posted in 5 SmartPoints

Baked Jalapeño Poppers

This recipe is an excellent one for anyone, but especially those watching their calorie intake on Game Day: Baked Jalapeño Poppers.

One of the most calorie-consuming days of the year for football lovers and party-goers is approaching, and you have to decide how you’re going to handle that “day of food.” You could just write it off and tell yourself that it’s going to be a day of enjoying deep fried fabulousness, endless bowls of chips and sugary desserts. Or you may be one of those people who possess extreme will power to have just a little of this and a little of that, without overdoing it.

Or you might try to avoid the parties entirely, fearful that you’ll blow the New Year’s Resolution that you’ve been so great at adhering to. Or you might choose to include a few (guilt-free) foods that will help you stay on track for a healthy Super Bowl Sunday.

Baked Jalapeno Poppers recipe by

The recipe comes from Ellie Krieger’s new book: “Comfort Food Fix.”

Baked Jalapeno Poppers recipe by

Here’s the low-down on how to make these:  You’ll need fresh jalapeños.  Cut them in half and scrape out the seeds and ribs.  Your hands are going to get spicy… and what I mean by spicy is that if you touch your eyes with your fingers after performing this task, you’re not going to be very happy.

A tip: once you’ve handled the peppers, place hands in bowl of milk or cream to neutralize the capsaicin. Then wash with soap/water.

Baked Jalapeno Poppers recipe by

Fill the hollowed-out jalapeño halves with a lightened up cheese mixture.

Baked Jalapeno Poppers recipe by

Dip them in egg wash and toasted bread crumbs, and spray them lightly with cooking spray.  Bake until crispy!

Baked Jalapeno Poppers recipe by

These “baked” and lightened-up jalapeño poppers are indeed a pretty nice substitute for the deep-fried, evil, ooey gooey version.  They’re definitely not the same as those, but they’re a decent alternative for those who are watching their calorie intake.

Baked Jalapeno Poppers recipe by

You’ll be able to eat four of these for 110 calories and 5 Weight Watchers Freestyle SmartPoints.  And they happen to be gluten-free adaptable too.

Baked Jalapeno Poppers recipe by

I was pretty happy with how they turned out.  The jalapeños lose a little bit of their spice during the baking process (which is good for me since I’m not super big on spicy food), the cheese mixture becomes properly melty, and the exterior develops some crispness to it.

We shared these with our neighbor and he and my husband chowed down on pretty much all of them while watching football.  They’re definitely good football-watching fare.  And guess what?  They had no clue that this was a lightened-up recipe.  I’d call that a win-win.

So will you be serving up some healthy options on Super Bowl Sunday or is it a day of “free eating?” 

I have and USE Ellie Krieger’s other cookbooks: The Food You Crave and So Easy– she is a fabulously talented recipe developer and she focuses on recipes that are a little bit healthier.  In this cookbook, Krieger puts a healthy twist on your favorite comfort food dishes.  All nutritional information is included.

Must-tries for me are her Crispy French Toast Fingers with Blueberry- Maple Sauce, Broiled Buffalo Wings, Chicken and Biscuit Pot Pie, Creamy Shrimp and Grits, Skillet Mac and Cheese, Green Bean Casserole with Crispy Shallots, Corn and Cheddar Spoon Bread, Chocolate Chunk Cookies and Double Chocolate Bread Pudding.  Everything looks so good!

Yield: 6 servings (4 poppers per serving)

Prep Time: 40 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Baked Jalapeño Poppers

A healthy alternative to the comfort food, happy-hour favorite...



  • 4 slices whole-wheat sandwich bread


  • 1/3 cup whipped cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup (packed) grated Monterey Jack Cheese (2 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 12 medium fresh jalapeño peppers, halved lengthwise, seeded and deveined
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • pinch cayenne pepper


  1. Prepare the breadcrumbs: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the bread in a food processor and process until fine crumbs form, 25 to 30 seconds. Place the crumbs on a baking sheet, spreading them evenly. Bake until golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  2. Prepare the poppers: Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray. In a small bowl, stir together the cheeses and parsley. Fill each jalapeño half with 2 teaspoons of the cheese mixture.
  3. On a plate, combine the flour, 1/4 teaspoon of the salt, and 1/8 teaspoon of the black pepper. In a small bowl, beat together the egg and the water to combine. On another plate, combine 1 cup of the bread crumbs, the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, the remaining 1/8 teaspoon black pepper, the paprika, garlic powder and cayenne pepper.
  4. Dip each jalapeño half in the flour, shaking off the excess, then in the egg wash, and finally in the bread crumb mixture, shaking off the excess.
  5. Place the coated jalapeños, cut-side-up, onto the prepared baking sheet and spray lightly to coat with cooking spray. Bake until golden brown and crisp and the cheese has melted, about 30 minutes.


  • If preparing this recipe as GLUTEN- FREE, just be sure to use GF bread crumbs and a GF flour blend in place of the all-purpose flour.
  • Nutritional Information per serving of 4 poppers: Calories: 110, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 3.5g, Fiber: 2g, Protein: 6g, Cholesterol: 45mg, Carbohydrates: 8g
  • Weight Watchers POINTS per serving of 4 poppers: Freestyle SmartPoints: 5, Points Plus Program: 4, Old Points Program: 3
SOURCE: (via Comfort Food Fix)

Here are a few more appetizers you might enjoy:

Disclosure:  There are Amazon affiliate links included within this post.


  1. postedJan 30, 2012 3:58 AM

    favorite comfort food = mac & cheese!

  2. postedJan 30, 2012 4:12 AM

    RecipeGirl, I think I might make these on Sunday. They are so beautiful! I never know what to bring to these events. Thanks!

  3. postedJan 30, 2012 4:44 AM

    Love jalapeno poppers! My favorite comfort food is cheesy pasta.

  4. postedJan 30, 2012 4:45 AM

    Those look really yummy! My favorite comfort food is my mom’s meatloaf!

  5. postedJan 30, 2012 5:00 AM

    these look amazing, especially as my comfort food is anything cheesey/creamy– mac and cheese or pioneer woman’s mashed taters or buffalo chicken dip. mmmmmmm. thank you! xo.

  6. postedJan 30, 2012 5:18 AM
    Kimberly A.

    My favorite comfort food is mac and cheese…yum!

  7. postedJan 30, 2012 5:39 AM

    These look like the perfect finger food to enjoy while watching the big game. Super super delicious.

  8. postedJan 30, 2012 6:00 AM

    mmm… i made a stovetop mac and cheese the other day, and added chicken and sundried tomatoes to it, and it was amazing. i heartily second and third and fourth the previous commenters—there’s nothing like mac and cheese for comfort!

  9. postedJan 30, 2012 6:04 AM

    Mac & cheese is always a yummy comfort food!!

  10. postedJan 30, 2012 6:31 AM

    Luv me some Mac-n-Cheese but I’ma southern girl so a big ole plate of chicken fried steak with madhed potatoes and milk gravy will hit the spot too!
    Thanks for the give away!

  11. postedJan 30, 2012 6:42 AM

    Mac N’ Cheese, BABY.

  12. postedJan 30, 2012 7:04 AM

    One of Josh’s favorite appetizers. I will have to make these for him!

  13. postedJan 30, 2012 7:08 AM
    LeAnn DeBoer

    My comfort food has to be mashed potatoes and really good gravy!

  14. postedJan 30, 2012 7:10 AM

    Those poppers look tasty and like something I’d actually make! My favorite comfort food is probably brownies. Yum.

  15. postedJan 30, 2012 7:12 AM

    Looks fantastic, Lori! We love a good jalapeno popper recipe around here!

  16. postedJan 30, 2012 7:13 AM

    Yes Please!! I love how crusty the tops are, Mmmmm.

  17. postedJan 30, 2012 7:13 AM

    I also love Ellie’s other cookbooks. She has a great turkey burger recipe with green olives, cumin and parsley!

    My favorite comfort foods are usually something cooked in my slow cooker, like potato soup with cheddar and bacon!

  18. postedJan 30, 2012 7:16 AM

    These look great! My favorite comfort food is anything with lots of cheese!

  19. postedJan 30, 2012 7:16 AM

    Yum!!! I like that they lose their heat in the baking. :). My favorite comfort food has to be Mac & Cheese!!

  20. postedJan 30, 2012 7:25 AM

    I always use disposable plastic gloves when handling jalapeno peppers – makes for a quick and easy cleanup!

    My favorite comfort food is anything that involves pasta and cheese!

  21. postedJan 30, 2012 7:27 AM

    My comfort is pie. and peanut butter toast. 😉

  22. postedJan 30, 2012 7:38 AM

    Oh yum!! These sound amazing! 🙂

  23. postedJan 30, 2012 7:41 AM

    110 calories for four of them isn’t bad at all. I made jalapeno poppers a few weeks ago, and I washed my hands with a paste of milk and baking soda afterward. It was pretty effective.

  24. postedJan 30, 2012 7:51 AM

    I love having an arsenal of healthy Super Bowl foods on hand (preferably ones that are not obviously low-fat). These little beauties would fit in perfectly!

  25. postedJan 30, 2012 8:01 AM

    My favorite comfort food is mac n cheese…love it! Oh, and these look great! My boyfriend would probably propose if I made these for him on the Superbowl haha.

  26. postedJan 30, 2012 8:02 AM

    Chicken pot pie=comfort to the max…love it!

  27. postedJan 30, 2012 8:07 AM

    My favorite comfort food is pasta with butter and parm.

  28. postedJan 30, 2012 8:14 AM

    I am always soothed with a bowl of steaming french onion soup with the cheese crouton on top…..

  29. postedJan 30, 2012 8:17 AM

    I hate to be like everybody else but my fav comfort food in homemade Mac a cheese, with jalapenos in it!!!

  30. postedJan 30, 2012 8:18 AM

    I think these poppers look fabulous — yummmm! My favorite comfort food go to is always homemade Mac and Cheese.

  31. postedJan 30, 2012 8:21 AM

    These look so good! I love how they are baked rather than fried but look just as good if not better. I have so many favourite comfort foods but probably the one I go to the most is pasta with a simple tomato sauce! Quick, easy delicious and definitely comforting!

  32. postedJan 30, 2012 8:22 AM

    Always pasta with red sauce and lots of parm for my comfort food. And I have this cookbook on top of my wish list this year!

  33. postedJan 30, 2012 8:23 AM
    Carol A. McNickols

    Thanks so much for the great recipes!

    My all time favorite comfort food is cream of tomato soup with a grilled cheese sandwich!

    My second is fried chicken, Mashed potatoes and gravy. Brings back floods of memories from my Childhood

  34. postedJan 30, 2012 8:29 AM

    My favorite comfort food is peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Also, thanks for posting this recipe. I will be making these for Sunday night.

  35. postedJan 30, 2012 8:34 AM

    oh my favorite comfort food is chicken and dumplings

  36. postedJan 30, 2012 8:34 AM
    Sara Stewart

    Favorite comfort food would definitely be lasagna!

  37. postedJan 30, 2012 8:35 AM
    Lauren S

    My favorite comfort food is definitely mac n cheese – YUM!

  38. postedJan 30, 2012 8:38 AM

    My favorite comfort food is extra cheese, green olive and muchroom pizza

  39. postedJan 30, 2012 8:44 AM
    Lauren at Keep It Sweet

    I love the look of these poppers!

    My favorite comfort food is anything dessert.

  40. postedJan 30, 2012 8:45 AM
    Kelly T

    mmm soup…any kind of soup.

  41. postedJan 30, 2012 8:49 AM

    I love chili especially Ellie’s turkey low calorie version.

  42. postedJan 30, 2012 8:50 AM

    Love the healthy spin on these! Yum!

  43. postedJan 30, 2012 8:54 AM

    my fav comfort food is Chili.. year round!

  44. postedJan 30, 2012 8:55 AM
    Lisa S.

    Our family’s comfort food is anything Mexican or with a Mexican twist…enchiladas, nachos, tacos…bring it on!

  45. postedJan 30, 2012 8:57 AM

    My favorite comfort food is macaroni & cheese. A local Southern restaurant served a gourmet version (i.e.fancy cheese) but w/ crumbled Cheez-Its on top. Amazing!

  46. postedJan 30, 2012 9:00 AM

    mac and cheese!

  47. postedJan 30, 2012 9:05 AM

    My favorite comfort food is my Grandma’s Zucchini Casserole! Sooo creamy and good 🙂

  48. postedJan 30, 2012 9:16 AM

    My favorite comfort food is definitely spaghetti & meatballs!!

    I can’t wait to try this Jalapeno Popper recipe!

  49. postedJan 30, 2012 9:20 AM
    Nancy L

    These look crispy and delicious! My sister would love these – she’s a pepper person for sure! My favorite comfort food is good old tuna casserole!

  50. postedJan 30, 2012 9:22 AM

    I was super curious about this book!!! I think you talked me into it, Lori!

  51. postedJan 30, 2012 9:47 AM

    I love revamping comfort food into a healthier-yet-still-delicious version! I took my mom’s amazing stroganoff recipe from my childhood and made a few tweaks to shred some of the calories and it’s better than ever!

  52. postedJan 30, 2012 9:48 AM

    My favorite comfort food is Mac & Cheese. Homemade it’s so worth the calories.

  53. postedJan 30, 2012 9:55 AM

    My favorite of all favorites is Buffalo Chicken Dip!!! I could eat it anytime, with anything!!! Mmm, mmm, mmm!!!

  54. postedJan 30, 2012 10:04 AM
    Tiffany A.

    Mac & Cheese and mashed pototoes!

  55. postedJan 30, 2012 10:05 AM

    My favorite comfort food would hands down be chicken and dumplings, YUM!

  56. postedJan 30, 2012 10:07 AM

    Favorite Comfort Food? Chicken Pot Pie!!

  57. postedJan 30, 2012 10:09 AM

    CHILI. I love it on its own, over some greens, on hot dogs and in nachos. YUM! And this book looks amazing. Thanks for including CANADA!

  58. postedJan 30, 2012 10:10 AM

    Comfort food for me is either korean tofu stew or Mac & cheese!

  59. postedJan 30, 2012 10:15 AM

    Hi! My favorite comfort food is my husband’s Chili – it’s delicious and the fact that he made it makes it even better!

  60. postedJan 30, 2012 10:29 AM

    I love Ellie Kriegers other two cookbooks, I’m sure this one is great too! Comfort food for me is tomato soup and grilled cheese all the way! These poppers look to die for, by the way!!

  61. postedJan 30, 2012 10:34 AM

    Oh wow, these jalapeno poppers look amazing! My absolute favorite comfort food…perogies! The homemade, super cheesy, overstuffed, fried until golden and crispy kind! Yum!

  62. postedJan 30, 2012 10:43 AM

    I love chicken and dumplings on a cold day!

  63. postedJan 30, 2012 10:48 AM

    My favorite comfort food is fried chicken.

  64. postedJan 30, 2012 10:54 AM

    I just made Goat Cheese Stuffed Tomato Meatballs which turned out super yummy! Very comforting 🙂

  65. postedJan 30, 2012 11:02 AM

    My favorite comfort food is anything with potatos! preferably mashed potatos or shepards pie…or twice baked potato or scalloped potatos….i just love potatos.

  66. postedJan 30, 2012 11:36 AM

    Favorite comfort food of all time is home made mac & cheese!!

  67. postedJan 30, 2012 11:38 AM
    Carol P.

    I love potato skins … complete with lots of sour cream (light or fat free, of course).

  68. postedJan 30, 2012 11:51 AM

    Definitely Mac N’ Cheese, which is good because it is easy to lighten(ish) up! 🙂

  69. postedJan 30, 2012 12:17 PM

    Oh wow…I will certainly try these…they look yummy and I am sure they taste that way too, Thanks

  70. postedJan 30, 2012 12:22 PM

    No doubt about it, my fav comfort food is homemade chicken pot pie!

  71. postedJan 30, 2012 12:23 PM

    My favorite comfort food is homemade mac & cheese. It always puts a big smile on my face on the rare occassion that I make a big pan.

  72. postedJan 30, 2012 12:23 PM

    Without a doubt — PASTA. Of any kind. Preferably with melted cheese and lots of butter. And bacon. 🙂

  73. postedJan 30, 2012 12:34 PM
    Eric @ TasknConquer

    My favorite comfort food is mac & cheese. I love it with velveeta.

  74. postedJan 30, 2012 1:14 PM

    This is a great ckbk. Have done a couple of recipes and they turned out perfectly.

    Favorite comfort food – PASTA with anything. especially seafood!! or cheese!!

  75. postedJan 30, 2012 1:24 PM

    Recipe Girl I have made these poppers sooo yummy! My comfort food would be chili with meat!

  76. postedJan 30, 2012 1:25 PM

    My favorite comfort food is cheesy chicken enchiladas!

  77. postedJan 30, 2012 1:29 PM

    My favorite comfort food is Chicken Noodle Soup. I love big chunks of chicken, extra carrots and celery, and thick noodles. It’s a hug in a bowl!

  78. postedJan 30, 2012 1:33 PM
    Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga

    I wish I was having a party but we’re not. If I was having a party, I’d be serving up some Grade A gluttonous food 🙂

    I’d love a copy of Ellie’s book. She’s awesome!

  79. postedJan 30, 2012 1:45 PM

    These poppers look delicious! Fav: Peanut Butter Toast!

  80. postedJan 30, 2012 1:45 PM

    Meatloaf 🙂

  81. postedJan 30, 2012 1:52 PM
    Michelle Feliciano

    One of my favorite comfort foods is Chicken noodle soup. I love it on a cold day, when i’m sick, or anytime really. Plus all the vegetables and chicken make it a low cal meal that fills you up!

  82. postedJan 30, 2012 1:53 PM
    Maria in NJ

    toss up…mac and cheese or pizza…man that is a tough one…

    Lori I am making the cauliflower pizza again tonight…love it, now can we lighten up mac and cheese??

    thank you for the opportunity to win the cookbook…

  83. postedJan 30, 2012 2:17 PM

    Definitely mac and cheese!! Or pizza… or grilled cheese.. hmm, maybe just cheese in general 🙂

  84. postedJan 30, 2012 2:25 PM

    have to say mac and cheese is the fav comfort food but a big bowl of baked potato soup is a close second

  85. postedJan 30, 2012 3:05 PM
    Lisa Franklin

    I make these all the time! And I love Comfort Food Fix as well! My favorite comfort food is macaroni and cheese!

  86. postedJan 30, 2012 3:16 PM

    Hmm, my favorite comfort food is pasta with homemade tomato sauce. Also a few big pieces of crusty bread to sop up the extra sauce. Yum!

  87. postedJan 30, 2012 3:31 PM
    Angie Beasley

    This looks fabulous. I will definitely be trying this on Sunday. Favorite comfort food is spinach artichoke dip with salty tortilla chips.

  88. postedJan 30, 2012 3:46 PM

    My favorite comfort food – mac n cheese with panko topping! YUM

  89. postedJan 30, 2012 3:49 PM

    Mine is pizza for sure!!

  90. postedJan 30, 2012 4:02 PM

    My most favorite comfort food is surely peach cobbler…it really does heal all wounds!

  91. postedJan 30, 2012 4:28 PM

    My favorite comfort food is any kind of cookie. Yum!

  92. postedJan 30, 2012 4:55 PM

    Definately my favorite comfort food is meatloaf with mashed potatoes-yummy!!

  93. postedJan 30, 2012 6:02 PM

    Favorite comfort food has to be Mac and cheese made with both yellow and white sharp cheddar cheese. Grandma made it best.

  94. postedJan 30, 2012 6:08 PM

    My favorite comfort food is by far chicken and noodles, with homemade noodles. Great recipe, I love jalapeno poppers!

  95. postedJan 30, 2012 6:22 PM

    My favorite comfort food is mac & cheese made with gouda! Super yummy!!!

  96. postedJan 30, 2012 6:44 PM

    LOVE roasted poppers – throw some bacon bits into the cheese mixture for some extra flare! YUMMY!!

  97. postedJan 30, 2012 6:47 PM

    meatloaf and mashed potatoes. yum.

  98. postedJan 30, 2012 7:21 PM

    This is an awesome recipe! I absolutely love my grandma’s baked ziti and eggplant parmigiana, complete with full fat ricotta and mozzarella! 🙂

  99. postedJan 30, 2012 7:34 PM
    Angi McB

    My favorite comfort food is Hot Fudge cake- molten hot from the oven. I grab it with the oven mits and bring it to the coffee table where my girls and I eat it while going “oh…hot hot hot…hot hot hot” I’m not sure if its the chocolate or the time with my girls that’s the comfort 🙂

  100. postedJan 30, 2012 7:35 PM
    Amy H

    My favorite has to be mashed potatoes with a lot of melted butter!

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