This three-ingredient appetizer has got it all – sweet, chewy dates, crispy bacon and creamy goat cheese tucked into each little morsel. Bacon wrapped dates are one of my go-to party recipes for three reasons: they’re total crowd pleasers, super simple to make, and can be prepped ahead of time for holiday gatherings, game day, or any event that calls for a delicious snack. And yes, pj’s and a movie on Friday night totally counts as an event. (At least it does in my house.)
Before we dive into the recipe, here are a few quick tips and adaptation options:
- If You’re Dairy-Free: Replace the goat cheese with a salted almond or pistachio. Don’t let the recipe’s simplicity fool you – it’s absolutely amazing. (Some people even like them more than the version with goat cheese.)
- For Quick & Easy Prep: Count out dates before you start assembling, because once you’ve touched the bacon it’s a hassle to have to wash your hands before grabbing more out of the container.
- To Make These for a Party: I recommend assembling this bacon wrapped dates recipe a day ahead and storing them (covered) in the fridge. Right before the event, pop them in the oven so that they’ll be fresh out of the oven as guests arrive. Expect about five additional minutes of baking time since they were chilled in the fridge overnight.
- For Crispy Bacon: You’ll want to flip them them halfway through baking so that the bottom isn’t soggy.
- For An Extra Sweet & Savory Kick: Sprinkle them with honey and dried rosemary after baking, then drizzle them with a little honey
Bacon Wrapped Dates with Goat Cheese Recipe
- 3-4 oz soft goat cheese or cream cheese (or blue cheese)
- 24 Medjool dates (pitted)
- 12 slices bacon
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Cut or break open the dates on one side - there's usually a slit that was used to remove the pit. If the dates are not already pitted, cut a slit into one side and remove the pit before going to the next step.
- Roll 1 tsp of goat cheese into a small "log" with your hand and place it inside the first date. If you're using blue cheese, place 1/2 teaspoon of the crumbles inside without rolling.
- Cut the bacon slices in half width-wise so that each piece is about 4 inches long.
- Wrap a piece of bacon around a date and secure it in place with a toothpick. Continue with remaining dates and bacon. Place wrapped dates on a rimmed baking sheet or a baking rack that fits inside a baking sheet to catch the fat as it cooks.
- Place the bacon wrapped dates on the middle rack of your preheated oven and cook for 20-25 minutes, flipping once at the 10 minute mark. You can use the toothpicks as a "handle" to flip the dates. Once they've cooked about 15 minutes, start checking on them to see if the bacon is cooked to your preference. Once they have reached the level of doneness you prefer, remove them from the oven. Transfer them to a paper towel lined plate to drain for a about five minutes.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.
Want more easy appetizer recipes?
Fresh Fig Bites – In this recipe, the juicy sweetness of honey-drizzled figs is the perfect contrast to the creamy tartness of goat cheese, and the pistachio adds a bit of crunch. So easy and delicious!
Jalapeno Poppers – Stuffed with cream cheese and cheddar, sprinkled with smoked paprika, and rolled up in bacon, these jalapeno poppers are simple to make and so delicious!
Crab Stuffed Mushrooms – This cheesy, melty recipe from Cheryl of 40 Aprons is simple to make and so delicious!