Jalapeño Poppers With Cranberry Bacon Jam

Jalapeño Poppers With Cranberry Bacon Jam
You just cannot have a holiday gathering without serving this crowd-pleasing jalapeño popper recipe. Topped with a sweet, savory and not-too-spicy cranberry bacon jam, you might need a few extra peppers!

Jalapeño poppers have grown in popularity the past few years. Even your friends who don’t really care for spicy foods are willing to try cheese-stuffed peppers. Add bacon into the mix, and suddenly they are the favorite appetizer at the party. It’s so easy to dress up your jalapeño poppers for the holidays. Roasted cranberries, combined with smoky bacon and aromatics yield a delicious jam that can be enjoyed year-round and in various dishes. You can simply serve the jam over a brick of cream cheese with crackers for a breezy, easy appetizer. But why stop there? Delight your friends and family with this not-too-tricky recipe this holiday season.


Cranberry Bacon Jam

  • 12 ounces fresh Cranberries
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 8 strips Hicory Smoked Bacon, chopped small
  • 1/3 cup Sweet or Red Onion finely diced
  • 1 Garlic clove, minced
  • 1 Jalapeño Pepper, seeded and minced
  • 1 cup Dark Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Orange Juice
  • 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vonegar

Jalapeño Poppers

  • 8 ounces Cream Cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 cup Manchego Cheese, grated
  • 1/2 Teaspoon White Pepper
  • 10-12 fresh Jalapeño Peppers, sliced open and seeded
  • 1/4 cup Green Onions, sliced thin
  • 1/4 cup Cilantro Leaves, chopped


For The Jam

  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
  2. In a baking dish, combine the cranberries and 2 tablespoons of oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Roast the cranberries for 20-25 minutes or until cranberries begin to pop open.
  3. Remove from oven and set aside.
  4. In a skillet at medium heat, cook the bacon until brown and crisp. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels.
  5. Remove all but 1 tablespoon of bacon grease from skillet. Heat to medium. Add the onions, garlic and Jalapeño. Saute for 5-6 minutes.
  6. Add the cranberries. Using a potato smasher, smash the cranberries until broken down completely.
  7. Add in the brown sugar, orange juice and vinegar.
  8. Fold the bacon back in and stir well to combine.
  9. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Taste for sugar as well.
  10. Simmer on low for 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

For the Jalapeño Poppers

  1. Preheat oven back to 400ºF. Line a baking sheet or dish with foil or parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In a bowl mix together the softened cream cheese, manchego and white pepper.
  3. Fill theJalapeño halves to the top with cheese mixture and place on baking sheet.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes, then broil just to brown the cheese a little more.
  5. Remove from oven and let sit for a few minutes.
  6. Spoon on some of the cranberry bacon jam onto each popper.
  7. Garnish with green onions and cilantro.

Bacon-Wrapped Pickles

Bacon-Wrapped Pickles

  • 12 mini dill pickles
  • 1 block cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 12 slices bacon, halved


  1. Preheat oven to 350º.
  2. Halve pickles and scoop out centers. Discard centers.
  3. In a small bowl, stir together cream cheese, cheddar, and garlic until combined.
  4. Spoon mixture into pickles and wrap with a half slice of bacon.
  5. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake until mixture is warm and bacon is crispy, 15 minutes.
  6. Serve immediately.

Pigs In A Blanket

Smashed Blackberry and Goat Cheese Toasts

Smashed Blackberry and Goat Cheese Toasts
What’s great about this recipe is that it’s uniquely scaled for you, a duo, or a whole damn crew. The blackberry jam keeps nicely in the refrigerator for about two weeks, so this is a toast you can remake countless times. It’s hearty enough for a meal, delicate enough as a snack, and downright georgous as an appetizer.


  • 1 1/2 cups blackberries
  • 1/2 cup blueberries
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons water
  • 1 – 2 teaspoons cornstarch, sifted
  • 8 oz challah bread, sliced (or your bread of choice!)
  • 4 oz goat cheese
  • Fresh mint to garnish


  1. In a medium-sized saucepan combine the blackberries, blueberries, vanilla, sugar, and water (covered) over a medium low flame. Once simmering and the fruit begins to burst (about 5 minutes) gently mash with a fork or potato masher, then whisk in the cornstarch until well incorporated.* Cover once more and simmer over a low flame until needed.
  2. Meanwhile, toast the challah bread as desired — I recommend extra crispy.
  3. When ready, smear each slice of challah bread with a thick layer of goat cheese, then spoon over with the smashed blackberries. Garnish with mint, then eat!

* Add 1 teaspoon if you want the blackberries more runny, 2 teaspoons for a thicker texture!

Cook’s Notes

  • If eating for one, still follow the recipe! the leftover blackberries can be refrigerated in a glass container for up to two weeks, so you make this toast even quicker the next time you crave it.

Jalapeño Popper Deviled Eggs

Jalapeño Popper Deviled Eggs


  • 1/2 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 12 hard cooked eggs
  • 3 Tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 3 Tablespoons cream cheese, softened
  • 1 Jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped
  • 3 Tablespoons sliced green onions
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3 slices bacon, crisp cooked and finely crumbled
  • Chili powder


  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Place about 1 tablespoon of the shredded cheese on prepared sheet; pat into a 2-inch circle.
  4. Repeat with remaining cheese, allowing 2 inches between circles.
  5. Bake for 7 to 8 minutes or until bubbly and lightly golden.
  6. Let stand on baking sheet for 1 to 2 minutes or until cooled but still pliable. Carefully peel off paper.
  7. Place cheese crisps on a wire rack; cool completely.
  8. Once cool, break cheese crisps into smaller pieces.
  9. Halve hard-cooked eggs lengthwise and remove yolks. Set whites aside.
  10. Place yolks in a small bowl; mash with a fork.
  11. Add mayo, cream cheese, jalapeno, green onions; mix well
  12. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  13. Fill the egg halves with the yolk mixture and top each egg half with a bit of crispy cheese and bacon.
  14. Sprinkle with chili powder

Tomato Juice

Tomato Juice

  • 46 ounces tomato juice
  • 3 Tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon Worchestshire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon MSG


  1. Place all ingredients into the Vitamix container in the order listed and secure lid.
  2. Select Variable 1.
  3. Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 10, then to High.
  4. Blend for 1 minute or until mixture is ultra-smooth.
  5. Cover and refrigerate until the flavors meld and the mix is chilled, at least 2 hours or preferably overnight.

Crispy Ham and Cheddar Roll

Crispy Ham and Cheddar Roll

  • 1 package sliced soft white bread
  • 1 jar red pepper jelly (1/2 cup reserved for serving)
  • 1/2 pound thinly sliced ham
  • 2 cups Borden® Cheese Mild cheddar Shreds (divided)
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)


  1. Roll out each slice of white bread until 1/4-inch thick.
  2. Spread about 2 teaspoons of jam over the bread, lay 1 slice of ham on top and 1 tablespoon of Borden® Cheese Mild cheddar Shreds.
  3. Tightly roll the bread away from you, creating a cigar.
  4. Place onto a baking sheet seam-side down.
  5. Continue until all of the bread is used.
  6. Prepare a dredging station.
    • In the first baking dish add the flour.
    • In the second baking dish, whisk the eggs and milk.
    • Lastly, place 1 cup of Borden® Cheese Mild cheddar Shreds and panko bread crumbs into the bowl of a food processor and pulse until finely ground and remove to the third baking dish.
  7. Dredge each cheddar roll in the flour, then the egg, and lastly the cheddar bread crumb mixture.
  8. Heat a large non-stick saute pan over medium heat with 2 tablespoons of butter and 2 tablespoons oil. Once melted, add the cheddar roll and brown on all sides.
  9. Remove to a paper-towel lined plate and season with salt and pepper. Add remaining butter and oil, if needed, and repeat with remaining ingredients.
  10. Serve warm with reserved red pepper jelly.

Cook’s Note

  • Prepare all of the rolls a day in advance and keep them in a baking dish tightly wrapped with plastic wrap.
  • Fry before the meal and keep warm in a 200ºF oven.

Nut and Cheese Gougères

You can portion and freeze these gougères in advance, then bake them just before guests arrive (you may need to add a few minutes of baking time). This recipe makes soft gougères that are custardy in the center. If you prefer a firmer puff, use 4 eggs.


  • 2/3 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt or kosher salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 5 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 cups (6 oz.) coarsely grated Comté, gruyere, or white cheddar cheeses


  1. In a small, heavy-bottomed skillet, add the walnuts over medium heat. Cook, stirring or shaking the pan occasionally, until lightly toasted, 2 to 4 minutes.
  2. Pour into a bowl and set aside.
  3. Position racks in the top and bottom thirds of the oven and preheat to 425°.
  4. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  5. In a medium saucepan, add the milk, water, butter, and salt; bring to a rapid boil over high heat.
  6. Add the flour all at once, lower the heat and stir rapidly with a heavy spoon or whisk. The dough will form a ball and there will be a light film on the bottom of the pan. Keep stirring to dry the dough slightly, 1 to 2 minutes more.
  7. Turn the dough into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or a medium mixing bowl. Let the dough sit for a minute, then add the eggs one by one, beating with the mixer or a wooden spoon until each egg is incorporated before adding the next. (The dough may look as though it’s separating or falling apart – just keep working; it will come together by the time the last egg goes in.)
  8. Beat in the mustard followed by the cheeses and the chopped pecans.
  9. Using a small (1 1/2 teaspoon) cookie scoop or spoon, scoop the dough onto the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches between each.
  10. Transfer to the oven and immediately turn down the temperature to 375°F.
  11. Bake for 12 minutes, then rotate the pans from front to back and top to bottom.
  12. Continue baking until the gougères are puffed, golden and firm enough to pick up, 15-20 minutes more.
  13. Remove and serve immediately.