|Boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into thin tenders, then pounded and stuffed with a cream cheese, cheddar cheese, jalapeno popper blend and rolled, dabbed with barbecue sauce, wrapped in bacon and finished with a sprinkle of brown sugar.|
Jalapeno Chicken PopperIf you're looking for the ultimate appetizer, I think that you'll love these Bacon Wrapped Chicken Poppers. They are a bit labor intensive, but simply delicious and a fantastic finger food addition for your party. Inspired by Warren's Chicken Bites in Trisha Yearwood's cookbook Home Cooking, I decided to take bacon wrapped chicken a little bit further. Basically, I married my Fried Jalapeno Poppers with my Spicy Sweet Bacon Wrapped Chicken to create this Jalapeno Chicken Popper.
First I decided to brine the chicken breasts in a salt water solution to help keep them moist and tender. Once you cut up chicken into smaller pieces, it tends to kind of dry out more when you cook it so I thought the brine would help with that. Pat them dry. Cut the breasts into four tenders and then cut those in half, for a total of about 8 slices per breast. Pound the strips thin.
Mix up some room temperature cream cheese, shredded Cheddar and chopped pickled jalapeno.
Spread a thin layer on each chicken strip.
Roll the chicken up.
Dab each roll with a mixture of barbecue sauce and smoky paprika.
Place the chicken rolls seam side down on a slice of bacon.
Roll up halfway.
Turn the piece.
Roll it up the rest of the way.
So that you have a fully covered bacon wrapped little package of chicken.
Dab with more barbecue sauce and place onto a rack that has been placed on top of a foil covered baking sheet.
Sprinkle with a pinch of brown sugar and bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, turn and cook another 10 minutes. Remove, switch the oven to broil and place them under the broiler with the door ajar, just 2 minutes or so, just until browned. These can also be done on an indoor or outdoor grill.
I think you are gonna love these. Enjoy!
The Ultimate Jalapeno Chicken Poppers©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 20 min |Cook time: 35 min | Yield: About 16 poppers
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 pound)
- 2 tablespoons of kosher salt
- 4 ounces (1/2 of an 8 ounce package) of cream cheese, softened at room temperature
- 1/4 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
- 2 tablespoons of chopped pickled jalapeno
- 16 slices of bacon, pre-cooked
- 1/2 cup of barbecue sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon of smoked paprika
- 1/4 cup of light or dark brown sugar
Place the chicken into a zipper bag, cover with water and add 2 tablespoons of kosher salt. Seal and squish the bag around to distribute the salt. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
If baking, preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and place an oven safe rack on top. Drain the chicken and pat very dry with paper towels. Set aside. Mix together the cream cheese, Cheddar cheese and jalapeno; set aside. Mix together the barbecue sauce and paprika; set aside.
Cut the breasts into four tenders and then cut those in half, for a total of about 8 slices per breast. Place the strips between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound them thin. Add a thin layer of the cheese filling to each strip and roll the chicken up. Brush the chicken with a dab of barbecue sauce. Place onto a strip of bacon and completely wrap the chicken. To roll, I set the chicken with the cut side down on the bacon first, rolled it up halfway, then turned and finish rolling, to make a package fully covering the chicken.
Precook the bacon to render fat, but not until crisp. Dab the bacon with a bit more barbecue sauce, place onto the baking rack and sprinkle tops with a little bit of brown sugar. Bake at 400 degrees F, for 20 minutes, turn, cook 10 minutes longer, turn. Turn on broiler, place under broiler, with the door ajar, for about 2 - 3 minutes. Can also be cooked on an inside grill or outside grill, using indirect heat. Secure bacon with pre-soaked toothpicks if grilling.
Each breast should make about 8 chicken poppers, depending on the size.
Tip: To crisp up the bacon further, start with par-cooked bacon, then finish these poppers under a preheated broiler, leaving the oven door ajar, just long enough to crisp. Turn and repeat if desired.
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