Hot Pepper Identification

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You can grow a wide range of hot peppers in home gardens. Hot peppers are highly varied, and are available across the full spectrum of spiciness. You can identify most of them by size, shape and color.

hot peppers vary in shape and color
hot peppers vary in shape and color (Image: Paul Katz/Photodisc/Getty Images)

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Banana Peppers

Banana peppers are medium-sized with an elongated shape. They are pale yellow to yellow-green, turning bright red when mature. Sweet and hot varieties are available; some hot banana peppers are referred to as Hungarian wax peppers.

banana peppers come in both sweet and hot
banana peppers come in both sweet and hot (Image: Dale Miller/iStock/Getty Images)

Jalapeno Peppers

Jalapeno peppers are small with a blunt, oblong shape. The color is bright green to purple-green, maturing to red. The flavor can range from sweet to mild to very hot, depending on the variety.

Jalapenos are small but have big flavor.
Jalapenos are small but have big flavor. (Image: jirkaejc/iStock/Getty Images)

Habanero Peppers

Habaneros are small and lantern-shaped. Their flavor is extremely hot, and the color varies from bright orange to light green.

Habanero Peppers are extremely hot.
Habanero Peppers are extremely hot. (Image: Steve Hix/Somos Images/Fuse/Fuse/Getty Images)

Anaheim Peppers

Anaheim peppers are similar in appearance to jalapeno peppers, but larger and with a more elongated shape. The color varies from light green to red, and the flavor can be mild or hot. They are sometimes referred to as New Mexican chiles.

Anaheim Peppers look similar to jalapenos.
Anaheim Peppers look similar to jalapenos. (Image: Jane Tyson/iStock/Getty Images)

Cherry Peppers

Small and round, cherry peppers are medium green when immature, and become bright red when ripe. Flavor ranges from sweet to hot.

stuffed cherry peppers
stuffed cherry peppers (Image: diamant24/iStock/Getty Images)

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