you need 

  • Jalapenos
  • Bacon
  • Cream cheese
  • Woozy sauce
  • Grated horseradish, optional but sooo recommended
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Sliced almonds, optional

How to make Cheesy Bacon Poppers

**Print the full recipe from the RECIPE CARD at the bottom of this post

Combine the sauce ingredients until smooth; chill.

Prepare the poppers by cutting them in half and removing the membranes and seeds.

Make the popper filling, then fill each jalapeno half; sprinkle with a few sliced almonds.

Air fryer the poppers until golden brown on top, approx. 8-10 minutes.

Serve poppers with the dipping sauce.

Answers to Common Questions Asked About This Recipe

Which tools are helpful for making air fryer appetizers?

You’ll need an air fryer, but you can make these poppers in the oven on a baking sheet, too.

A grapefruit spoon is my favorite tool for removing the membranes and seeds from the jalapeno halves – talk about slick!

For the popper filling, I find a small cookie dough scoop works great for portioning. I find I use cookie dough scoops in all sizes for various kitchen tasks, such as putting muffin batter into muffin cups, filling Smoked Sausage Bacon Shots and No-Bake Lemon Cheesecake Bites, plus lots of other things.

Silicone Spatula Spoons – Of all the tools in my kitchen, silicone spatula spoons are what I use the most. They make stirring and sautéing a breeze and I love all the pretty silicone colors available. Silicone spatula spoons are completely heat-proof so they won’t melt, even when used over high temperatures. I like to have different sizes on hand for different kitchen tasks – soooo handy!

For chopping bacon, whether cooked or uncooked, I like using my kitchen shears – it’s so fast and easy.

Silicone tongs are very useful for transferring the hot poppers from the air fryer rack to serving plates.

Whenever I’m working with any type of fresh peppers, I always wear disposable vinyl gloves since the oil from the inside of the peppers can burn like crazy.

Golden brown and bubbly hot cheesy poppers.

Does it matter what type of air fryer I have?

This recipe was created using a rack-style air fryer, not a basket-style air fryer. I use the Cuisinart TOA-60 Air Fryer/Convection Oven and love the dang thing! We use it WAY MORE than I ever thought we would.

You can totally use a basket-style air fryer for making poppers, but you’ll have to make them in batches, cooking a few at a time. It’s works fine, just takes longer.

Can I use other types of peppers for making poppers?

Surely. You could use poblano peppers (though they are quite a bit larger) or Anaheim peppers (aka green chilies) if you prefer. You can actually use any type of pepper that you can place the filling into. The rule of thumb is this when talking peppers: The smaller the pepper, the hotter the heat.

Cheesy Bacon Poppers with dipping sauce.

More favorite appetizer recipes to enjoy –


Printable Air Fryer Cheesy Bacon Poppers Recipe

Air Fryer Cheesy Bacon Poppers

We are in love with our air fryer oven! And here's an easy weekend (week night?) appetizer. Air Fryer Cheesy Bacon Poppers are a cinch to cook up for the fam and you can make them in a flash since there's no bacon-wrapping involved – the bacon is right in the filling.
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 23 minutes
Servings: 16 poppers
Calories: 137kcal

Ingredients

Dipping Sauce

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1-2 Tbs. dry Ranch dressing mix
  • 1-2 tsp. minced chipotle peppers or chipotle sauce, or to taste

Poppers

  • 8 fat jalapenos
  • 6 slices bacon
  • 8 oz. cream cheese
  • dash Worcestershire sauce
  • 1-2 tsp. fresh, grated horseradish optional
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds

Instructions

Make the Dipping Sauce

  • In a small mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients until smooth; chill.

Make the Poppers

  • Cook bacon slices in your air fryer, laid out in a single layer on the rack, at 350 degrees F, until golden brown and crispy, approx. 8-10 minutes.
  • Remove the bacon to a paper towel-lined place to cool. When the bacon has cooled, crumble into small pieces.
    **Remove the bacon drippings from the air fryer tray so you can cook the poppers next.
  • In a mixing bowl combine the cream cheese, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, shredded cheese, and bacon bits.
  • Slice the jalapenos in half lengthwise. Using a sharp-tipped spoon (a grapefruit spoon works great!), carefully scrape the seeds and membranes from each jalapeño half.
  • Stuff the jalapeños with the prepared cream cheese mixture, then sprinkle the filling with a few sliced almonds, placing the poppers in a single layer across the air fryer rack.
  • Air fry the poppers at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes, depending on how done you prefer them, and until the poppers are golden brown on top.
  • Let the poppers cool slightly before serving with dipping sauce on the side.

Notes

**Be sure to check the blog post for tips and tricks, specific instructions, recommended tools, and FAQ’s for making this recipe.
Course: Appetizers
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: air fryer, bacon, chicken salad recipe easy, How to make air fryer poppers, How to make jalapeno poppers

Nutrition

Calories: 137kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.004g | Cholesterol: 27mg | Sodium: 222mg | Potassium: 64mg | Fiber: 0.5g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 316IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 81mg | Iron: 0.2mg


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Let’s Get You Cookin’,
Chef Alli

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Chef Alli

Chef Alli is a home-grown Kansas girl on a mission to strengthen families through enabling kitchen confidence, educating the family cook, and encouraging better food relationships. She believes with her whole heart that time spent with our loved ones and our overall quality of life is greatly enhanced by nutritious food made at home with simple, wholesome ingredients. She loves being able to connect and share this passion with others through her website, her social media presence, and her coveted speaking engagements.

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