These three ingredient Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Dates are an easy and irresistible hot appetizer that delivers big on flavour. Serve this sweet and savoury appetizer on a charcuterie board at any holiday gathering, potluck, gameday, or dinner party.
Finger food, Appys, Tapas, Pintxos, Hors d’oeuvres, Canapés, Starters…no matter what you call them, the best appetizers are a one bite trip to flavour town. These delicate Mushroom Goat Cheese Filo Parcels and Crispy Panko Fried Coconut Shrimp will get the party started…guaranteed!
Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Dates
Let’s be honest, most people will eat anything wrapped in bacon. Bacon is tasty and full of that smoky flavour that compliments everything. However, the combination of smoky bacon with sweet dates and sharp, earthy goat cheese is out-of-this-world good.
How can a recipe with only three ingredients have so much flavour? It’s simple, each ingredient is here to PLAY. When you take three ingredients that individually already have bags of flavour and combine them, the result is phenomenal.
Devils on Horseback and Dátiles Rellenos
Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Dates, also known as Devils on Horseback are most likely a dried fruit-based version of the French ‘Angels on Horseback’. Dates, or prunes replace the oyster but the cooking method is the same. The Brits have enjoyed them for centuries as brandy soaked prunes stuffed with chutney or an almond.
The method of stuffing fruits or vegetables with cheese can be found in many countries. However, cheese stuffed dates are a common pintxos (or appetizer) in the bars and taverns of the Basque region of Northern Spain. There, they are often stuffed with manchego cheese and wrapped in jamón serrano. If that doesn’t that make your mouth water, I don’t know what will.
How Stuffed Dates became a popular 1970’s North American appetizer is anyone’s guess. It’s a testament to how delicious this little bite is. If you are like me, you travel for food and if you can’t travel…you travel through food!
Though there are only three ingredients in this recipe, each one brings the flavour! It is important to buy the best ingredients you can when there are so few ingredients in a recipe. As you can see, this appetizer is also gluten free.
- Goat Cheese
Buy thin cut bacon for this recipe. It cooks quicker and crisps up much easier than thick cut bacon. Substitute serrano ham or prosciutto to make it extra fancy.
Try to find large, plump whole dates such as Medjool dates. It’s better to remove the pits yourself as you will have control over the size and position of the opening in the date.
Soft Goat cheese, or chèvre, works best in this recipe because it is creamy and just a little bit acidic. It cuts through the richness and makes your mouth sing. Other cheeses that would also work include Manchego, Blue Cheese, or even Cream Cheese.
How to Make Stuffed Dates
Inspect the dates. Use only large, plump, unpitted dates such as Medjool dates. To remove the pits, make a lengthwise slit along the side of the dates. Remove the pits, then discard them.
To stuff the date, use a spoon to fill it with 1/2-1 teaspoon room temperature goat cheese. Then pinch it together to close. It’s okay if some filling is sticking out, it doesn’t need to be completely sealed. Alternatively, you can place the goat cheese in a piping bag and pipe it into the center of each date.
Next, cut the bacon slices in half and wrap one half slice around a stuffed date. The bacon ends should slightly overlap but not by too much. If the bacon is too thick, it won’t cook properly. You can use a toothpick to hold the bacon in place while it cooks, if you wish. Wrap the remaining stuffed dates.
Preheat the oven to 400 F. Place bacon wrapped dates in a cast iron pan seam side down. Fry over medium high heat for 3-4 minutes, until the bacon shrinks and seals itself around the dates. Flip and fry another 2-3 minutes until it has a bit of colour.
Flip the dates back over and transfer the pan to the oven. Bake at 400 degrees until bacon is cooked to your liking and goat cheese is gooey. This should take approximately 12-15 minutes.
Alternatively, these stuffed dates cook really well in an air fryer. Preheat the airfryer to 400 F. and arrange the stuffed dates in a single layer, leaving a bit of room between each date. Air fry for seven minutes, or until the bacon is cooked how you like it and the goat cheese has softened.
Make Ahead, Storage, and Reheating Stuffed Dates
These stuffed dates make an excellent make ahead appetizer. Freeze them in an airtight container for up to one month prior to serving. To reheat, leave them out to thaw for an hour, then bake at 350 F for 10-12 minutes or until the bacon is how you like it.
If you make these Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Dates, please be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Be sure to follow me on Facebook and Pinterest for my latest recipes. Also, if you do make this recipe, please tag me on Instagram, I’d love to see what you guys are making! Thank you so much for reading my blog.