One-pot air fryer poblano stuffed peppers are filled with chicken, Roma tomatoes, cheddar cheese, and hot sauce then grilled in the air fryer to a beautiful char with golden melted cheese. This is a great keto-friendly light meal that comes together in one-pot – or air fryer basket.
Update: This recipe was originally published in October 2019, but has since been revamped into a tasty air fryer recipe. The original oven-baked instructions are still included in the recipe card.
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Now that I’ve swapped out the bell pepper for poblano, I am never going back. Air fryer stuffed peppers are that much more better when using poblano peppers over regular bell peppers. The longer shape means it gets a more even char throughout and the stuffing is cooked more evenly.
I love this recipe for evenings when I prefer a lighter meal that is still perfectly nutritious and satisfying. It is also a fantastic keto-friendly air fryer recipe – no substitutes needed.
Ingredients for Air Fryer Chicken Stuffed Poblano Peppers
This meal is for 4 poblano peppers, but they’re sliced in half so that makes it a total of 8.
- Poblano Peppers
- Uncooked Diced Chicken
- Diced Tomatoes
- Garlic Powder
- Onion Powder
- Shredded Cheddar Cheese
- Favorite Hot Sauce – I used Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
- Olive Oil
- Sour Cream for Topping
- Sliced Green Onions for Topping
What Are Poblanos?
Poblanos are a type of chile pepper first grown in Puebla, Mexico – hence the name. They are a capsicum just like bell peppers but their shape is elongated, coming to a point at the non-stem side.
They are picked when they are still green and that is also how you find them fresh in most stores. However, if left to ripen for longer they will start to turn orange and red. At this stage, they are often dried to make ancho chiles.
Are Poblano Peppers Hot?
Poblanos have a little more zing to them than bell peppers but they are still considered mild. They won’t set your mouth on fire as little chili peppers might.
Are Poblano Peppers Hotter When They Turn Red?
When green poblanos are left to ripen on the plant for longer, they start to turn red. Like all chile peppers, the more time they are given to ripen, the hotter they get. So, if you don’t like the heat it is safer to stick to the green ones.
When to Harvest Poblano Peppers
If you are planning on cooking the poblanos, they should be picked when they get a dark green color. To make dried chile peppers, wait until they have become bright red.
Red vs Green Poblano Peppers
This is something that confuses many people. Red poblanos and green peppers are the same fruit on the same plant. The only difference is that the green ones are harvested while they are still young and the red ones are left to ripen on the plant.
Are Poblano Peppers the Same as Green Chile?
They may look like overgrown green chiles but they are not the same plant, just the same family. The small green chile you are probably referring to packs a lot more heat than these big boys.
How to Prepare Poblano Peppers
This pepper is best cooked before it is eaten and most recipes call for roasting them in the oven or charring on the grill. Of course, I keep it simple with a recipe for stuffed poblano peppers in air fryer.
How to Roast Poblano Peppers in Air Fryer
Poblanos taste their best when they are roasted. The outer skin can be a little tough and this cooking method takes care of that.
To make sure that all sides of the pepper are covered, I first cook the halved poblanos with their cut side down. This lets the edges and interior gain some color and flavor before the stuffing. The outer skin gets the same treatment once the chicken stuffed poblano peppers are filled.
You can add a little bit of olive oil to help the peppers cook but if you are minding calories, you can roast them as is. The cooking time might take longer, though.
Can You Freeze Cooked Stuffed Peppers?
Depending on the size of your air fryer you can fit about 4 poblano stuffed peppers in the basket. If you have any leftovers, you can easily keep them in the freezer.
Tightly wrap them with cling foil and place them inside a freezer-safe airtight container. You can pop them back in the air fryer, microwave, or oven for reheating.
Substitutes & Diet Adjustments for Air Fryer Stuffed Peppers
As always, I want you to have the freedom to give this recipe your own twist. I want you to feel confident whenever you are trying one of my air fryer recipes.
Which Ingredients Can Be Swapped Out?
I know that I have been praising the poblano but the recipe will still work if all you can find is a bell pepper. Another easy swap is the cheddar – feel free to use any other cheese variety that melts well like gouda or mozzarella.
For my recipe, I prepared the chicken breast myself because this gives me more control over the calories. Poblano pepper nutrition is excellent but ready-made store-bought chicken can have all sorts of hidden ingredients. Still, using shredded rotisserie chicken would be a quicker option.
I recommend not using cherry or grape tomatoes for this recipe, but other large tomatoes work. You want all the refreshing juice that comes out of the bigger Roma tomatoes.
Are Poblano Peppers Low-Carb and Low-Calorie?
Poblanos themselves are low carb and low-calorie but it will depend on what you stuff them with whether the recipe is low-carb and low-calorie. In this recipe, most of the calories come from the cheddar cheese. You can reduce the amount of cheese to cut the calorie count.
Are Poblano Peppers Keto?
Like most vegetables, poblano peppers fit a keto diet. There is no rice or other high-carb grain in the stuffing and the chicken is great for added protein. To add higher fat content to the dish that’s needed in keto diets, cheese is added to the mixture, and sour cream tops off this tasty recipe.
How to Make Air Fryer Chicken Stuffed Poblano Peppers
- Begin by rinsing all produce and patting dry.
- Slice poblano peppers in half and place 2-3 pieces cut side down in the air fryer basket. Drizzle peppers with olive oil.
- Cook in the air fryer for 5 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit until all of them are cooked, then set aside.
- Dice the chicken and pat dry. Season with salt and pepper. Spray air fryer basket with nonstick cooking oil. Add chicken and cook at 380 degrees Fahrenheit for 6-8 minutes until the chicken is no longer pink in the center. Stir after 4 minutes of cooking time.
- While the chicken cooks, dice tomatoes into ¼″ pieces and place in a bowl with shredded cheddar cheese, hot sauce, and seasonings.
- Add cooked chicken to the bowl with tomatoes and stir.
- Fill each poblano pepper with chicken mixture and cook in the air fryer for 7-8 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit until peppers are done to your liking and cheese is melted.
- Top with sour cream and sliced green onions. Add more hot sauce if you like heat!
Try cooking poblano peppers this way and I dare you to tell me that it isn’t better than a bell pepper. I am so happy to have an easy yet healthy keto recipe on hand with just a few ingredients.
The final result is quite insta-worthy, if you ask me. I’d love to see how your amazingly roasted chicken stuffed poblanos turn out. Share your photo with me on the social media channels or ask me any questions you might have about the recipe below.
More Great Recipes That Use Poblano Peppers
Try these other great Mexican recipes!
- Air Fryer Chicken Fajitas
- Chorizo Queso with Flour Tortilla Chips
- Corn and Black Bean Salsa
- Easy Chicken Flautas
- Fish Tacos with Spicy Slaw
- Garlic-Lime Crockpot Chicken Tacos
- Instant Pot Chicken Enchiladas
- Instant Pot Street-Style Beef Tacos
- Mexican Black Beans
- Mexican Street Corn in a Cup
- Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas
One-Pot Air Fryer Chicken Stuffed Poblano Peppers
- 4 Poblano Peppers
- 1 tbsp Olive Oil
- 2 cups Uncooked Diced Chicken, Approximately 1 lb of boneless chicken
- 3 Tomatoes, diced (Roma are my favorite for this recipe)
- 1 tsp Salt
- ¼ tsp Pepper
- ½ tsp Garlic Powder
- ½ tsp Onion Powder
- ¼ tsp Dill
- ½ cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
- 2 tsp Favorite Hot Sauce – I used Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
- Sour Cream, for topping
- Sliced Green Onions, for topping
- Air Fryer Cooking Method
- Slice poblano peppers in half lengthwise. Remove ribs and seeds. Place cut side down in the air fryer. Drizzle peppers with olive oil. Cook at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 5 minutes, then set peppers aside.
- Pat chicken dry and season with salt and pepper. Spray air fryer basket with nonstick cooking oil and add diced chicken. Cook at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 6-8 minutes or until no longer pink in the center and golden brown on the outside, stirring halfway.
- While the chicken cooks, dice Roma tomatoes into ¼" pieces and place into a bowl. Add shredded cheddar cheese, hot sauce, and seasonings to bowl. Add cooked chicken to bowl with tomatoes and stir.
- Fill poblano peppers with chicken mixture and cook in the air fryer at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 7-8 minutes. Remove from air fryer when cheese is melted through and peppers are cooked to your liking. Serve with sour cream and sliced green onions on top. Add additional hot sauce if you like heat!
- Oven Cooking Method
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line baking pan with foil.
- Slice poblano peppers in half and place cut side down on prepared pan. Drizzle peppers with olive oil. Bake in oven for 10 minutes, then flip poblano peppers over on pan and set aside.
- Dice Roma tomatoes into ¼" pieces and place into a bowl. Add shredded cheddar cheese, hot sauce, and seasonings to bowl.
- Pat chicken dry and season with salt and pepper. Add 1 tbsp olive oil to large pan over medium-high heat and add diced chicken. Cook for 7-8 minutes until no longer pink in the center and is golden brown on the outside. Add chicken to bowl with tomatoes and stir.
- Fill poblano peppers with chicken mixture and bake in oven for 8-10 minutes. Remove from oven when cheese is melted through and top with sour cream and green onions.
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