About Courtney

Cookbook author and party stylist, Courtney Whitmore is also the editor of the popular party resource, Pizzazzerie. She's the author of the following cookbooks: Push-Up Pops, Candy Making For Kids, + Frostings.

{Appetizer} BBQ Grilled Jalapenos!

Grilling Summertime Appetizer, Pulled Pork Stuffed Jalapenos with Queso cheese! Are you ready for the perfect backyard spicy appetizer? I love the classic stuffed jalapenos with a cream cheese base, but I wanted to change it up because I’ve been in quite the BBQ mood lately. Jalapenos are truly the perfect vessel for any type of filling. I decided on pulled pork topped with shredded queso cheese. It’s that easy! Now, these guys pack some heat (even with the coring cut out) so be careful handing these to kids.  They’re also not perfectly gorgeous little bite-sized canapes. These guys are get-down and get your BBQ on type of yum!

See how ooey gooey they are topped with the shredded queso cheese? I found this fab cheese in my regular grocery store. Queso cheese is – you got it – like queso so it melts really well and is perfect for topping simple appetizers like this one!

Grilling Summertime Appetizer, Pulled Pork Stuffed Jalapenos with Queso cheese! You can absolutely use your favorite type of meat (pulled chicken, chopped beef, etc). I chose pulled pork because I wanted a southern-style BBQ experience! I used a jalapeno grill rack. They are really great (though my farmers-market jalapenos were a wee bit big for the holes). You could lay these down on the grill as well, just remember to rotate them and also to use tongs to help keep the meat inside

Grilling Summertime Appetizer, Pulled Pork Stuffed Jalapenos with Queso cheese!
So who is hungry? Save or Print the recipe below! If you love, share it with friends. It’s a new favorite in our house!

Pulled Pork BBQ Grilled Jalapenos


Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 13 minutes

Yield: 16 stuffed jalapenos

Serving Size: 1-2 peppers

The perfect backyard grilling appetizer, these BBQ stuffed jalapenos are both delicious and spicy!


  • 16 jalapeno peppers
  • 1 cup pulled pork in barbecue sauce
  • 1/4 cup queso shredded cheese


  1. Cut tops off of jalapenos and core out the inside including most of the seeds. This will reduce the heat and provide space for filling.
  2. Be sure your pulled pork is already combined with your favorite barbecue sauce. Use a small spoon to carefully fill each hollowed-out jalapeno with the pulled meat.
  3. Using a jalapeno rack or laying flat on grill, close grill and let grill for 7-10 minutes.
  4. Once peppers have softened and meat has crisped over, top with shredded queso. Close for 1-2 minutes until cheese has melted.
  5. Remove from heat and enjoy!


Perfect Party Appetizer: Provence Tartlets!

Provence Tarlets - SO good + perfect party appetizer! We all need a few go-to appetizers for those times when friends stop by unexpected or even those nights when you just want to make a few tapas at home for dinner instead of a big entree. This is my new favorite. It is ready in minutes, everyone loves it, and you can adapt it to your family’s favorite flavors. I call them “provence tartlets” because they have a delicious Tuscan flavor from herbs de provence and fresh basil. I’m warning you, however, that you’ll want to triple this recipe if you have a crowd because they.go.FAST!

Italian Tartlets. Better TRIPLE this recipe, they won't last long! They are really a total breeze to make. And ready in minutes. Those are 2 keys to an easy appetizer. The base is flaky pie crust which provides the most delicious texture that I love. It looks like a cracker but when people bite down, you see their eyes get big because it tastes like a mini pizza pie! A creamy cheese mixture keeps them from being dry and then the toppings? Fresh veggies. And more cheese. Amazing.

You start out by baking them pre-cheese. So they look a little something like this.

Making Tuscan Provence Tartlets! Then they’ll bake roughly 12 minutes at 375 degrees or until the edges are starting to toast up. Pull it out and top with grated white cheddar (or the cheese of your choice). I look forward to trying blue cheese crumbles sometime soon.

Adding grated cheese on top of these mini appetizers makes them delicious! And a few more minutes (full recipe below) and you have the perfect party appetizer!

The BEST appetizer for parties! Provence Tartlets.

Tuscan Provence Tartlets

Yield: 12-14 tartlets


  • 1 pastry pie crust
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 tablespoon herbs de provence
  • 1-1/2 cups grated sharp white cheddar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic
  • 3 cups fresh spinach
  • 3 small tomatoes (roma or vine)
  • Basil for garnish


  1. Prepare pie crust and roll out. Use round 2-1/2 to 3 inch round cutter to cut out circles.
  2. Stir together softened cream cheese, herbs de provence, and 1 cup grated white cheddar. Spread on each pie round.
  3. In a saucepan, saute spinach with garlic. Remove from heat.
  4. Top each pie round with spinach and slice of tomato.
  5. Bake at 375 degrees for 12 minutes or until toasted.
  6. Remove and top with extra white cheddar cheese. Return to oven for 3-5 minutes or until cheese is melted!
  7. Top with diced basil (for garnish).


St. Patrick’s Day Shamrock Tortilla Chips!

How to make Shamrock Tortilla Chips for St. Patrick's Day

Shockingly (since most of my blog and all my cookbooks are on sweet treats), spinach is one of my favorite foods! I also love to buy wraps in spinach flavor (I’m not sure if there is really a boost in nutrition but I like the color green). I picked up a Shamrock cookie cutter from Michaels and decided to make mini “shamrock tostadas” for the perfect St. Patrick’s Day dinner except I quickly realized all the delish toppings wouldn’t stay on! Continue Reading »

Mini Pistachio Almond Donuts

Mini Pistachio Almond Donuts - Taste like mini petit four donuts!

I am very sorry if you’re still one of the few trying to stick to their New Year’s Resolutions to lose weight because these babies are ADDICTIVE. I’ve become slightly obsessed with my Wilton mini donut pan (as you can see from these Samoa donuts) and decided to try another of my favorite flavor profiles – pistachio almond! I think pistachio and almond taste similar anyway so why not double the fun. These donuts remind me of petit fours because of the almond flavor and the glaze. Mmm…

Mini Pistachio Almond Donuts - Baked! These little babies are SO easy. I can’t stop thinking of fun combinations (or even just plain vanilla with a colored glaze and sprinkles for a party). Now, you do have to realize that they’re not going to come flying out of your oven tasting like Krispy Kremes. They have a more “cake-like” texture but boy are they still delish! This is my favorite flavor combo by far.

I think these would be perfect for St. Patrick’s Day too!

Pistachio Almond Mini Donuts


  • 1 1/4 cups cake flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon almond extract
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • For The Glaze & Topping:
  • 1 cup confectioner's sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Jell-O pistachio instant pudding
  • 3 tablespoons Milk (or heavy cream)
  • 1/2 cup almonds, chopped (and toasted if preferred)


  1. Sift together cake flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  2. Stir in almond, egg, buttermilk, and melted butter until just mixed (do not overmix).
  3. Spoon or pipe the doughnut batter into a greased doughnut pan.
  4. Bake at 425 degrees for 4-5 minutes (watch carefully to not overbake).
  5. Let sit to cool before popping out.
  6. In a small mixing bowl, combine confectioner's sugar, pistachio pudding powder, and milk. Stir until a glaze forms.
  7. Dip donuts in glaze and top with chopped and toasted almonds.