Shishito peppers are a type of pepper commonly used in Japanese cuisine.
They are small and slender, with a mild flavor that sometimes has a slight spiciness.
While they can be enjoyed fresh, they are often grilled or stir-fried.
Shishito peppers can be found in Asian markets or some specialty grocery stores.
If you’re unable to find them, several substitutes can be used.
In this article, we will discuss the five best substitutes for shishito peppers.
What is Shishito Pepper?
Shishito peppers are a type of capsicum that is commonly used in Japanese cuisine.
They are small and slender, with a slightly pointy end.
The peppers range in color from green to red, and they have smooth, thin skin.
When cooked, they are typically roasted or grilled, and they are often served with a sprinkle of sea salt.
Shishito peppers have a mild flavor, with just a hint of sweetness.
However, every so often, you will come across a much hotter pepper than the others.
These peppers are known as “Scoville peppers,” named after the Scoville scale, which measures the heat level in chili peppers.
In general, Shishito peppers fall somewhere in the middle of the Scoville scale, making them fairly mild as far as chili peppers go.
Whether you’re looking for a little bit of heat or just a mellow flavor, Shishito peppers are worth trying.
The 5 Best Substitutes for Shishito Peppers
Shishito peppers are a popular ingredient known for their mild heat and unique flavor.
However, if you cannot find shishito peppers or need a substitute with a similar taste profile, there are several alternatives to consider.
In this guide, we will compare the top 5 substitutes for shishito peppers, discussing their key characteristics and suggesting proper ratios to help you find suitable alternatives.
|Similar in appearance and flavor to shishito peppers, but can vary in heat level
|Use an equal amount of padron peppers as a substitute for shishito peppers
|Mild and sweet, with a crunchy texture
|Use an equal amount of bell peppers as a substitute for shishito peppers
|Mild to moderate heat with a slightly sweet taste
|Use an equal amount of banana peppers as a substitute for shishito peppers
|Similar in appearance to shishito peppers, but slightly hotter with a fruitier flavor
|Use an equal amount of fresno peppers as a substitute for shishito peppers
|Moderate to hot heat with a distinct flavor and widely available
|Use half the amount of jalapeno peppers as a substitute for shishito peppers (adjust to taste, as jalapenos are spicier)
Now, let’s dive into each substitute in more detail:
1 – Padron Peppers
Native to the northeastern region of South America, Padron peppers (Capsicum annuum) are chili pepper popular in Spanish cuisine.
In recent years, Padron peppers have gained popularity outside of their native region and can now be found in markets worldwide.
The peppers are small and green and have a mild, slightly sweet flavor.
They are typically cooked whole in olive oil until they blister and char.
Padron peppers are often served as appetizers or side dishes and pair well with meats and seafood.
The peppers can also be used in sauces and salsas.
- Key Characteristics: Padron peppers are similar in appearance and flavor to shishito peppers but can vary in heat level, with some being milder and others spicier.
- Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of padron peppers as a substitute for shishito peppers. Adjust the quantity based on personal preference and desired heat level.
2 – Bell Peppers
There are few veggies as versatile as bell pepper.
Whether you’re adding a splash of color to your salad or stuffing them with your favorite filling, bell peppers are a delicious and healthy addition to any meal.
And with so many different varieties to choose from, there’s a perfect pepper for everyone.
Try a red or yellow bell pepper if you’re looking for sweet and crunchy pepper.
For something a little spicier, go for a green or orange pepper.
Or, if you want the ultimate flavor, try a roasted bell pepper.
No matter how you enjoy them, bell peppers are a tasty way to add nutrition to your diet.
So next time you’re at the grocery store, pick up a few bell peppers and add them to your shopping cart.
- Key Characteristics: Bell peppers are mild and sweet, with a crunchy texture. They do not possess the same heat as shishito peppers.
- Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of bell peppers as a substitute for shishito peppers. Adjust the quantity based on personal preference and desired flavor.
3 – Banana Peppers
Banana peppers are chili pepper that gets its name from its shape, which is similar to that of a banana.
These peppers are typically about four to six inches long and can be yellow or green.
They are relatively mild in heat, with a Scoville rating of around 500.
However, this is variability, and some banana peppers can be pretty spicy.
These peppers are often used in salads or as a topping on pizza.
They can also be pickled and used as a condiment.
Banana peppers are a versatile ingredient that can add a bit of spice and flavor to many different dishes.
- Key Characteristics: Banana peppers offer a mild to moderate heat level with a slightly sweet taste. They can be used as a substitute for shishito peppers in various dishes.
- Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of banana peppers as a substitute for shishito peppers. Adjust the quantity based on personal preference and desired heat level.
4 – Fresno Peppers
Fresno peppers are a type of chili pepper named after the city of Fresno, California.
They are typically bright red or orange, and they have a moderate to the hot level of spiciness.
Fresno peppers are often used in Mexican and Southwestern cuisine, and they can be found fresh, canned, or dried.
When choosing a Fresno pepper, look for one that is firm and shiny with no signs of wrinkling or bruising.
Store the pepper in a plastic bag in the refrigerator, and use it within a week for the best flavor.
Fresno peppers can be used in various dishes, including salsa, chili, and tacos.
They can also be added to eggs, rice, and beans to boost flavor.
- Key Characteristics: Fresno peppers are similar in appearance to shishito peppers but are slightly hotter and have a fruitier flavor. They can provide a suitable substitute.
- Proper Ratio: Use an equal amount of fresno peppers as a substitute for shishito peppers. Adjust the quantity based on personal preference and desired heat level.
5 – Jalapeno Peppers
Jalapeno peppers are one of the most popular types of chili pepper.
They originated in Mexico, and their name comes from the city of Jalapa.
Jalapeno peppers are usually green, but they can also be red, yellow, or brown.
They range from two to six inches long, and they have a mild to medium-hot flavor.
When eaten raw, jalapeno peppers can add a spicy kick to salads, salsa, and other dishes.
They can also be pickled or cooked in sauces and stews.
For those who enjoy a little heat in their food, jalapeno peppers are a great way to add spice to your meal.
- Key Characteristics: Jalapeno peppers are widely available and offer a moderate to hot level of heat with a distinct flavor. They can be used as a substitute, but keep in mind they are spicier than shishito peppers.
- Proper Ratio: Use half the amount of jalapeno peppers as a substitute for shishito peppers, and adjust to taste. Remember that jalapenos are hotter, so use caution.
When choosing the best substitutes for shishito peppers, there are a few things to keep in mind.
First, what is your dish missing? Try roasted sweet bell peppers or Padron peppers if it’s the sweetness of shishito peppers you’re after.
And if you need the heat that shishito peppers can provide, try freshno peppers or jalapeño peppers.
Whatever your dish is missing, there’s a pepper out there that can help fill the void.
So don’t be afraid to experiment until you find the perfect substitute for your shishito pepper dish.
The 5 Best Substitutes for Shishito Peppers
- Padron Peppers
- Bell Peppers
- Banana Peppers
- Fresno Peppers
- Jalapeno Peppers
- Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
- Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
Andrew Gray is a seasoned food writer and blogger with a wealth of experience in the restaurant and catering industries. With a passion for all things delicious, Andrew has honed his culinary expertise through his work as a personal chef and caterer.
His love for food led him to venture into food writing, where he has contributed to various online publications, sharing his knowledge and insights on the culinary world. As the proud owner of AmericasRestaurant.com, Andrew covers a wide range of topics, including recipes, restaurant reviews, product recommendations, and culinary tips.
Through his website, he aims to inspire and educate fellow food enthusiasts, offering a comprehensive resource for all things food-related.