You need fresh banana peppers, but there aren’t any in the store. Or perhaps your grocery store is out of them, leaving you scrambling to find a tasty substitute for banana peppers your recipe calls for.
In this article, we’ll talk about a number of substitute for banana peppers that work well in almost every recipe.
Banana peppers have had a meteoric rise in popularity due to the great success of Mexican cuisine around the world.
Banana peppers are known for their earthy, rich, and somewhat spicy flavor.
You may stuff them with vegetables and meat to produce some delectable meals.
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What Is A Banana Pepper?
What exactly is it, and how do banana peppers look?
The Banana Pepper Scoville, a member of the Capsicum Annuum family of chili peppers, has a thick skin and grows to be two to three inches long, making it easier to include into any dish.
The name of the pepper should have given you some hints; it resembles ripe bananas.
What Do Banana Peppers Taste Like?
Note that what you can find in a supermarket or a restaurant is nothing else but the pickled banana peppers or canned chilies (sounds not so great, but there are ways to make it better) that you’ll find.
Are banana peppers spicy? Are red banana peppers hot?
This pepper actually isn’t much hotter or even less spicy than pepperoncini, according to the peppers Scoville units chart, which rates heat from 0 to 500.
By giving them a tangy crunch, somewhat sweet flavor, and a moderately spicy kick, it works beautifully with pizza, tacos, stuffed peppers, sandwiches, and other spicy cuisine.
Good Substitute for Banana Peppers
1. Cayenne Peppers
Cayenne peppers are yet another excellent substitute for banana peppers in recipes that call for a little heat. These peppers, which are indigenous to Central and South America, are related to bell and jalapeño peppers.
Cayenne peppers are of the same family as bell peppers, but they are too long and thin to be used in stuffing. They are most usually used in cooking either as powder or dried chilies.
2. Pepperoncini Pepper
The banana pepper and the pepperoncini are unquestionably among the pepper combinations that are most similar to one another.
They not only have similar appearances, but they also have a comparable sweetness and flavor.
In this manner, they look to be identical to bananas and have a similar hue.
The banana pepper’s range of Scoville Heat Units, from 0 to 500, is the only distinction. The Scoville value of an Italian pepperoncini, which ranges from 100 to 500 SHU, is higher than that of a hot pepper.
3. Ancho Chilies
Ancho chilies are actually dried banana peppers. If necessary, you can use them in place of the chopped banana peppers. However, these chiles don’t quite suit the bill.
Although they are essentially the same chili, dried chilies have a flavor that is more earthy and smokey when compared to fresh chilies.
They will significantly affect how tasty the dish you are making turns out. Therefore, the amount specified in the recipe needs to be reduced in order to account for the added flavor.
4. Cubanelle Peppers
Cubanelles, or so-called Cuban peppers, are a possible replacement for banana chilis in the future.
The color of Cubanelles also changes from yellow to green to orange to red when they are fully ripe, just like the one used for your recipe.
This pepper’s reputation has really been cultivated by its thin skin, which contributes to both its sweetness and moderate taste.
Moving on to the heat level, the Cubanelle is twice as intense as banana pepper, drawing between 100 and 1000 SHU.
Consequently, whether you like it or not, you must follow through with cutting down the amount of Cubanelle if you decide to substitute it for the day’s recipe that calls for banana peppers.
5. Anaheim Peppers
Chili made with anaheim peppers is a great alternative to chili made with banana peppers, which is more common. When poblanos aren’t available, you can use this pepper, which is frequently diced or sliced.
An Anaheim pepper resembles a banana pepper in appearance and size. Despite their small size, anaheim peppers can hold a lot of food because of their sturdy walls and spacious chambers. Furthermore, you can use them both in recipes that are very similar to one another.
6. Hungarian Wax Pepper
Imagine that if banana pepper and pepperoncini are fraternal twins, then Hungarian wax is actually their obvious younger sibling.
The appearance of Hungarian wax peppers is similar to that of banana peppers, however they are slightly larger. Additionally, a flavor similar to banana peppers’ tangy-sweet combination is possible.
But these spices are not at all delicate to softly savor, which is a notable contrast.
With a SHU value of 5,000 to 10,000, hungarian wax peppers are on par with jalapeno peppers in terms of heat, and sometimes even surpass them in some cases.
If you like, you can think of it as an alternative for banana peppers, but first, be sure you’re prepared to increase your tolerance for spicy foods before considering banana peppers.
7. Bell Peppers
The usage of bell peppers is the best substitute for banana peppers that is currently accessible. These Banana Peppers were developed to be less hot.
The bell pepper variety that most closely resembles banana peppers, both in appearance and flavor, is the green bell pepper. Both yellow and green bell peppers share this characteristic. The sweetness level of their flesh is lower than that of colorful bell peppers, despite the fact that they have a strong flavor.
Bell peppers are without a doubt one of the best substitutes for banana peppers in a recipe that calls for stuffing made with banana peppers because they have sturdy walls and cavities similar to those of banana peppers.
However, one drawback of bell peppers is that their flavor of heat is not particularly potent. To give the dish you are preparing a spicy flavor, you can choose to add some chili powder or other spices either during the cooking process or after it has been finished.
You can substitute jalapenos for the banana peppers if you’d like. Jalapenos are much hotter than banana peppers. Although jalapenos have the appearance of chili peppers, they are excellent for stuffing. On the other hand, banana peppers closely resemble the common red bell pepper.
Compared to jalapenos, which are milder and more grassy in flavor, banana peppers have a more earthy flavor. When added to a salad or as a salsa ingredient, jalapenos go nicely with them.
Jalapenos are much spicy than you might think. To minimize the heat they pack, you should remove the ribs and pits from the peppers before utilizing them as an ingredient in your meals.
9. New Mexico Chilies
If you use New Mexico Chilies instead of banana peppers, you might get the same level of heat.
In addition to having an earthy flavor, red New Mexico chilies also have traces of sweetness and grassiness. Their flavor is comparable to that of banana peppers. New Mexico chilies are green, yet despite their color, they taste a lot like onions and garlic.
You can either put them into the dish as-is or toast them for five to ten minutes over medium heat. Red sauces are where they are most frequently utilized.
10. Guajillo Pepper
Guajillo peppers are much hotter than banana peppers because their heat level is comparable to that of jalapenos. They might work well as a substitution for banana peppers, but you’ll need to adjust the quantity to make them less spicy.
These peppers may be red or dark red in color and have smooth skin. In addition to being sold dry or powdered, they can also be found in paste form.
The guajillo is one of the most often used spices in traditional Mexican cuisine, just after the ancho pepper. It is commonly included into sauces and salsa.
When To Pick Banana Peppers
Every pepper has a shelf life, including banana peppers. Fresh peppers from the garden can survive up to two or three weeks if stored properly.
But what really is proper storage? Simply put, here’s what you ought to do:
Step 1: Put them in a bag or container made of plastic. In this case, glass jars can also be useful.
Step 2: Place them in the refrigerator’s vegetable drawer.
Step 3: Verify that the temperature is precisely between 40 and 45 degrees Fahrenheit in step three.
As an added plus, there is no need to wash your hot banana peppers before storing them. It will be best if they are dry because water can hasten the withering process.
Other pepper varieties, including both hot and sweet ones, can also be used with great success using this technique.
How Long Do Fresh Banana Peppers Last?
Although it is possible to acquire seeds online, it is also possible to find them at larger retail locations well in advance of the planting season.
Are Banana Peppers The Same As Pepperoncini?
The only pepper that resembles a banana pepper is a pepperoncini, and they all have a lot in common. For such an optical deception, it is fairly understandable.
Their comparable mild-tangy flavors and heat contribute to the confusion even further.
Additionally, they are both members of the chili pepper family, Capsicum annum. Even the most intelligent person would be amazed by the similarities.
But upon closer inspection, you will see that they are not quite alike. The pepperoncini has a significantly more potent spicy flavor than the banana pepper, especially in terms of taste.