Easy Recipe for Jalapeño Popper Twice Baked Potatoes – Comfort Food on Crack!
Jalapeno Popper Twice-baked Potatoes are the Ultimate Comfort Food – And This Recipe is Kicked-Up a Notch!
I’ve jokingly referred to loaded twice-baked potatoes as “comfort food on crack” before, and this Jalapeno Popper twice-baked potatoes recipe is just that.
They take perfectly good comfort food and add many layers of ULTIMATE Comfort Food on top. Stick around to hear how great this recipe can be.
What qualifies as a Twice Baked Potato?
Generally, a twice-baked potato is made by baking a small, unpeeled potato in its skin, then the flesh of the potato is scooped out and set aside.
The skin is then pricked several times to let steam escape.
The flesh of the potatoes is mixed with butter, cheese, milk or cream, chives, and other ingredients depending on preference.
This mixture is placed back into the skin and potatoes are returned to the oven for about ten minutes until warmed through.
White Potatoes vs. Red Potatoes
White potatoes are “mealy” when baked whereas red potatoes are “waxy” and don’t fall apart when cooked.
So, for this recipe, we choose white (russet) baking potatoes.
Some jalapeno popper recipes call for using red, gold, or potatoes of your choice, but this jalapeno popper recipe is most successful when made with white potatoes.
Can I prep these in advance?
This jalapeno popper twice-baked potatoes can be made ahead of time and either refrigerated or frozen.
To reheat them, place jalapeno poppers in a preheated oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-15 minutes or until warm.
How do I cut a jalapeno pepper?
There are a couple of tricks to cutting the jalapenos without tearing up the skin.
First, you can wear latex gloves when handling the peppers to avoid direct contact with your skin. Second, you’ll want to slice them in half lengthwise so they lay flat on your board. Cut off each end of the pepper and discard before slicing it in half long-ways. After this, you should be able to slice them into circles (or whatever shape is most convenient for stuffing).
This makes 6 Jalapeno Popper Twice Baked Potatoes which will yield about 3 servings depending on how hungry you are!
Can I Make These Twice-Baked Potatoes To Freeze?
Yes. In fact, jalapeno popper twice-baked potatoes taste even better the day after you make them.
You can refrigerate them in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Or, jalapeno popper twice baked potatoes can be frozen for 3 months in a freezer-safe bag or container.
Using a Vacuum Sealer Makes Saving Food a Lot Easier
A vacuum sealer can help you save time, money, and food.
Food stays fresh up to 5x longer
You buy in bulk for less
Food stays safe from freezer burn
Tell Me the Best Way to Use Leftover Potatoes in This Recipe
If you have leftover potatoes – Save Them! There are so many great uses for leftover potatoes. Just a few are:
- Potato Pancakes – add a little flour, egg, and seasonings for a treat that goes with any meal, any time.
- Loaded Potato Skins – leave out the hot sauce and jalapenos, and you are there!
- Creamy Potato Soup – add seasoning, chicken stock, and cream. Emulsify with an immersion blender.
- Potato Salad
- Vichyssoise – So Sophisticated! Mix left-over baked or mashed potatoes with heavy cream, salt, and white pepper. Mix until smooth and strain into serving dish (martini glasses area awesome for this!) chill for at least 2 hours.
- Hash Browns – Using baked potatoes, peel leftover potatoes with a sharp paring knife. Grate them on the largest eye of a boxed grater and fry them as a big soft, delicious pancake. Do you know hashed browns are served as a traditional side in the finest steakhouses.
- Tater Tots
- Potatoes au Gratin – slice potatoes into disks and lay them out in the baking dish. Cover with a white sauce and topped with cheese.
- Loaded Baked Potato Salad
- Tater Tot Casserole – Try this recipe from the guys that KNOW Ranch!
How do I handle fresh jalapeno peppers?
The first thing to master with fresh jalapeno peppers is how to handle them without getting the capsaicin oil on your hands.
Unless you are a pro in the kitchen or bulletproof, you might wear disposable kitchen gloves.
To do this, use a spoon or a knife to cut the jalapeno in half lengthwise.
With a small spoon or a melon baller, scrape out the inner membrane and seeds.
Slice jalapenos cross-wise to create jalapeno rings, and cut jalapenos lengthwise to julienne jalapeno peppers into thin strips.
Why Are Jalapenos Hot?
Jalapenos are hot because they contain capsaicin.
Capsaicin is a chemical that can cause a burning sensation when in touch with skin, eyes, mucous membranes, and even ingestion.
Where Do Jalapeno Peppers Come From?
Jalapeno peppers come from Central America where many pepper plants are plentiful.
Jalapenos – Fresh or Jarred?
I prefer fresh jalapeno peppers to jarred jalapenos because jalapeno peppers from a jar often contain preservatives.
When jalapenos are harvested, they are green in color and then turn red when ripe.
Can you bake twice-baked potatoes in the microwave?
Yes, some of the steps in this recipe could be prepared in the microwave to save time.
Of course, you can bake potatoes in the microwave. You should probably refer to the directions for your microwave since they come in different strengths and different wattages.
Most microwaves have a pre-programmed “Potato” button that takes all the guesswork out of it.
Can I Substitute for My Favorite Cheese?
Of Course! I think any of these would be excellent with your spicy potato dish:
- Pepper Jack
- Smoked Gouda
- White Cheddar
- Pepper Jack Cheese
Tips on Cooking Bacon
This recipe uses crispy bacon to give the potatoes the salty/sweet with little bits of perfectly cooked bacon fat – oh, bacon is so delicious.
For best results, try these tips for cooking bacon:
1) On top of the stove:
Preheat an empty non-stick pan over low heat.
Let it preheat for about 5 minutes.
Place bacon strips in a single layer on top of the pan, with enough space between each slice so that they do not touch when they expand during cooking.
Cook over low heat for about 20 minutes, until all bacon fat is rendered and bacon is crispy.
Follow these tips to make cooking bacon on top of the stove Easy Peasy …
Use a wide-bottomed pot or deep skillet to contain jostling slices.
Don’t crowd the pan with too much bacon, for best results leave an inch of space between each slice.
Turn up the heat and get sizzling! Low and slow cooking will not crisp up your bacon properly.
Cook over medium-high and remove to a paper towel
You can also cook bacon in the oven. Some people say it is the only way to make “foolproof” bacon.
Try these steps for foolproof bacon from the oven:
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place a wire rack on top (may need more than one depending on your baking sheet.)
Place bacon strips on the wire rack but do not let them touch each other.
Place bacon in a cold oven.
Turn oven on 425 degrees.
Cook for 17 – 19 minutes until crispy
Bake for about 20 minutes, until crispy.
After cooking, transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain before using in jalapeno popper twice baked potatoes.
Change It to An Appetizer or A Perfect Game Day Dish
This easy twice-baked potatoes recipe takes a family favorite into a dish that makes it into something worthy to be served as part of the main course.
But if the occasion calls for it, you can use the potatoes for a second time to make Bacon Cheese Potato Skins.
To serve, place the potato skins on an ovenproof dish, (or you can slice the reserve skins into 2 bite strips for “pick up” appetizers) a cup or so of cheddar cheese, and heat under a hot broiler.
Garnish with part of bits of bacon, extra shredded cheese, bacon bits, fresh jalapeños.
Great Dish Can Be a Main Dish or a Perfect Side
Mmmm, twice-baked potatoes.
As you can imagine, Jalapeno Popper Twice Baked Potatoes are my new family favorite thing. They’re complex enough for a special occasion but easy enough for any weeknight.