Did you know that there are 4,000 different varieties of chili peppers in the world? In Mexico, about 60 types of chili peppers are grown in the country. You probably already know that chili peppers are an important part of Mexican cuisine. They are used in many authentic Mexican dishes to add color, complexity, depth, and spice. In Mexico, some of the most commonly used peppers include the Jalapeño, ancho, cascabel, poblano, chipotle, morita, guajillo, serrano, habanero, pasilla, de arbol, manzano, puya, and piquín chiles. Read below for more about Mexico’s chili peppers.

A Taste of Mexico: Chili Pepper Details:

  • Poblano Chili Peppers

  • Firstly, poblano chili peppers are one of the most commonly used dried chilis in Mexico. The dark green, large chiles are also known as ancho chiles. In Spanish, the word “Ancho” means “wide”. The large and triangular shaped ancho chile is sweet and mild in dried form.

  • Jalape mexican chili pepper ño Chili Peppers

    Secondly, jalapeños are one of the most popular chillies around the world. These tasty peppers are very versatile and available in various preparations including fresh, roasted, pickled or smoked. In addition, did you know that chipotle peppers are simply jalapeños that have been dried? Once the jalapeños are dried, they are called chipotle peppers and become dark red in color with a smoky, spicy, and slightly sweet taste.

  • Pasilla Peppers

    Also called chile negro, pasilla peppers are long and narrow and can be mild, medium, or hot and spicy. When the pasillas are dried, the pepper’s skin becomes quite wrinkly. Around 6 to 8 inches long and 1 to 1.5 inches in diameter, dried pasilla chiles are often used to prepare many delicious sauces such as fresh salsas, enchilada sauce, and mole.

  • Guajillo Peppers

  • Did you know that guajillo chilies are the main pepper used to make salsa that is served with tamales? In order to prepare the salsa, guajillo peppers are dried, seeded, then soaked in water. Next, they are mashed or pureed into a paste. Lastly, they are cooked with other ingredients to create a wonderful fresh sauce that goes great with homemade tamales.
  • Serrano Peppers

    Serrano peppers are quite spicy for being so little. These peppers were originally produced in the mountainous regions of the states of Puebla and Hidalgo, and the name serrano refers to the mountain ranges in those areas. These peppers are very spicy, and are used in a variety of salsas. Serranos are also used to make giardiniera which is an Italian relish of pickled vegetables in vinegar or oil.

  • Habanero Pepper

  • One of the spiciest chilies in the world, habanero peppers are green when unripe, but turn orange or red once matured. In general, habanero peppers are very small and only measure 2–6 centimeters in length. These spicy peppers are full of capsaicinoids, and score 150,000 Scoville Heat Units which makes the habanero one of the world’s spiciest peppers.

  • Ghost Pepper

    Finally, according to the Guiness Book of World Records, the hottest pepper in the world is the ghost pepper which is a hybrid of Capsicum chinense and Capsicum frutescens. At 170 times hotter than Tabasco sauce, the ghost chili scored more than one million Scoville Heat Units (SHUs). For comparison’s sake, the ghost pepper is around 416 times hotter than a jalapeño pepper which scores just 5,000 Scoville Heat Units. Is your mouth on fire yet?

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