A classic snack becomes the main event with an easy, cheesy recipe for Stuffed Jalapeño Popper Chicken filled with a flavor-packed mix of sautéed jalapeños, cream cheese, cheddar cheese, garlic and bacon.
Stuffed chicken breasts are on the regular dinnertime rotation at our house, especially of the broccoli-cheddar variety. When I’m looking to kick the flavor profile up a notch, I swap the broccoli for jalapeños. But have no fear, Stuffed Jalapeno Popper Chicken isn’t spicy!
How to Make Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Cream Cheese
The key to taming the heat while still packing big flavor into every bite comes down to balancing the fieriness of the jalapeño with a tangy blend of cream cheese, shredded sharp cheddar cheese, garlic and, of course, bacon!
That’s one winning combination that will both mellow the heat and enhance the flavor of these stuffed chicken breasts. The second key to making the most of the peppers’ fiery flavor without igniting your taste buds all comes down to removing the seeds.
How to Seed Jalapeños
Seeding jalapeños is a quick and easy process, but be warned: The spiciness of the peppers transfers easily to fingertips! Wearing gloves isn’t essential, but it’ll prevent any heat from lingering on your digits.
To seed jalapeños, begin by halving them lengthwise and then scraping out both the seeds and the white pith (or ribs), which is what contains the capsaicin (a.k.a. heat!). Then all that’s left to do is dice up the peppers, get them in a hot sauté pan and let the bacon drippings do the rest of the work!Craving more? Subscribe to Just a Taste to get new recipes and a newsletter delivered straight to your inbox! And stay in touch on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram for all of the latest updates.
- 6 slices uncooked bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 large jalapeños, stemmed, seeded and diced
- 3 scallions, green and white parts divided
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 oz. cream cheese, at room temp
- 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 4 medium chicken breasts
- 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
- Vegetable oil, for cooking
- Add the bacon to a large skillet set over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring as needed, until the bacon is crispy and all of the fat has rendered. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a medium bowl and leave 2 tablespoons of drippings in the skillet.
- Add the jalapeños and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
- Dice the white parts of the scallions and add them to the skillet along with the minced garlic. Cook, stirring, until the garlic is fragrant, about 2 minutes. Transfer the jalapeño mixture into the bowl with the bacon.
- Add the cream cheese and shredded cheddar cheese to the bowl and mix to combine.
- Cut a pocket lengthwise into each of the chicken breasts, making sure you don’t cut all the way through. Divide the jalapeño filling among the chicken breasts and press the sides of the chicken together to seal the pocket shut.
- Add the breadcrumbs to a large shallow bowl then add the stuffed chicken breasts one at a time, coating them on all sides with the breadcrumbs.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Add the vegetable oil to a large skillet set over medium-high heat. Add two of the chicken breasts to the pan, searing them on each side for 3 minutes then transfer the chicken to the baking sheet and repeat the searing process with the remaining chicken breasts.
- Bake the chicken breasts until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F, 10 to 15 minutes.
- Remove the chicken breasts from the oven. Slice the green parts of the scallions and garnish atop the chicken then serve.
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Excellent dish. Seeded jalapenos removed any fear of spice and left a distinctive smoky flavor which balanced well with the bacon. Cream cheese makes anything taste better, of course. We are big time air-fryers and this dish was no exception. Next time, I’m going to make extra filling and keep it in the refrigerator for a future quick turn meal or baked potatoe topper.
Yessss! I’m so thrilled you enjoyed the recipe, Lauren!
Insanely delicious! My family loved this recipe so much they asked that I make it again tomorrow!!
I’m thrilled your family enjoyed the recipe, Molly!