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Gourmet Hacks: 5 BEST Substitutes for Piquillo Peppers

Ever faced a recipe calling for piquillo peppers and found your kitchen lacking?

You’re in the right place. We’ve all been there. Digging through our fridges, hoping for a miracle.

Today, we’re cutting straight to the chase. Five stellar swaps for these elusive peppers are coming your way.

No hassle. Just practical, straightforward options.

Because, let’s be honest, not everyone has gourmet ingredients on hand 24/7.

And that shouldn’t stop us from whipping up something amazing.

Stay with us. We’re about to make your cooking life a whole lot easier.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Piquillo Peppers

Piquillo peppers are a popular ingredient in Spanish cuisine, known for their sweet and slightly smoky flavor.

However, if you’re unable to find Piquillo peppers or want to explore different options, there are several substitutes that can provide a similar taste and texture.

SubstituteKey CharacteristicsProper Ratio
Banana PeppersMild with a tangy flavorUse an equal amount of Banana peppers as a substitute
Jalapeno PeppersSpicy with a slightly fruity tasteUse an equal amount of Jalapeno peppers as a substitute
Roasted Fresno PeppersMedium heat with a slightly sweet and smoky flavorUse an equal amount of Roasted Fresno peppers as a substitute
Cherry PeppersMild, sweet, and slightly spicyUse an equal amount of Cherry peppers as a substitute
Bell PeppersMild and versatileUse an equal amount of Bell peppers as a substitute

Now let’s dive into each substitute in more detail:

1 – Banana Peppers

banana peppers

Banana peppers are a native of South America.

They have a hot and spicy flavor with hints of sweetness to them.

In addition, they may also be found in green instead of red.

This pepper is long and varies from three to six inches in length in terms of appearance.

It has a curved shape to it as well.

These peppers typically have a thick skin and can be used in salads, stuffed with meats or cheeses, or pickled.

Banana peppers may only be about three inches long and one inch wide in terms of size.

This is why they’re typically found sliced into rounds and served as a topping for sandwiches and pizza.

They’re also found pickled and used to flavor just about any dish.

  • Key Characteristics: Banana peppers are mild with a tangy flavor. Although they may not have the same smoky notes as Piquillo peppers, they can provide a mild sweetness and tanginess in dishes like stuffed peppers or salads.
  • Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of Banana peppers as a substitute for Piquillo peppers in your recipes.

2 – Jalapeno Peppers

jalapeno peppers

Jalapenos are another popular pepper that can be found in the United States.

This chili pepper is relatively small, but packs a punch.

It has an earthy flavor with notes of citrus to it.

When cooked, it’s typically not very spicy at all.

However, if eaten raw – it could cause slight irritation to your mouth.

This pepper is most commonly found in green although it may also be red.

The skin of the jalapeno is quite thin, so this means that you can choose to use the seeds and membrane if desired.

This will add more heat to your dish – which is why it’s important to remove them if you’re looking for a milder flavor.

It’s critical to note that jalapeno peppers may be found pickled or dried as well.

This means you’ll likely find it in these forms at stores more often than fresh.

  • Key Characteristics: Jalapeno peppers are spicy with a slightly fruity taste. While they have a different flavor profile than Piquillo peppers, they can add a kick of heat and a hint of fruitiness to your dishes, especially when roasted or charred.
  • Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of Jalapeno peppers as a substitute for Piquillo peppers in your recipes.

3 – Roasted Fresno Peppers

roasted fresno peppers

This pepper is a relative of jalapeno peppers.

It’s also known as the Jalapeno M, which originated from Mexico.

It has a similar shape and size to a jalapeno while slightly milder in flavor.

To find this chili pepper at stores, you’ll likely have to go to a specialist.

However, they may also be found in the International Foods aisle at typical grocery stores.

This pepper is similar to a jalapeno in terms of heat, although it’s more of a medium spicy for most dishes.

If you’re looking for something hotter, opt for another chili pepper that isn’t on the list.

  • Key Characteristics: Roasted Fresno peppers offer medium heat with a slightly sweet and smoky flavor. They can be a suitable substitute for Piquillo peppers in recipes that require a touch of smokiness and moderate heat, such as salsas, sauces, or even stuffed peppers.
  • Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of Roasted Fresno peppers as a substitute for Piquillo peppers in your recipes.

4 – Cherry Peppers

cherry peppers

These peppers are small and spherical in nature with a bright red color.

In addition, the skin is a bit thicker than a jalapeno or Fresno pepper’s, so it can be removed before consumption if desired.

These peppers have a slightly sweet taste with just enough heat.

Cherry peppers are primarily found pickled and preserved in jars.

They’re likely to be found near other pickled items such as olives – so look for the International Foods aisle if you cannot find them elsewhere.

It’s critical to note that cherry peppers can also garnish for cocktails, salads, and sandwiches.

This means, you’ll likely find them cut into rounds alongside olives in these cases.

  • Key Characteristics: Cherry peppers are mild, sweet, and slightly spicy. While they may not have the same shape and texture as Piquillo peppers, they can provide a similar balance of sweetness and spiciness. They work well in salads, sandwiches, or as a topping for pizzas.
  • Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of Cherry peppers as a substitute for Piquillo peppers in your recipes.

5 – Bell Peppers

bell peppers

Bell peppers are a common addition to many meals.

They have a sweet flavor with little or no heat to them.

These peppers typically come in three colors – green, red, and yellow.

While they’re often used as a base for salads and sides – you can also use this pepper topping on dishes such as burgers, sandwiches, and pizzas.

There are also many recipes available online that have bell peppers as the primary ingredient.

You’ll typically find them in plastic packaging alongside other vegetables when purchasing.

However, they can be found washed and cut in the refrigerated section of local markets.

Bell peppers can also be roasted to enhance their flavor if desired.

  • Key Characteristics: Bell peppers are mild and versatile. Although they don’t possess the smoky flavor of Piquillo peppers, they can still add a vibrant color and a mild sweetness to your dishes. They are commonly used in stir-fries, fajitas, or stuffed pepper recipes.
  • Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of Bell peppers as a substitute for Piquillo peppers in your recipes.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Piquillo Peppers

Searching for alternatives to piquillo peppers? You're in luck! Explore our handpicked selection of the five best substitutes that seamlessly match the unique flavor profile of piquillo peppers.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Substitutes
Servings 4 Servings

Ingredients
  

  • Banana Peppers
  • Jalapeno Peppers
  • Roasted Fresno Peppers
  • Cherry Peppers
  • Bell Peppers

Instructions
 

  • Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  • Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
Keyword substitutes for piquillo peppers
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