Chili Pepper Poppers with Smashed Avocado

Mr Meatified wanted some “game food” this weekend and I was happy to oblige – as long as it was Paleo. I’m annoying like that. Now one of his favorite and often-ordered appetizers back before Paleo was Jalapeno Poppers. I will also confess that I used to force him to share because I loved them, too. While we’re doing confessions, I’m definitely a “steals food from other people’s plates but stabs anyone who tries to touch hers with a fork” kinda gal. What’s yours is mine, what’s mine is mine…

So I was inspired while reminiscing about those “poppers” to take the good parts of the experience like the handy-dandy scoop-like qualities of the jalapenos (and the “who’s going to get the hot pepper?” roulette!) but to also lose the deep fried tummy-owwie making coating. This is what I came up with. I tend to make huge batches of chili for the winter and freeze it in 1 cup servings, so I had my own chili already to hand – if your chili is already prepared, you are less than 30 minutes away from a plate of these yourself!

So here’s whatchya do. Preheat your oven to 375F and line a baking tray – I used my Silpat. Take your jalapenos and split them down the middle. DON’T chop off the stem ends first – by leaving them intact and then cutting through the stem, you retain the boat-like shape that will keep all your filling contained without spilling onto your baking tray. Like this:

Chili Pepper Poppers 1

Next, hollow out the pepper halves by removing the seeds and membranes with a spoon. Wear some latex gloves while you’re doing this if you can, getting jalapeno in surprise places after cooking is never fun!

Chili Pepper Poppers 2

Fill your jalapeno pepper halves with chili. I found that my coarse ground chili was too lumpy to fit into the peppers nicely, so I gave mine a quick pulse in my food processor to make it more spreadable. You might not have to do that, depending on the texture of your chili. You can also fill your peppers a little higher than these peppers show – a certain someone made off with some of my chili while my back was turned…

Chili Pepper Poppers 3

Put your tray of filled peppers in the oven for 20 minutes, until the filling is hot and the peppers are roasted. While they are cooking, smash up & season some avocados to your liking. When the peppers are ready, top each half with a little avocado and then devour!

Please note: I really don’t recommend you try to reheat these in the microwave. Mr M did and actually set fire to one of the stems…


Chili Pepper Poppers with Smashed Avocado

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“Game food” without the processed ick. Fresh jalapeno pepper poppers stuffed with homemade chili and topped with creamy avocado.

  • Author: Rachael Bryant / Meatified
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 35 mins
  • Yield: 24 Jalapeño Poppers 1x


  • 12 large jalapeno peppers
  • 1 1/2 cups chili
  • 2 avocados


  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Line a baking tray (I used a Silpat) and set aside for now.
  2. Cut your jalapeño peppers in half, leaving the stem intact.
  3. Remove the seeds and white membranes.
  4. Fill the pepper halves with chili mixture. If your chili is too coarse to fit nicely, pulse for a few seconds in a food processor to give it a more spreadable consistency.
  5. Roast the peppers uncovered for about 20 minutes, until chili is hot and the peppers are slightly charred.
  6. While the peppers are roasting, roughly mash the avocado and season to taste.
  7. When peppers are done, top with smashed avocado and serve immediately.

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Chili Pepper Poppers with Smashed Avocado from #paleo #whole30 #glutenfree


  1. I had these for lunch today, and they were so good I ate some for dinner too! A note: you *can* rewarm in the microwave *if* you use your kitchen shears to snip off the stem. I rewarmed 20 secs at a time, and they were perfect. Thanks for sharing this idea.

  2. Great recipe….I have so many Jalapeno Peppers in my garden right now….this is perfect I can’t wait to try it.

    1. Dang, I had forgotten about these – they are so good! Mr Meatified always asks for them on game days 🙂

    1. It’s a ground meat, usually beef, dish made with lots of hot peppers (chile). There is already a big batch chili recipe on the site here, but since it makes so much, I’d scale it down, or try a smaller dish like this first to see if you like it 😉

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