by Ingredient

Red Pepper

Region Produced

China, Japan, India, Mexico, Africa, and Louisiana

Traditional Uses

Red Pepper is used to achieve the characteristically hot flavor of Mexican, Creole, Cajun, Thai, Szechuan, and Indian cooking. It also is used in chili, Spanish rice, and barbecue sauce as well as meats, salads, and casseroles.

Aroma & Taste

Red pepper is a pungent, hot powder with a strong bite.


Capsicum peppers are native to Mexico, Central America, the West Indies, and parts of South America. The Spanish discovered the pods in the New World and brought them back to Europe. Before the arrival of Spaniards, Indians in Peru and Guatemala used capsicum medicinally to treat stomach and other ailments.




Use small amounts of hot red peppers. It is a biting condiment, and the flavor intensifies as it is cooked.

For a spicy snack, add ground red pepper and salt to hot oil; sauté blanched almonds until golden. Or add a dash of red pepper, onion, cheese, and bacon to beaten eggs for scrambled eggs or omelet. Try adding red pepper to barbecue steak sauce. Use it to marinate or baste steaks.


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