Serrano peppers are popular in Mexican cooking and are esteemed for their flavor, for for their thin, tender skins that don't need to be peeled, and most importantly, for their powerful heat. If you don't have fresh serrano chilies, the best substitutes are fresh habaneros, gueros or jalapenos. If even these are unavailable, however, you can use readily available crushed red pepper flakes, which are typically made from dried cayenne peppers. Because these are fruitier than serranos, the flavor of your finished dish will be different, but you'll still have the heat you desire.
Things You'll Need
- Measuring spoon
Determine how many serrano chilies your recipe requires.
Measure out 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper for each seeded, deveined and chopped serrano called for in your recipe.
Add and cook the crushed red pepper following the recipe's directions for serrano chilies.
Taste your dish after you add the pepper flakes, and add more to suit your taste if desired.
- Photo Credit Ablestock.com/AbleStock.com/Getty Images
A Substitute for Crushed Tomatoes in Tomato Sauce
Recipes for tomato sauce often call for crushed tomatoes, but the type of tomato you use is a matter of taste. Most...
Hot Pepper Flakes Substitute
In a pinch hot pepper flakes can be substituted with a variety of ingredients including cayenne pepper, hot sauce or chili powder.
Substitutions for Jalapeno Chili Peppers
The jalapeno pepper is a small pepper that packs a big punch. The average jalapeno is about 2 inches long and has...
Serrano vs. Jalapeno
Jalapeno and serrano peppers look almost like twins. Both are bright-to-deep green in appearance, although a serrano tends to be sleeker and...
Substitutes for Scotch Bonnet
The Scotch Bonnet pepper's bright, colorful exterior gives it the innocuous appearance of a toothsome piece of fresh fruit. The reality of...
How to Cut Serrano Pepper
Learn how to properly cut and deseed a pepper, in this case a Serrano pepper. This pepper will be minced and used...