Do jalapeños turn red

In this brief guide, we will address the query, “do jalapeños turn red?” We will also discuss what is the shelf life of jalapeños, how they can be used, and where you should store them.

Do jalapeños turn red?

Yes, jalapeños turn red. Naturally, jalapeños change their color to a vibrant red one when they are older. Red jalapeños are hot and also exhibit different striations, which indicates their hotness.

This color change has been associated with the ripeness phase of the product, but some others have doubts about it. However, red jalapeños are indeed hotter than green jalapeños.

Are red jalapeños hotter than green jalapeños?

It has been reported by several people that red jalapeños do exhibit a hotter flavor than green ones because when they turn red, more capsaicin is produced.

All green jalapeños will transform into red ones as they ripen, it occurs naturally and let us taste a hotter and more complex flavor. To understand why this phenomenon occurs, let’s take a quick look at the life cycle of jalapeños.

  •  It all starts with the germination stage, in the next few weeks jalapeños are nothing but tiny seedlings.
  • For up to two to three weeks from the previous stage, jalapeños have reached the juvenile stage.
  • After juvenile, jalapeño starts growing quicker up to the eight weeks of age.
  • Once jalapeños have reached maturation, they will exhibit their full size and the flowering stage will start.
  • The jalapeño plant will start to flower, whose products will be tiny jalapeños.
  • Jalapeños have a greenish color when they first appear, until maturity the color changes.
  • The ideal time to harvest jalapeños is after 5 to 6 months.

What is capsaicin?

Capsaicin is the compound responsible for causing the hotness of chili peppers. This substance can be used for different purposes and it has a significant presence in the industry. Some of their main uses are

  • Pesticide. Capsaicin provokes the repeal of animals from places or objects. Also, it works to prevent animals from chewing objects.
  • External analgesic. Capsaicin can be used externally and applied to the skin, capsaicin cream is used for its anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Fragrance ingredient.
  • Skin conditioning. Jalapeños contain various antioxidants and vitamin C, important to keep a good-looking skin. It also helps to delay aging signs. You can read more here.

You can check some other facts about the chemical composition of capsaicin if you click here.

How to choose red jalapeños?

You can get red jalapeños at your local market, or if some green jalapeños have ripened. However, certain features will let you know which one is the most appetizing and will exhibit the best flavor.

Make sure you check for these requirements when purchasing jalapeños

  • Firm texture. They should not be extremely soft, look for the ones with a firm touch.
  • Avoid shriveled jalapeños. When jalepños have wrinkles it means they might be a little too dry, their quality might not be the best.
  • Look for ripe jalapeños. They will be dark green, red, or orange.

As you can tell, picking the best jalapeños is not a hard task and will guarantee the best flavor and quality. It is also needed to develop a proper storage method to preserve the quality for longer. 

How can you tell the hotness of a jalapeño?

Certain signs will let you know when jalapeños are hotter than others. If your thing is the spicy sensation, make sure you check for the following features

  • White lines.  The lines will be helpful to determine the level of ripeness of the jalapeño. Older peppers will have a lot of white lines, which means they are really hot! If you are looking for a milder spiciness, choose green and smooth peppers.
  • Darker color. Green jalapeños will not have that much capsaicin, look for dark green units, also red jalapeños do the job.

If you are a visual person, this video will help you determine what peppers are hotter!

What is the shelf life of jalapeños?

Fresh jalapeños do not have a long shelf life, like any other fresh item, they will only retain their quality for up to a week or two when stored in the fridge. If you have chopped them, the shelf life decreases to 4 days maximum.

The good thing is that jalapeños can also be bought canned, they last longer this way. Canned jalapeños come with a best-by date, which only indicates when the best quality is guaranteed. It is not the same as the expiration date.

Other FAQs about Jalapenos that you may be interested in.

How to chop jalapeno 

Can jalapeños go in the fridge?

How to counteract too much jalapeno?


In this brief guide, we have addressed the query, “do jalapeños turn red?” We have also discussed other queries related to the subject at hand. 

Hope you found this blog useful. If you have any questions, please let us know.


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