Vegan Jalapeno Poppers are the ultimate game day snack. They're also a delicious appetizer for parties. Stuffed with non-dairy cheese and topped with panko bread crumbs, they're the perfect combination of spicy, creamy, and crunchy! This recipe can easily be baked in the oven or cooked in an air fryer. It's vegan with a gluten-free option.
I wasn’t into spicy food when I was younger. The idea of eating a jalapeno pepper actually scared me. In my mid-twenties I dared myself to try a pickled pepper while eating Mexican food, and I realized that I didn’t mind the heat. Soon I was adding them to tacos, burritos, and even sandwiches.
I knew that jalapeno poppers were a thing, but I hadn’t had the opportunity to try them until I found them in the freezer section of the grocery store. I picked up a box and quickly become hooked. I remember evenings in my single days when I dinner was a salad with a side of poppers.
Since they’re filled with cheese, I gave jalapeno poppers up after going vegan. After I learned how to make cashew cheese, I started making them myself. And once again, I’m hooked!
How to Make Vegan Jalapeno Poppers
These poppers are easy to make!
- First, you cut the jalapenos in half and scoop out the seeds and inner membrane.
- Then, you fill each half with vegan cheese.
- Next, you dip each half in panko breadcrumbs.
- Bake the poppers in your oven or air fryer.
Working with Jalapenos
I’ve heard people say that the heat in jalapenos comes from the seeds, but it actually comes from the white inner membrane that the seeds are attached to. If you leave some of it in, your poppers will be on the spicier side. The more you remove, the milder they will be. I like to use a serrated grapefruit spoon to scrape it out.
I’ve filled these vegan jalapeno poppers with my herbed cheese spread. My Go-To Cashew Cheese would be just as tasty. If you’re in a hurry and don’t have time to make your own cheese, store-bought non-dairy cheese spreads such as Kite Hill and Treeline would work, too.
Use gluten-free panko breadcrumbs if you have a gluten intolerance.
I've included both oven and air fryer instructions with this recipe. Vegan jalapeno poppers will cook up in half the time in your air fryer, but depending on the size of it, you may need to cook them in batches.
Serving Your Vegan Jalapeno Poppers
Serve your vegan jalapeno poppers with a little ranch dressing on the side to cool down the heat. They’re a great snack to nosh on while watching the big game. They’re also terrific for parties, movie nights, or anytime you want a little something spicy!
Vegan Jalapeno Poppers
- 10 medium jalapeno poppers
- 1 recipe Herbed Vegan Cheese Spread
- ½ cup panko bread crumbs (gluten-free if necessary)
- If you’re using your oven, preheat it to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Cut the peppers in half. Remove the seeds and membranes.
- Fill each pepper half with about a tablespoon of the Cheese Spread.
- Place the breadcrumbs in a shallow bowl. Carefully dip the cheesy side of each pepper half into the breadcrumbs and place them on the prepared baking sheet or in the basket of your air fryer.
- If you’re using your oven, bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the bread crumbs are golden brown. If you’re using your air fryer, cook on 400° for 8-10 minutes, or until the bread crumbs are golden brown.
- Serve warm.
Other snacks you might enjoy include:
- Vegan BBQ Chik’n Taquitos
- Buffalo Cauliflower Bites
- Spinach Artichoke Dip Potato Skins
- Cornmeal Crusted Brussels Sprouts