What is the poblano pepper spice level?

In this brief guide, we will answer the query, “What is the poblano pepper spice level?”. We will also discuss poblano peppers including its taste and appearance. Moreover, we will also talk about the dried ancho chilies and how poblano pepper is used in cooking.

What is the poblano pepper spice level?

Poblano pepper spice are mildly spicy peppers with bold flavors, measuring 1,000–1,5000 on the Scoville scale. They have a similar heat intensity as Anaheim peppers (500-2,500 Scoville Heat Units). 

They are way hotter than sweet pepper varieties such as bell peppers (0 SHU), banana peppers (0-500 SHU), and pimento peppers (100-500 SHU), but much milder in comparison to the hot peppers such as jalapeno peppers (2,500-8,000 SHU), serrano peppers (10,000-16,500 SHU), and habanero peppers (100,000-350,000 SHU).

What are poblano peppers?

They are the large green Mexican peppers that turn red when fully ripened. Poblano peppers fall under the milder category of peppers, though spice levels can vary widely according to their maturity stage. The fully ripe reddish poblano peppers are hotter than the green ones. They have mildly hot and earthy flavors. It was named after the residents of Puebla who are known as poblanos.

What is the taste of poblano pepper like?

Poblano peppers have a rich, earthy flavor with some peppery undertones when they are green. As they ripen and turn red, we can sense some sweetness as well. Likewise, when dried, ancho chilies have an earthy sweetness complemented by some smokiness.

What does poblano pepper look like?

The physical features of poblano pepper are similar to the bell peppers, only they aren’t as round as bell peppers. They are angular wedge-shaped peppers with thick skin and a large interior cavity. They turn from green to red as they reach maturity and their spiciness increases as they mature.  The poblano peppers usually have a waxy outer skin which gives them a shiny outlook.

It’s more common to find green poblano peppers in the market. Red poblanos take longer to mature, so they are often used to manufacture ancho chilies rather than being in their fresh form. Ancho chiles are the dehydrated and dried poblano peppers that have been fully ripened and dried.

Are dried ancho chilies spicier than fresh poblano pepper?

The spice level of ancho chilies largely depends on the way they were dried. It is believed that dried peppers have the same amount of heat as fully matured red poblano peppers, and fresh peppers, and may even be hotter. Ancho chilies have the same level of heat as poblano pepper, ranging from 1,000 to 2,000 Scoville Heat Units. 

The main contrast between the dried anchos and poblanos is that anchos have a deeper and more earthy flavor and color. After drying, wrinkling, and crushing the dark red fully ripened peppers, the flavors drastically change. 

There are many dried varieties made from poblano peppers and Mulato pepper is another one of them. While the poblano peppers are dried when they are in their ripened stage (red color), poblanos are matured past the bright red stage to a very dark, reddish brown color before drying to get the Mulato pepper.

Mulato peppers are almost black since they are derived from the reddish-brown fully ripened poblanos. They are slightly hotter and smokier than regular peppers because they are prepared from the fully ripened poblanos, with Scoville units ranging between 2,500 and 3,000.

How can we use poblano pepper in cooking?

Poblano pepper is one of the most popular spices used in different savory Mexican cuisines like tacos, enchiladas, and, famously, chiles rellenos, etc. one of the most popular poblano pepper recipe is deep-fried stuffed poblano peppers which are also called chiles rellenos. You can fill the pepper with ground beef, chicken, or black beans flavored with different spices. 

Unlike other hot peppers, poblanos have a very mild flavor so the poblanos make perfect stuffed peppers. You can also use raw poblano peppers with mashed avocado, chopped cilantro, and lime juice for an easy guacamole recipe. Also the red poblano peppers can be dried and utilized in a number of popular dishes.

You can find some of the recipes where you can use poblano peppers here.


In this brief guide, we have answered the query, “What is the poblano pepper spice level?”. We have also discussed poblano peppers including its taste and appearance. Moreover, we have also talked about the dried ancho chilies and how poblano pepper is used in cooking.




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