Types of Chili Peppers
We've been receiving a great many questions on chili peppers
recently so we thought an article explaining the types of chiles
might be useful for our readers.
Some people choose to use fresh peppers in their chilis and
others prefer chili powders, but either way, there are a great many
types of peppers to choose from.
Chiles can be classified in two ways. The first is by shape
and the second is by heat. Some of the smaller types of chiles
are the hottest on the heat scale.
Below are a few of the most common chilis used for cooking.
You can find these chilis at most farmers' markets and specialty
1. Asian chiles/Thai chilis
There are several different kinds of Thai and Asain chiles.
The most popular is prig kee nu. It is very hot when eaten and
is a short pepper (about 1 inch long). These peppers can be
red or green.
2. Cayenne peppers
These are hot peppers ranging in size from 4 to 12 inches.
Cayenne chili peppers can be deep green, yellow, orange or red.
3. Anaheim/New Mexico/Paprika/Pasillo(Pablano)
group of chiles are mild, deep green and range in size from 6 to 8
inches long. They are the mildest peppers as far as heat
scales go, and a lot of people use these in place of bell peppers in
4. Habanero Peppers
Habanero chili peppers are the hottest commercially grown pepper
today. The plants are very hardy and can survive very hot
summers. Habaneros are green, red, orange or yellow and are
short small chiles.
5. Hot Cherry
These peppers are medium hot when eaten and are bright red in
color. Their name comes from the cherry shape of the peppers.
Hot Cherry peppers contain a lot of seeds and mostly pickled by
cooks before use.
6. Hungarian Wax Peppers/Banana
Most of these peppers are green but sometimes can be found in
yellow and red. The heat in these peppers actually range from
mild to somewhat hot. Salads and sandwiches are the most
common places you find these types of chili peppers.
Jalapeno chiles are hot chiles and range in color from dark green
to red. These chilis are easy to clean and cook which make
them very popular for many cooking dishes. People call them
chipoltes when they are smoke dried.
8. Serrano Chiles
These are very hot chiles! Serrano chiles are known to be
almost twice as hot as jalapeno chili peppers. They can be red
or green in color.
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