Monday, February 25, 2013

Jalapeño Bacon Wrapped Dates

Ever since I discovered Bacon Wrapped Dates from local tapas bars and restaurants, I've been wanting to create them myself at home.  But I didn't know how to make them a bit more intriguing than just bacon wrapped around a date... until I saw Jalapeño Flavored Bacon by Farmer John at my local grocery store (how did I not know this existed?!).  And I knew immediately that this was the kicker to create the perfect appetizer.  Not only does the jalapeño bacon still give these sweet dates that same smoky and salty flavor we all love from the average everyday bacon, but it also adds just the right amount of kick to spice up the bite.  And if that doesn't excite you enough, I've paired them with three different citrus yogurt dipping sauces to make them all that more tasty and fun to eat.  The tartness from the yogurt is a great complement to the savory dates and the citrus juices/zest and spices make for a new flavor combo that will perk up your foodie pleasures!
What you'll need: serves about 4

1 small pkg dates (about 2 dozen)
1 pkg Farmer John mild jalapeño flavored bacon (patted dry and cut in half for 4 inch strips)

Yogurt Dipping Sauces: 

1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 tsp fresh lime juice
1 tsp lime zest
1 tsp smoked steak seasoning (I used South African Smoke Seasoning Blend - sea salt, mustard seeds, black peppercorns, coriander, onion, garlic, paprika & chili pepper)
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 tsp fresh orange juice
1 tsp orange zest
1/2 tsp ground cardamon

1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp agave syrup
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch ground nutmeg

If your dates have pits, cut them longways, remove the pit and close up.  Wrap each date a 4 inch strip of bacon.  Place 1 inch apart on a cookie cooling rack (seam side down) placed on top of a foil lined baking sheet.  This allows the fat from the bacon to drain through the rack and onto the foil (for easy clean up, too!).  Bake at 450 degrees on the top rack for 15-20 mins, depending on how crispy you like your bacon.  As you can tell, I like my really really crispy.  Let slightly cool for 5 mins.

While the dates are cooking, make the yogurt dips.  Combine all ingredients (per flavor) and serve along side the slightly cooled dates.


  1. Yum! Bacon wrapped dates are my favorite! Not sure I'd be patient enough for a dipping sauce, but they sound delightful as well. Have you tried stuffing the date with a little nugget of blue cheese?!

    1. Ooh! Blue cheese would be smart because it wouldn't ooze out like other cheeses. Good idea, J! I know they're soo good you just want to pop them in your mouth with no wait. :)

  2. I couldn't stop eating these delicious dates. Yummy in the tummy. <3

  3. Christina Marie, Oh do I love bacon wrapped dates! And your sauce ideas look super sassy and fun!
    I have to tell you... we went to a restaurant the other night and they had bacon wrapped dates on the menu. Of course I was excited to order them. Then I found out that they had been deep fat fried. Why oh why? And of course I couldn't eat them because the fryer was gluteny. Such a bummer. Now I'll go and make my own... with some of your sauces:)

  4. Erin, that's the worst! - getting excited to eat something delicious to only be quickly disappointed. Mood killer if I ever heard one. But that's the fun part about making these at home. They can be made just the way you like them. I thought about preparing them on the stove but liked this healthier method better, and they're just as tasty! Let me know if you try the sauces. The lime was my favorite with these - went great with the jalapeño. :)