There are many, many varieties of chili peppers, and they often have different names depending on region. But, we're compiling information on chili peppers for you to learn more.
Anatomy of a Chili Pepper - An illustration of the innards of a chili pepper.
Chili Peppers by Heat Level - View chili peppers by heat level including sweet & mild, medium, medium-hot, hot, superhots.
Our Chili Pepper List
Sweet bell pepper: 0 Scovilles. The typical green bell pepper, about the size of a large fist. Very mild.
Banana pepper: 0-500 Scovilles. Also known as the Yellow wax pepper, the Banana Pepper has a mild, sweet taste that is very popular on many types of foods.
Trinidad Perfume chili pepper: 0-500 Scovilles. The Trinidad Perfume chili pepper is a mild chili pepper with very little to no heat. It is a habanero type and produces pods similar to a typical orange habanero pepper, about 1 to 1.5 inches in length and 1.25 inches wide.
Cubanelle chili pepper: 0 - 1,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. The Cubanelle is considered a sweet pepper, although its heat can range from mild to moderate. Cubanelles are usually picked before they ripen, while they are a yellowish-green color, but when ripe, they turn bright red.
Pimento (or Pimiento) chili pepper: 100 - 500 Scovilles. Not just for stuffing olives. Pimiento is the Spanish word for "pepper".
Cherry pepper: 100 - 500 Scovilles. See "Pimento" chili pepper. Not just for stuffing olives. Pimiento is the Spanish word for "pepper".
Pepperoncini chili pepper: 100-500 Scovilles: Also known as Tuscan Peppers. These sweet, mild chili peppers are found in Italy and Greece.
NewMex R Naky chili pepper:250-750 Scovilles. The NuMex R Naky chile is an Anaheim-type hybrid created by Dr. Nakayama of New Mexico State University in 1985.
Pasilla chili pepper: 250 - 3,999 Scovilles: Pasilla or "little raisin" properly refers to the dried chilaca pepper. The chilaca, when fresh, is also known as pasilla bajio, or as the chile negro or "Mexican negro" because, while it starts off dark green, it ends up dark brown. It typically grows from 8 to 10 inches long.
Paprika chili pepper: 250 - 1000 Scovilles. A large, cone-shaped chili pepper. It is dried and ground to make the more familiar powdered spice.
Sonora chili pepper: 300–600 Scovilles. The Sonora is an Anaheim variety with a very mild flavor. It grows to about 10” in length and up to 1 ½” wide, and although it matures to red, it is commonly used in its less mature, green form.
Ají Panca: 500 Scovilles. The Panca chili (or Ají Panca as it’s known in South America), is a deep red to burgundy pepper, measuring 3-5 inches.
Santa Fe Grande chili pepper: 500 - 700 Scovilles. Also known as the yellow hot chile and the guero chile. Approximately 5 inches long and ripen from greenish-yellow, to orange-yellow to red.
Anaheim chili pepper: 500 - 1,000 Scovilles. A mild, medium sized chili pepper that grows to 6-10 inches, often used when green, though it can be used when red.
Coronado chili pepper: 700-1,000 Scovilles. Originally from South America, the Coronado Pepper grows to 4” long and 2” wide with thin, waxy skin.
Poblano chili pepper: 1,000 - 2,000 Scovilles. The poblano is an extremly popular chili peppers. 4 inches long, very dark green in color, ripening to dark red or brown.
Ancho chili pepper: 1,000 - 2,000 Scovilles. An Ancho pepper is dried form of the poblano chili pepper.
Chilaca: 1,000-2,500 Scovilles. The Chilaca is a curved, long, thin pepper, that grows to about 6-9 inches, and 1 inch wide.
Hatch chili peppers: 1,000 - 2,500 Scovilles. Hatch chili peppers are grown and harvested in Hatch Valley, New Mexico. They are harvested in late July and early August and have a mild to medium flavor. The peppers are long and curved, much like the Anaheim chili pepper, and are perfect for stuffing.
Cascabel chili peppers: 1,000-3,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. The Cascabel Chile is grown in several areas of Mexico. It is small and round, 2-3 cm in diameter, and matures to a deep red.
Picuante/ Peppadew chili pepper: 1,177 Scovilles. Capsicum Baccatum. The Peppadew is grown in the Limpopo province of South Africa, and is actually the brand name of sweet piquanté peppers.
Aji chili pepper: 1,177 - 75,000 Scovilles. Also known generally as the Peruvian hot pepper, aji is the common name primarily in South America and areas of the Caribbean for chili peppers.
Espanola chili pepper: 1,500-2,000 Scovilles. The Espanola was developed in New Mexico in the 1980s by crossing a Sandia pepper with another New Mexico chile.
Rocotillo chili pepper: 1,500-2,500 Scovilles. There is some confusion about the rocotillo chili pepper, since some appear to be from Capsicum baccatum and some from Capsicum Chinense.
NewMex Joe E Parker chili pepper: 1,500-3,000 Scovilles. This New Mexico variety was named after Mr. Joe E. Parker, a graduate of NMSU’s College of Agriculture and Home Economics, who helped to evaluate this selection of chile.
Mulato chili pepper: 2,500-3,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. The Mulato is a mild to medium dried Poblano, similar to the Ancho, but with a slightly different flavor.
New Mex Big Jim chili pepper: 2,500-3,000 Scovilles. This giant chili pepper was introduced by New Mexico State University in the 1970s as a cross between a few different types of local chiles and a Peruvian chile.
Mirasol chili pepper: 2,500-5,000 Scovilles. The name Mirasol means "looking at the sun" in Spanish, which describes the way these peppers grow on the plant. They are known as Guajillo in their dried form, which are one of the main chiles used in traditional mole sauces. '
Guajillo chili pepper: 2,500-5,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. The Guajillo is one of the most common and popular chiles grown and used in Mexico. It is mild to moderately hot, and has dark, reddish brown, leathery skin.
Jalapeno chili pepper: 2,500 - 8,000 Scovilles. The world's most popular chili pepper! Harvested when they are green or red if allowed to ripen, about 4-6 inches long. A chipotle is a smoked jalapeno chili pepper.
Purple Jalapeno chili pepper: 2,500 - 8,000 Scovilles. The Purple Jalapeno is an ornamental version of the typical jalapeno pepper.
Chipotle chili pepper: 2,500 - 8,000 Scovilles. A chipotle is a smoked jalapeno chili pepper. You'll notice the distinctive smoky flavor of certain foods like salsas that have been prepared with chipotle peppers. Very delicious.
Morita chili pepper: 2,500 - 8,000 Scovilles. A smoked red jalapeno, similar to a chipotle pepper.
Fresno chili pepper: 2,500-10,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. The Fresno pepper looks and tastes almost like a jalapeno, but they can be much hotter. Fresno peppers change from green to red as they grow, and increase in hotness, but they are often harvested and sold as green.
New Mexico 6-4 Heritage chili pepper: 3,000-5,000 Scovilles. The New Mexico 6-4 Heritage chile pepper was developed around 1998 from a seed bank of the original New Mexico 6-4.
Chimayo chili pepper: 4,000-6,000 Scovilles. The Chimayo is another New Mexico chile, but it is a unique one. It is not commercially mass produced, but is more commonly grown in individual homes and gardens, making them unpredictable and un-conforming, in a good way.
Sandia chili pepper: 5,000-7,000 Scovilles. Another chili from New Mexico, the Sandia grows to 6-7” and is similar to the Anaheim pepper. They start green and ripen to red, but are often used while green.
Puya chili pepper: 5,000-8,000 Scovilles. The Puya chile is similar to the Guajillo, but smaller and hotter.
Hungarian Wax: 5,000-15,000 Scovilles. The Hungarian Wax Pepper, as its name suggests, originated in Hungary.
Serrano pepper: 5,000 - 23,000 Scovilles. A smaller version of the jalapeno, similar in color, but smaller, about 1 to 2 inches long, 1/2 inch wide. Dark green to redish in color. Getting spicier!
Bishop’s Crown chili pepper: 5,000-30,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Baccatum. This chile is a member of the Capsicum Baccatum species, which includes the Ají pepper.
Peter Pepper: 5,000-30,000 Scovilles. This very interesting little chili makes a great conversation piece in the garden or in the kitchen due to its distinctively phallic shape, hence its name.
Shipkas chili pepper: 5,000-30,000 Scovilles. Also known as the “Bulgarian Carrot Pepper,” this interesting little chili pepper looks remarkably like a carrot, with its bright orange color and long, narrow body.
Hidalgo chili pepper: 6,000-17,000 Scovilles. The Hidalgo is an heirloom pepper, similar in shape and hotness to the Serrano, originally from Mexico and Central America.
Aleppo: About 10,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. The Aleppo pepper, also known as the Halaby pepper, is named after the city of Aleppo in Northern Syria. It is commonly grown in Syria and Turkey, and is usually dried and crushed.
Bolivian Rainbow chili pepper: 10,000-30,000 Scovilles. Grown for centuries in Bolivia (Central South America), the Bolivian Rainbow chile is a stunningly beautiful plant.
Baker's Hot chili pepper: 15,000-30,000 Scovilles. The Barker’s Hot is an extra-hot chile, the hottest of the Anaheim/ New Mexico variety, and it has great flavor.
Lemon Drop Chil Pepper: 15,000-30,000 Scovilles. This bright yellow, citrus-flavored chile is also known as Kellu Uchu in Peru, where it originated.
Jwala Finger Hot chili pepper: 20,000-30,000 Scovilles. The Jwala is the most popular chile in India, adding great flavor and spice to many Indian dishes.
Ají Limo: 30,000-50,000 Scovilles. The Limo chile (or Ají Limo) is another super-hot chili from Peru. (Ají is the term for chile pepper in South America.)
Ají Amarillo: 30,000-50,000 Scovilles. Since “Amarillo” is the Spanish word for yellow, and “Ají” is the term for chile in South America, this pepper is also appropriately known as the “yellow chile.”
Chile de Árbol chili pepper: Sources rate this chile in 2 categories- 15,000-30,000 and 50,000-65,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. Chiles de Árbol are small and thin Mexican peppers, growing to 2-3 inches long and less than a ½ inch wide.
Tabasco pepper: 30,000 - 50,000 Scovilles. Yep, this is the chili pepper used in Tabasco sauce. The fruit is tapered and under 2 inches long. The color is usually creamy yellow to red.
Cayenne pepper: 30,000 - 50,000 Scovilles. A thin chile pepper, green to red in color, about 2 to 3 inches long. The "cayenne pepper" spice you use is the dried, ground version of this pepper.
Chile Pequin chili pepper: 30,000-60,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. Also spelled Piquin, this chile is also called Bird Pepper, because it is consumed and spread by wild birds.
Rocoto chili pepper: 30,000 - 100,000 Scovilles. AKA the Manzano pepper. This chili pepper is normally found in South America. It is among the oldest of domesticated chili peppers, and was grown up to as much as 5000 years ago. It is probably related to undomesticated chili peppers that still grow in South America.
Guntur Sannam chili pepper: 35,000-40,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. The Guntur Sannam chilli is grown in and around Guntur and Warangal in the state of Andhra Pradesh in India.
Super Chili chili pepper: 40,000-50,000 Scovilles. These small peppers grow upright in clusters and mature from light green to red, often with shades of orange in between.
Santaka chili pepper: 40,000-50,000 Scovilles. From Japan, the Santaka chili pepper is a hot and flavorful Asian variety, perfect for Asian cooking, especially stir-fries.
Tien Tsin pepper: 50,000 - 75,000 Scovilles. The Tien Tsin is named after the province in China where its harvest originally took place.
Bird’s Eye: 50,000-100,000 Scovilles. The tiny Bird’s Eye Chili originated in Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, The Philippines, and surrounding countries, but they can now be found all over the world.
Chiltepin chili pepper: 50,000 to 100,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. The Chiltepin, or Chiltepine, is a tiny, round or oval shaped, red to orange-red chile, measuring about .8cm in diameter.
Thai chili pepper: 50,000 - 100,000 Scovilles. Despite the common belief, there is no single "Thai chili pepper" though most candidates for the title are small in size and high in heat or pungency. There are at least 79 separate varieties of chili that have appeared from three species in Thailand.
Dundicut chili pepper: 55,000-65,000 Scovilles. Capsicum Annuum. These small, round chili peppers from Pakistan grow to about ½ inch to 1 inch in diameter, and are dark red in color.
New Mex XX Hot chili pepper: 60,000-70,000 Scovilles. Another of the many New Mexico varieties, the New Mex XX Hot is just that- very hot.
Diablo Grande chili pepper: 60,000-100,000 Scovilles. The Diablo Grande comes from the same group that includes jalapenos, poblanos, cayenne, and Serrano peppers.
Malagueta chili pepper: 60,000-100,000 Scovilles. The Malagueta chili pepper is similar in appearance to the Bird’s Eye chili or the Thai chili because of its bright red color and short, tapered body. It starts out green and matures to red, and grows to only about 2 inches.
Charleston Hot chili pepper: 70,000-100,000 Scovilles. Similar to the Carolina Cayenne, the Charleston Hot is a variety of Cayenne created by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in South Carolina.
Red Amazon chili pepper: 75,000 Scovilles. The Red Amazon is actually dried Tabasco chile, but since it is so commonly known in this form, we included it separately here.
Yatsafusa chili pepper: 75,000 Scovilles. Also known as Japanese chile. Originating in Japan, these chiles come from small plants (the name refers to a dwarf tree) and grow upward in clusters around yellow flowers.
Tabiche chili pepper: 85,000-115,000 Scovilles. Originally from India, the Tabiche pepper can now be found growing worldwide and often year-round, but it does best in hot, dry climates.
Bahamian chili pepper: 95,000-110,000 Scovilles. As its name suggests, the Bahamian pepper originates from the Bahamas, where it is still one of the major agricultural crops.
Carolina Cayenne chili pepper: 100,000-125,000 Scovilles. Similar in appearance to the original cayenne, this variety is twice as hot and appears slightly wider.
African Bird’s Eye/ African Devil: 175,000 Scovilles. Also sometimes known as Piri Piri, the African Bird’s Eye is a small chile, growing to only about 1 inch, but they pack a lot of punch.
Jamaican Hot: 100,000-200,000 Scovilles. As the name suggests, these peppers are from Jamaica, but have become popular around the world.
Datil: 100,000 – 300,000 Scovilles. The Datil packs the intense heat of a Habanero or a Scotch Bonnet, but its flavor is sweeter, and more fruity.
Scotch bonnet: 100,000 - 350,000 Scovilles. This pepper is a cultivar of the habanero and is among the hottest peppers anywhere. Its name derives from its resemblance to the Scottish Tam o’ Shanter hat, though it appears primarily in the Carribean and in Guyana and the Maldives.
Habanero chili pepper: 100,000 - 350,000 Scovilles. Related to the Scotch Bonnet. This one is the granddaddy of all the hot peppers in terms of heat level. Grown mainly on the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, its coloring is yellow-orange, orange or bright red, depending upon when it's harvested. Average Size 1 to 2 1/2 inches long and 1 to 2 inches diameter and tam-shaped.
Fatalii: 125,000-325,000 Scovilles. The Fatalii comes from central and southern Africa, and is one of the hottest peppers in the world. With the heat level of a habanero, it has a more fruity, citrus flavor, and packs an instant, intense burn, unlike the habanero, whose heat “sneaks up on you.”
Devil's Tongue: 125,000-325,000 Scovilles. The Devil’s Tongue is similar in color and shape to the Fatalii, but with smoother skin and smaller size.
Madame Jeanette: 225,000 Scovilles. Named after a famous Brazilian prostitute, the Madame Jeanette has the shape of a bell pepper, but the intense heat of a habanero.
Tiger Paw NR chili pepper: 265,000-328,000 Scovilles. Developed in Charleston, South Carolina, the Tiger Paw NR is an extra-hot bright orange habanero variety.
Trinidad Scorpion chili pepper: 300,000+ Scovilles. These red, wrinkled peppers resemble the scorpion, hence the name, and are known for their intense heat.
Chocolate Habanero chili pepper: 300,000-425,000 Scovilles. The Chocolate Habanero, also known as "Congo Black" or "Black Habanero," is one of the hottest peppers originating from the Caribbean.
Caribbean Red Habanero: 300,000 - 475,000 Scovilles. This extremely hot pepper, originally from the Yucatn peninsula in Mexico, is now also cultivated in the Carribean and around North America.
Red Savina Habanero: 200,000 - 580,000 Scovilles. This pepper is a cultivar of the habanero. It once held the Guinness Record for the hottest chili pepper, but the Bhut Jolokia now claims that prize.
Bhut Jolokia: 1,001,304 Scovilles. Now, truly the hottest chili pepper around!
Naga Jolokia - It's just another name for the Bhut Jolokia chili pepper.
Ghost Pepper or Ghost Chili - It's just another name for the
Bhut Jolokia chili pepper.
7-Pot Chili Pepper - Over 1 Million Scovilles. The heat of the 7-Pot pepper is similar to the Bhut Jolokia but with a more fruity and nutty flavor, like other Caribbean peppers. It is becoming more popular and well-known among chile-heads, but the seeds are very rare and hard to find.
Gibralta/Spanish Naga Chili Pepper - 1,086,844 Scovilles. The Gibralta Naga, or Spanish Naga, is of course grown in Spain, but was developed in the UK from Indian chili peppers.
Infinity Chili Pepper - 1,176,182 Scovilles. Created in England by Nick Woods of “Fire Foods,” the Infinity Chili pepper held the World Record for the world’s hottest chili pepper for two weeks in 2011, before it was ousted by the Naga Viper chili.
New Mexico Scorpion - 1,191,595 Scovilles. A New Mexico-based team has developed a super-hot chile known as the "New Mexico Scorpion" The New Mexico Scorpion has been rated at 1,191,595 Scoville Heat Units by an independent laboratory.
Naga Viper - 1,382,118 Scovilles. The Naga Viper (capsicum chinense) has been rated at 1,382,118 Scoville Heat Units (SHU), according to tests conducted by the Warwick HRI Mineral Analysis Laboratory, UK, in November 2010.
Trinidad Scorpion Butch T - 1,463,700 Scovilles. The Trinidad Scorpion Butch T has been rated at 1,463,700 Scoville Heat Units (SHU), according to recent tests. It was propagated by Butch Taylor of Zydeco Hot Sauce and grown by the Chilli Factory.
Dorset Naga Chili Pepper - 1 million- 1.5 million Scovilles. (Capsicum Chinense) Development of the Dorset Naga began near Dorset, England, around 2001 when Joy and Michael Michaud of "Peppers by Post" bought a Naga Morich plant from an Oriental foods store in southern England.
Chocolate 7-Pot Chili Pepper - Recently tested between 923,000 and 1.85 million Scovilles, with an average of 1,169,058. Only the Moruga Scorpion scored higher. It is suspected that it could reach 2 million in the future.
Trinidad Moruga Scorpion - 2,009,231 Scovilles. In February 2012, the 2012 New Mexico Chile Conference, in association with Jim Duffy of Refining Fire Chiles, announced that the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion is the hottest chili pepper in the world. Clocking in at 2,009,231 Scoville Units, this chili pepper is beyond blistering.
Carolina Reaper - With a Guinness-submitted 1,569,383 SHU (scoville heat units) average and recently measured peak levels of over 2,200,000 SHU, SMOKIN’ ED’S CAROLINA REAPER® has officially completed its long journey to the top of “super-hot” chili charts.
More Chili Pepper Information
Got a huge harvest of fresh chilis this year? Here are some great resources on preservations methods:
Here's some interesting Jalapeño information. This is all from the Jalapeno Madness cookbook, so if you like what you see and would like more information, including dozens and dozens of recipes from breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and more, order a copy today.
How about a bit of chili pepper history and information?