Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Popper Meatloaf

I’m going to go ahead and dedicate this post to my husband.

If you’ve been following along with my posts, you may have figured out that I don’t like spicy. I also don’t like bacon. Therefore, you can expect that when a recipe on my site calls for jalapeños and bacon, it’s a recipe designed solely for my husband’s pleasure.

Whenever we organize a dinner at our house or go to a friend’s house, I’m usually in charge of the apps. I’m super into cheeseboards and dips and finger foods and whatnot. But, if the hubby is doing things on his own, he usually makes the same appetizer, which is venison, jalapeños and cream cheese wrapped in bacon.

When I was planning this meatloaf recipe, I thought about that recipe and how I could make something that really catered to his taste buds. That’s how this jalapeño popper style came to be.

The first time I made this, it was in a meatloaf pan, but the combination of bacon fat and beef fat that was trapped in the bottom was apparently quite unpleasant. This time around, I put the loaf on a cooling rack stacked on top of a baking sheet. This allowed for more even cooking and no sogginess on the bottom half.

Also, I’ve tried this recipe with my Cowboy Candy and, as long as I pull off the bacon, I find it super tasty! I’m just not into a ton of heat. So, if you’re like me, consider using the sweeter, less spicy version of jalapeños.

For all you heat-loving bacon fiends, this is the recipe for you!!

Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Popper Meatloaf

1 package of thick cut bacon

2 lbs. ground beef

1 sleeve of buttery crackers, crushed

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 egg

2 tbsp milk

2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tbsp dried parsley

1 tsp onion powder

Salt and pepper

1/2 brick cream cheese

2 jalapeños, diced

2 cups cheddar cheese, divided

1 1/2 cups of barbecue sauce

Preheat oven 350F.

Place a cooling rack onto a baking sheet. Lay the strips of bacon on the cooling rack length-wise so they just barely overlap.

In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, garlic, eggs, milk, worchestershire sauce, parsley, onion powder, salt and pepper. Mix together well.

Spoon half the meat mixture on to the sheet of bacon. You’ll want it to be a long thin flat log, about 3″ wide and the length of the bacon sheet.

Slice the cream cheese into slices and place them on top of the meat. Top this with the jalapeños and then with 1 cup of cheddar cheese.

Top this with the other half of the meat mixture. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top of this.

Take each tail of the slices of bacon and wrap them around the meatloaf securely.

Cook for 45-50 minutes.

Pour the barbecue sauce over the top and return to the oven for 10 more minutes. Remove from oven.

Serve hot.

Advertisements

Spicy Jalapeño Cheddar Mac & Cheese

995C7C17-EE8D-4989-AEFC-13A4FDBDB920.jpeg

 

This is my husband’s all time favorite macaroni and cheese.

I have a weird thing about peppers. I’m not necessarily against spicy things, although I do seem to have a more delicate palette than others.  But, what I have found is that I really like peppers that are warm-toned, like reds, oranges and yellows, over their green counterparts.  This is especially true of bell peppers as I really only eat green bell peppers in certain recipes.  But even when you look at the jalapeño and it’s spicier sister, the habanero, I would prefer the flavor of the habanero any day.

My husband likes spicy, period.  He puts hot sauce on almost anything.  He’s willing to compete in any atomic chicken wing challenge.  He dumps red pepper flakes into his Sunday Sauce like it’s nothing.  And, he’s completely colorblind to the peppers, eating any variety he can find.

So, when I’m trying to do something nice for him, I often make up a batch of this macaroni and cheese with cheddar and his hot, green jalapeños.  It’s a bit spicier than I prefer, but if you like a little cheese with your heat, this might be perfect for you!

 

 

Spicy Jalapeño Cheddar Mac & Cheese

 

1 lb. macaroni noodles

3 tbsp butter

3 tbsp flour

2 cups milk

1 8oz. brick mild cheddar cheese, grated

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/2 cup diced jalapeños

Salt and pepper to taste

 

Preheat oven 350F.

Boil pasta in generously-salted water until the pasta is al dente.  Drain and set aside.

Melt butter in a large pan on medium heat.  Add flour and stir to create a roux.  Add in milk and stir until it becomes slightly thicker and smooth  Add cheddar and nutmeg and stir until melted and smooth.

Fold macaroni into the cheese mixture and stir to mix completely.  Add the jalapeños and stir to combine.  Season to taste.  Pour mixture into a greased 8×8 pan.

Bake  for 35-40 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly and browned on the top.