Made with simple ingredients, bacon-wrapped dates are the perfect appetizer for holiday entertaining and a guaranteed crowd pleaser.
Sweet dates, salty bacon, and creamy cheese come together with a little crunch from roasted almonds. They look fancy, but come together easily.
The filling in stuffed dates can be all different types of cheese. Many use creamy goat cheese or blue cheese, but my favorite is a filling made with plain cream cheese. It compliments the other ingredients while letting the flavors of the smoky bacon and sweet dates shine through.
This bite-sized appetizer is perfect for the holiday season, new year’s eve, or a fun dinner party. Give these bacon wrapped dates with cream cheese a try and find out why they're a favorite appetizer in our house. You can also add a green salad, and call these appetizers your dinner. They're that good.
You will need:
- Sliced bacon
- Large, pitted dates
- Cream cheese
- Roasted almonds
- Garlic powder
How to Make Bacon Wrapped Dates
Using kitchen shears or a small paring knife, cut each date lengthwise on one side. (See image below.) As you do this, check for any remaining pits or hard pieces on the end of the dates. Remove any excess pits and/or hard pieces. Set dates aside.
In a small bowl, combine cream cheese, and garlic powder. Finely chop almonds. Add to cream cheese and mix until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
Open package of bacon. Cut each slice of bacon in half. Set aside.
Heat oven to 400 degrees.
Open date slightly at the cut and place aprox ½ teaspoon of cream cheese mixture inside. Press seam together to seal slightly. (Dates should be full but not overflowing.)
Place stuffed date onto the end of a piece of bacon, roll up lengthwise and secure bacon with a toothpick.
Place date onto prepared wrack. Repeat with the rest of the dates.
Bake dates for 20-25 minutes or until bacon is cooked through.
Remove toothpicks. Serve warm or at room temperature.
- Make this recipe nut free by leaving out the almonds. I like the texture that nuts add to this dates recipe, but you can easily leave them out and still have a delicious, easy appetizer.
- Use a small spoon to stuff your dates. There's no need to get out a piping bag. This recipe isn't that fussy. Use a spoon to place the cheese mixture inside the dates and don't worry if a little ends up on the outside of the date. The bacon will cover that up.
More Easy Appetizers
FAQs and Substitutions
These dates are delicious served warm or at room temperature.
Yes! You can make these up to 24 hours ahead and reheat in a 300 degree oven for 5-7 minutes before serving. You can also save time by making the filling up to 3 days in advance, then just assemble and bake the night you want to serve the dates.
Skip the thick-cut bacon for this recipe. The standard cut available in any grocery store works great.
Yes! I've made these dates with regular, low fat and fat free cream cheese - all work great.
Cashews and walnuts work well in this recipe in place of the almonds. Don't use peanuts or pecans. Their flavor is too overwhelming for this dish.
Happy Hour Cocktail Pairings
Salty, creamy, bacon wrapped dates pair well with a tart cocktail. Try one of these: