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June 20, 2010
Smoked Stuffed Jalapeno Peppers

This has been on my "to try" list for quite some time now. What could be better than a spicy jalapeno pepper stuffed with cheese and wrapped in bacon and then smoked for a couple of hours? Hmm, I'm not sure.

I've read that these are sometimes referred to as "atomic buffalo turds" but that doesn't sound like something I'd like to show up to a tailgate with, so from here on out they are simply referred to stuffed jalapeno peppers.

Note: The following recipe is great. However, more recently I've been making this recipe with the addition of hot sauce in the cheese mix. It provides an amazing depth. Check out my more recent recipe for smoked stuffed jalapeno peppers with hot sauce in the cheese mix, it's amazing!

smoked jalepeno peppers stuffed with cheese

Ingredients (for 20 stuffed peppers)

10 Whole Jalapeno Peppers
1 8 oz block of Cream Cheese
Shredded Colby Jack Cheese (from one 8 oz block of cheese)
Bacon (either 20 strips or 10 strips depending on your preference)
20 Toothpicks

what you need for stuffed jalapeno peppers

I began by halving the jalapeno peppers. If you take a look inside the pepper you'll see a bunch of seeds and a white colored "membrane" running down the inside of the pepper. The seeds and membrane are where the spice is located. So if you are afraid of spice I'd advise you to remove every single seed and every bit of membrane. I wanted some spice so not only did I leave some membrane, I also reserved some of the seeds and added them to the cheese mixture shown below! Remember that the pepper itself is not that hot, its those darn seeds and membrane that sets your tongue on fire. It is also a very good idea to wear some latex gloves while you are doing this. Gloves can be found at most pharmacies.

the cheese stuffing for smoked or grilled stuffed jalapeno peppers

After shredding the colby jack cheese I placed it into a bowl. The quantity of cheese is going to depend on the amount of peppers you are making. I roughly eyeballed this because I only had 4 peppers (8 halves). I wanted more colby jack cheese than cream cheese. In other words, you could try 2/3 cup of shredded colby jack (or more) and 1/3 cup of cream cheese. I took about 10 jalapeno seeds and added them to this cheese mixture and then mashed it all up with a fork.

2012 Update: After making these for a few years now I no longer eyeball the amounts. As mentioned in the ingredients list above 1 8oz pack of colby jack cheese (shredded) and 1 8oz pack of philly cream cheese, all mashed together will work perfectly to stuff 20 peppers.

grilled stuffed jalapeno hot peppers

I used a small spoon to stuff the peppers making sure not to stuff them too much to avoid a cheese spill in my smoker. After stuffing the pepper take 1/2 slice of bacon and wrap it around the pepper. You can use a whole slice of bacon if you are feeling crazy.

grilled stuffed jalapeno hot peppers

After wrapping them in bacon I used a tooth pick to keep everything in place.

grilled stuffed jalapeno hot peppers on my smoker

Today I was smoking baby back ribs on my new Weber Smokey Mountain so I had the ribs on the top grate and placed these little stuffed jalapeno peppers on the bottom grate. I left the peppers on the smoker for about 2.5 hours. I think they were done at 1.5 hours but my guests weren't here yet so I kept them on for an extra hour. It is hard to overcook things on a 225 degree smoker so it worked out quite well. I used typical low and slow smoking temperatures around 225-250 degrees for the peppers. They are finished when the bacon looks like cooked bacon and the cheese has melted.

I am sure this could be performed on a standard charcoal grill. Just set up indirect heat with a low/medium heat and place the peppers on the grill. Add a few wood chips to get some smoke in there and cook until the bacon looks like edible bacon. They key is to keep a low heat and take them off when the bacon looks cooked.

grilled stuffed jalapeno hot peppers

These stuffed jalapeno peppers are absolutely amazing and are guaranteed to be the star of any party!

smoked stuffed jalapeno peppers with bacon and cheese

Like the recipe? Want to talk about it or provide some suggestions? Go for it!

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By John Thomas
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