There are some aromas in the kitchen that I love….well, ok, many aromas, but one of my favorites is the smell of peppers roasting, especially poblanos. I think the hardest part of roasting peppers is letting them sit covered after they are done. How do you like to roast peppers? Do you hold it over the gas flame? On the grill? Broiled in the oven? As much as I love cooking, I have to admit at times I am a lazy cook looking for the easy route. So for me, I always roast peppers in the oven, yes, too lazy to fire up the grill or to stand holding peppers over the flame.

Chiles Rellenos (Stuffed Chile) is one dish I love to have when dining out at a Mexican restaurant, but until now not one of my favorites to make at home. I didn’t like the mess of frying them or the two-step egg process to get the batter “just right”.  Admittedly almost always my peppers ending up breaking when I stuffed them, but sometimes messes become successes. This recipe is one of them. It happened one day when I had a “open-faced” (nice way of saying broken) stuffed pepper. Of course, I couldn’t throw it away. I thought about just broiling it with a nice topping of cheese, since cheese makes everything better, but one of the parts I love about chiles rellenos-the fluffy coating. So I put on my To Cook Is To Create thinking cap, grabbed a beer and a package of instant pancake mix and this recipe is the result. Just about any filling can be used, great for leftovers! This filling is based on one of my favorite dips-Apache Dip, perfect baked in a bread bowl. If you never had Apache dip, google it, tons of recipes to choose, but a basic and easy one to remember- 8oz each of cheese, cream cheese, and sour cream, 1 can of green chilies, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, and ham. Imagine all that cheesy goodness of the dip stuffed in a pepper topped with a sour cream sauce!

Baked Ham and Cjeese Chiles Rellenos

Baked Open Faced Ham and Cheese Chiles Rellenos
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Yield: 4 peppers

Baked Open Faced Ham and Cheese Chiles Rellenos


  • 4 poblano peppers
  • For stuffing:
  • 1 small onion, cubed
  • 8 oz leftover ham
  • 1 cup cheddar or monterary jack cheese, grated
  • 4 oz can chopped green chiles
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese, softened or whipped
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 6 oz bag of instant pancake and waffle mix
  • 1 8oz beer
  • For sauce:
  • 1 TBSP butter
  • 1 TBSP flour
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • grated cheddar cheese for garnish, if desired


  1. Preheat oven to 375*
  2. Broil or hold peppers over gas flame until charred. Put peppers into a bowl. Cover. Let sit for 15 minutes. Peel and seed peppers.
  3. In a bowl, mix pancake mix with 7oz of beer (Enjoy the last sip!) Batter should resemble a thick pancake batter. Let sit for 15 minutes.
  4. Add ham and onion to a food processor. Mince. Remove to a bowl. Add in green chiles, cheese, cream cheese, garlic and chili powder, and Worcestershire sauce. Blend well.
  5. Cut down the center of each pepper being careful not to cut all the way through. Gently open pepper. Stuff pepper with filling. Put each pepper onto a greased cookie sheet.
  6. Spoon a thin layer of batter over each pepper. Make sure to cover the stuffing.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes.
  8. For the sauce: In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour. Add the chicken broth. Cook stirring often for 5 minutes until thickened. Turn off heat. Stir in the sour cream until melted and smooth.
  9. Serve sauce over peppers. Top with grated cheese, if desired.

Put your TO COOK IS TO CREATE thinking cap on: Not a sour cream sauce fan? Make a homemade Enchilada Sauce or use both sauces.  Think about what you like in chiles rellenos. Jalapenos? Lots of cheese? Black olives? Add it into the stuffing. Love Spanish rice and beans? Serve the peppers over a bed of beans and add some rice to the filling.Think about what you like on a ham and cheese sandwich. Tomatoes? Add chopped tomatoes to filling or the sauce. Lettuce? These chiles rellenos are wonderful served over a bed of shredded lettuce. Egg? Top with a fried or poached egg before adding sauce. What other leftovers would make tasty stuffed poblano peppers? Still have leftover ham? Make Club Meatballs or freeze it for a future pot of beans. Don’t forget to freeze the bone, too.

FOOD FUN: Chile Rellenos originated in Peubla, Mexico, in the 16th century. But nowadays you don’t need to travel far to find different combinations of fillings, peppers, or festivals. There are annual chile rellenos celebrations in New York City, Atlanta, Santa Monica, and Denver. Road trip?

Baked Open Faced Ham & Cheese Chiles Rellenos
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One thought on “Baked Open Faced Ham & Cheese Chiles Rellenos

  • April 19, 2017 at 3:02 pm

    You had me with the word “CHEESE”. A delicious recipe. Fun to make and even more fun to eat. ❤👅👍


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