If you’re looking for a simple, healthy snack or appetizer to make in your air fryer, you’re in the right place. These air fryer jalapeño poppers are stuffed with a sweet and spicy cream cheese and chorizo blend then wrapped with crispy bacon. Each jalapeño popper has 5 grams of protein with just 2 grams of carbs, 2 grams of fat, and 50 calories. So get your appetite ready!
Ingredients for Air Fryer Jalapeño Poppers
You’ll only need 5 ingredients for these poppers.
- jalapeño peppers
- fat free or reduced fat cream cheese
- center cut bacon
- Mexican-style ground chorizo
You’ll want shorter jalapeños that are around 3 inches long. That’s the perfect length for full bacon coverage to limit any filling coming out during air frying. It will also ensure you can fit all 10 jalapeño poppers even in a smaller air fryer.
Chorizo, Cream Cheese, and Honey
I used the same lean chorizo I used for my chorizo and potato breakfast quesadillas. I’ve included notes on chorizo substitutions and alternatives in the recipe card at the bottom of the post. You could also omit and use more cream cheese in place of the chorizo.
For the fat free cream cheese, I buy the Raska’s at HEB. If you don’t have access to an HEB, Walmart typically carries fat free cream cheese as well. In the case of these air fryer jalapeño poppers, however, you’re using a small amount and reduced fat cream cheese won’t make a huge difference in the nutrition facts department. I’ve included adjusted macros in the recipe card.
If you have a honey allergy or don’t have any around, you can use another sticky sweetener in its place.
Assembling and Cooking the Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers
In the photo above, you can get a good idea of how much filling should go in each jalapeño. I tested more batches of these healthy jalapeño poppers than I’d like to admit. If you overfill them, the filling will leak out. You want maybe a teaspoon or two of filling in each pepper, depending on its size.
As long as you use shorter peppers, tightly wrap the bacon, and spread each strip to meet the edges of the others, you should be good to go!
I like adding freshly cracked black pepper on top of the jalapeño peppers before air frying. You could add other seasoning options or go without anything at all.
Serving Your Air Fried Jalapeño Poppers
I like serving these chorizo stuffed jalapeño poppers with the simple Greek yogurt ranch dip from my spicy baked chicken tenders and Nashville Hot air fryer chicken nuggets recipes. It’s a blend of 1/2 cup fat free Greek yogurt, 2 tablespoons of milk, and 1 tablespoon of ranch seasoning (like Hidden Valley). If you don’t have ranch seasoning in your pantry, you can use this recipe for healthy yogurt ranch dip.
Other dip options might include this cilantro avocado ranch dressing or something similar from your grocery store.
And that should cover it. If you have a question about these air fryer jalapeño poppers I forgot to cover, drop a comment at the bottom of the post. And if you love these poppers, I always appreciate recipe reviews!
- 5 Jalapeño Peppers, about 3" long
- 3 oz Lean Chorizo*
- 2 oz Fat Free Cream Cheese, room temp or softened**
- 10 slices Center Cut Bacon
- 1/2 Tbsp (11g) Honey
- 1/2 tsp Black Pepper (optional)
- Cook the chorizo in a skillet before removing from the heat and adding the cream cheese and honey. Stir to fully combine and set aside to briefly cool.
- Cut the jalapeños in half and remove any seeds and membranes with a spoon.
- Fill the pepper halves with the chorizo filling and wrap each with a slice of bacon. Do your best to tightly wrap the bacon and minimize gaps on top of the poppers.
- Spray an air fryer basket with cooking spray before adding the poppers. Cook at 375ºF for 15-20 minutes until the bacon is as crispy as you'd like. (Different air fryer sizes/models may affect cook time so check on your first batch of poppers early to avoid burning the bacon.)
*I used APCO lean chorizo from HEB, but you can use any Mexican-style ground chorizo. You could also make your own ground chicken chorizo or use seasoned ground beef, turkey, etc.
**If you have trouble finding fat free cream cheese, use reduced fat. Each popper will have 60 calories, 5g of protein, 2g of carbs, and 3g of fat with reduced fat instead of fat free.
For Larger Batches
This recipe is for an 8-quart Instant Pot Duo Crisp air fryer. If you have a larger air fryer, you can double or triple the recipe accordingly. For smaller air fryers, you can air fry in batches.
For Smoked or Baked Jalapeño Poppers
My smoked jalapeño poppers recipe uses the same ingredients with slightly different ratios. You can pack more filling in without any explosions cooking low and slow at 275ºF for 80-90 minutes on a smoker. I would try the filling ratios from that recipe for a baked version and bake at 400ºF for 20-25 minutes.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1 Jalapeño Popper
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 50Total Fat: 2gCarbohydrates: 2gProtein: 5g