Jalapenos are a little tricky. Some are super spicy and some are mild/sweet. The ones I used for this were definitely mild. Cooking them prior will help decrease their heat. If I felt that my peppers were really spicy I would definitely not use 6. Also please keep in mind that the cream cheese definitely decreases the spice level significantly.
3 russet potatoes, peeled and diced
6 slices of bacon
1 cup yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
4-6 jalapeños, seeded and diced – see above notes
4 ounces cream cheese
1 cup shredded colby jack cheese
1 cup half and half or milk
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup Panko bread crumbs
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Dice the bacon into very small pieces. In a saucepan, cook the bacon until done. Remove the bacon from the pan. Using 1-2 tablespoons of the bacon grease, cook the onion, garlic and jalapeño about 5 minutes of until tender.
Add the cream cheese, bacon, and milk/half and half. Stir constantly until the cream cheese melts. Add the salt and Colby jack and continue to stir. Remove from the heat.
Place the diced potatoes into a prepared and buttered 9×13 baking dish. Pour the cheese sauce on top. Cover with foil. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes.
Remove and sprinkle the top with Panko. Bake uncovered for an additional 15 minutes.