Pork Belly, Jalapeno and Duck Breast Poppers

Don’t run off!!

I know these ingredients aren’t the norm in the everyday kitchen.  Heck, they aren’t even easy to get around here, but believe me – If I can get them, YOU can get them.  And I didn’t even have to search long and hard.  And I will tell you something else…the search will be worth every second.

A couple of weeks ago, I finally sat down and watched a little television.  That doesn’t happen a lot – I rarely get to watch TV.  But, Jon and I were perched in the kitchen watching a little Triple D – That’s Guy Fieri’s Diners, Drive Ins and Dives for those of you not in the know – when a segment came on about these amazing duck poppers.


I sat, open-mouthed, during the entire segment. Literally, I couldn’t close my mouth.

A cream cheese filling and a bit of jalapeno, wrapped in duck breast, and then wrapped in bacon.

I mean, really.

I took it up a notch though, believe it or not.  I used pork belly instead of bacon. Sure, you can use bacon, but if you can get your hands on the belly, do it.

And then duck?

Have you even HAD duck breast?  I hadn’t, not until last year.  I finally found a local vendor who sells it, and it was gorgeous.  The flavor is meaty – like a red meat, but to me, a little like turkey as well, if that makes any sense at all.  It’s delicious, and that’s what you need to know.  So, to be paired with jalapeno and bacon?  Well, I am a goner.

I think you will be, too.


These poppers are HUGE.  I cut each one into about 4 bite sized pieces, and that’s perfect for us.  I really can’t wait until football season, as I think all of the tailgaters we hang out with will go nuts over these.  Of course, they would also be great at any appetizer event.  Tender, creamy, just a little spicy (just a little, really!), salty, and ever so incredibly delicious.

Now – please, do as I say, and not what you see in the photos.  In these pictures, we added only a small ring of jalapeno.  For me (and I’m not a huge hot pepper lover) – it needs MORE.  So, not pictured here are poppers made with half of a jalapeno.  Do that.  Follow the recipe.  That amount of pepper offers the most flavor, it pairs perfectly with the other notes in the recipe, and well – it’s just the right thing to do.

Make them.  Love them.

Thank me later.


Pork Belly, Jalapeno and Duck Breast Poppers

makes 16 poppers


  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 8 Jalapenos, halved & seeded
  • 2 pounds duck breast, sliced thin
  • 16 slices pork belly or bacon
  • 8 skewers (2 poppers each)


  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Combine cream cheese and spices in small bowl. Spoon mixture into each pepper half, until level.
  3. Wrap each in sliced duck breast, then wrap in pork belly or bacon, and place on baking sheet. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until bacon is done. Remove, slice,  and enjoy!




Yes, you can grill these, and that’s what we intended to do, but alas, it was cold outside, and the gas grill didn’t want to cooperate.  So what to do?

Broil them. 

So into Gilda, my KitchenAid range they went.  I love that it has a meat thermometer built in to the range, and it keeps track of the temperature of the meat.  No guesswork, no having to keep pulling the tray in and out to test the temp.  It just does the work for me, then beeeeeeps when its done.  And – it STEAMS.


I like when things are made easier. And fancier.

So – broil them, grill them, or even fry them if you like.  Just take note – if you do grill them, lay down aluminum foil, as the fat will definitely cause a lot of burning.  You won’t want that.

However you decide to make them – MAKE THEM!

Now – have a great week everyone!

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