Sausage Stuffed Jalapeños

stuffed jalapenos

Stuffed jalapeños this way are incredibly, stupidly easy and delicious. No cooking the meat first, no cooking anything first, just mix up some pork with some salsa and other stuff, cram it in a hollowed out jalapeño and bake. So easy a horse on ketamine could do it and horses don’t even have thumbs! Come to think of it, maybe drugged up horses couldn’t make these, but you can.

Not into spicy jalapeños? Do the same thing with mini bell peppers. Bite-size appetizers not your bag? Use the same filling in bell peppers or poblanos for a main dish. Just bake the peppers 30-40 minutes until cooked through. You can also do the same recipe with ground beef if you don’t eat pork.

If you must have a dip, I recommend plain old sour cream. If that’s too boring, you could try Ranch dressing or sour cream mixed with a little of the salsa leftover from making the stuffed peppers.

stuffed jalapeños

Stuffed Jalapeños Recipe – Printable!


Sausage Stuffed Jalapeños

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5 from 4 reviews

  • Author: Hilah Johnson
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 25 mins
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x


  • 12 large, fresh jalapeño peppers
  • 1/2 pound lean ground pork or beef
  • 1 cup salsa or tomato juice
  • 1/3 cup fine bulgur wheat or couscous
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced white and green (or 2 tablespoons finely minced onion)
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons minced cilantro
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • Optional dips for serving: Ranch dip, sour cream


  1. Cut the peppers in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds and membranes, leaving the stem intact if possible.
  2. Set oven to 400ºF
  3. Mix remaining ingredients — except cheese — together in a medium bowl until very smooth.
  4. Scoop into pepper halves, mounding just a little.
  5. Sprinkle peppers with cheese and place on a baking sheet. (Recipe can be made ahead of time to this stage and refrigerated up to 12 hours.)
  6. Bake 20-25 minutes or until meat filling is firm and no longer pink (interior temperature is 165ºF)
  7. Allow to cool 5 minutes before serving.
  8. Serve with sour cream or Ranch dressing for dipping if desired

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  1. FoodJunkie on May 10, 2014 at 4:35 pm

    Hilah, these are awesome and so much better than the frozen poppers with a little sliver of jalapeno. The filling sounds yummy. The nice thing about these is the fillings are so easily varied to taste or what happens to be on hand. My preference is to wrap them in bacon before cooking but I bet these stand on their own pretty well. Bacon will significantly increase the cooking time to get some nice browning. (According to scientific facts that I just made up, anything wrapped in bacon is 67.3% more awesome and 53% more delicious). I can’t imagine these really need a dip to be enjoyed. I wish I’d seen this before I went to the store so I could have picked up some peppers.


    • Hilah on May 11, 2014 at 12:42 pm

      I totally agree, Kim! The frozen or even restaurant-made poppers are so blah – not nearly enough jalapeño and way too much cheese usually. These would be extra decadent wrapped in a half or third a strip of bacon. Love your scientific stats. 😉

      • RON on May 19, 2014 at 5:43 am

        the perfect snack while watching NASCAR and drinking beer ,,,only thing is you always want more ,,,,,

        • Hilah on May 19, 2014 at 11:04 am

          Haha! More beer or more jalapeños? More both? 😉

  2. The Other Randy on May 10, 2014 at 5:12 pm

    I’ll bet if I halved the recipe, I could finish all of them all by myself! And I will resist the temptation to use my never-been-used jalapeño roasting rack (actually it won’t be that hard: going the vertical instead of horizontal route means a lot less cheese on top).

    Since you include the internal temperature, I assume you must have a meat thermometer. Do you like yours enough to recommend it? Meat thermometers are almost the bane of my existence. I’ve gone through at least 6 over the past 3 years. The fancy ones seemed to be accurate, but something like the remote display would stop working within a couple of months. My current one is bare-bones basic, but is inaccurate as hell.

    I wish I’d figured out yesterday that my RSS feeds were screwed up so that I saw this yesterday and would have already tried these.

    • Hilah on May 11, 2014 at 12:37 pm

      Hey Randy!
      I’ve seen those vertical racks but never tried them. I guess it would work just great! Let me know.
      I have a Polder brand thermometer that I like fine. It’s good because it’s got the probe on a long wire so you can keep it in a hunk of meat in the oven and set an alarm to notify you when it reaches a set temp. Though I don’t really check these with a thermometer; I just go by look and feel. I added the temp for people who prefer to check by temp.

      • The Other Randy on May 13, 2014 at 3:52 pm

        Thanks for the link! That’s one I haven’t tried.

        My jalapeño roasting pan came with an unexpected tool: a jalapeño corer. Just like an apple corer but a little smaller. It makes for really fast removal of the seeds and membranes. The downside is that you really don’t want to try to stuff the chilies with anything other than a piping bag. If you’re down with that, it makes things really easy and very fast.

        As soon as I’m able to restock the jalapeños, I think I’ll try making half vertical and half horizontal.

        • Hilah on May 14, 2014 at 4:29 pm

          Aha. I hadn’t thought of the piping bag necessity. Of course that would be the way to do it. Mmm, now I wonder about cream cheese + sausage stuffed peppers.

          • The Other Randy on May 14, 2014 at 4:50 pm

            Last night I went to HEB to buy the jalapeños and ground pork and had a problem finding the pork (I usually grind my own pork and beef, but my freezer is so crammed with food, I really didn’t want to bother with buying a pork shoulder). The HEB on Oltorf puts all ground meats together, so before I realized that, I had combed the entire meat section and what did I spot? Already prepared jalapeño poppers. Bacon-wrapped, no less. Having never seen them before, I thought that you and Kim were exaggerating, but these were the most unappetizing mess I’ve seen in a while. The bacon was almost entirely fat with streaks of lean meat so thin it looked like it had been drawn with a very fine point pen. And I saw absolutely no green whatsoever.

      • The Other Randy on May 15, 2014 at 12:27 am

        Well, as it turned out, I ended up making them all horizontally. I neglected to check the roaster before I went out to buy the ingredients and bought jalapeños that were too huge to fit the holes and wouldn’t stand up. They were absolutely delicious!!! A friend who can detect tequila from 5 miles away showed up just as they came out of the oven and declared them the perfect complement to the bottle of anejo tequila she’d sensed I’d bought. So much for seeing how well the stuffed jalapeños reheat the next day. No leftovers 🙁

    • Julia on January 26, 2016 at 5:09 am

      Hi other Randy,
      I hope you meat thermometer troubles are over but if not I have a recommendation.
      I bought a digital pyrex brand meat thermometer/timwr combo. As I recall I paid $20 for it abt 20 years ago. That’s right I have had the same met thermometer since I was in chef collage in 1997. It has moved all over the country with me, through 10 different kitchens. This is by far and away the best purchase I made for my kitchen and career.

  3. Gene Cox on May 15, 2014 at 3:02 pm

    Hilah, your videos have always been way cool, but they are even getting better. I love watching them. And your recent movies on deviled eggs and stuffed jalapeno is great!!!

    • Hilah on May 19, 2014 at 11:04 am

      Thanks, Gene! Hey I heard about your Texas Food Handlers on the radio a couple days ago! 🙂

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