Nana does Superbowl! Fried Stuffed Jalapenos (aka Jalapeno Poppers)

by Sarah on February 1, 2011

Day 2 of Nana’s Superbowl preparation. We’re venturing into fried foods territory today. Are you ready?

Oh Nana, she’s sticking her tongue out at us again.

As you can see from the recipe (below), Nana got this recipe from her sister Kay (above), who is the Mrs. Major General on the notepaper (below).

The Major General and family lived on the same street as Nana and Boppa for a little while when the Army sent him back to school in the Bay Area, but mostly I think that he, Aunt Kay, and their 4 kids were globetrotters, like most military families.

Nana and Aunt Kay shared a lot of recipes over the years.  Often I’m not sure whose are whose.  And cookbooks!  Just wait till I start sharing all the random Junior League cookbooks Kay sent Nana!  I’ve got a million.  Favorites such as “The West Point Hostess, volumes I-III”.

These are actually pretty simple to make.  The recipe calls for canned whole jalapenos, but because my kid wanted spicy, I tried to make them this time with fresh jalapenos.  I’m not sure this was the best choice.  If I were you, I’d stick with the canned ones.

I like that this recipe calls for Muenster cheese, rather than cream cheese–I always burn my mouth on the damned hot cream cheese!    It never fails to just explode and burn the hell out of your entire mouth.  Hey, but there’s not anything wrong with that, if that’s what you’re into.  You could probably use a combination if you like that molten-lava-burning-your-tongue-off experience.

I took some liberties with these (sorry Nana, but I think you’d approve) by adding bacon.  I just mixed 1/2 piece of bacon with the cheese per pepper.  I did some plain cheese ones too.

Set up a breading station, just like you do with fried chicken.  Roll the peppers first in the flour and cornmeal mixture, then dip in the beaten egg, then back into the flour and cornmeal mixture.  This is where the canned peppers are superior.  The breading just doesn’t stick to the slippery outside of a jalapeno.

Shallow fry these in vegetable oil.  Since they were fresh, I tried to keep these in the pan as long as possible.  With the canned peppers, you can basically just brown them and the cheese will be melted.  When they’re done, let them rest on a paper towel for a minute.

I made a little cumin-flavored sour cream to dip ‘em in. I had to!  Those fresh peppers were pretty hot.

Nana's Fried Stuffed Jalapenos (aka Jalapeno Poppers)


  • 1 large can whole jalapenos, or use fresh if you can handle the heat
  • 2 cups grated Muenster cheese
  • 6 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (optional)
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 egg, beaten


  • Mix the crumbled bacon and cheese together, if using bacon. Remove the seeds and membrane from jalapenos. Stuff peppers with the cheese mixture.
  • Mix cornmeal and flour together in a bowl. Beat the egg in a second bowl. Bread the jalapenos by dipping in the flour mixture first, then egg, then back into the flour.
  • Meanwhile, heat 1/2" vegetable oil in a frying pan. Fry the breaded peppers in the hot oil (350*) until browned. If using fresh peppers, you may want to use a lower temperature (325*) and cook the peppers a little longer.
  • Drain on paper towels. Serve with sour cream, flavored with a little ground cumin.

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