Charred peppers just need a sprinkle of salt

Shishito peppers are small green peppers of Japanese origin. These peppers ripen from green to red, but they’re typically harvested while still green. 

These peppers have a very thin skin. Their delicate nature means that they will cook quickly compared to heartier varieties like bell peppers. They are often served lightly charred or blistered. This can be done in a pan or on the grill. Either way, it will take less than 10 minutes. After they’re charred, they can be served as a snack with just a sprinkle of crunchy salt, or incorporated into a dish. 

How to cook shishito peppers 

Char the peppers:
Charring peppers in a pan

Charring or blistering these small peppers is simple. All you need is a pan and a heat proof spoon or spatula. 

In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat a drizzle of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the peppers in an even layer. Cook, without stirring, 3 to 4 minutes, or until lightly browned; season with salt and pepper. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 5 minutes, or until charred and softened. Season to your liking and serve immediately. 

Are shishito peppers spicy?

Most shishito peppers are not spicy. They’re so mild that they can be eaten whole without causing any sweaty discomfort. However, for some reason, one in every 10-20 peppers has a bit of a kick. This surprising spice may be due to excessive sun exposure during growth. There’s no reason to worry, even the spiciest shishito peppers aren’t as hot as a jalapeño, and eating them is completely safe. The occasional hot pepper just makes eating these as a snack a little more exciting. 

Can you eat shishito peppers raw?

Shishito peppers can be eaten raw, although it’s more common to serve them charred or blistered. If eaten raw, they will have a slightly sweeter, fruiter taste. 

Recipes with shishito peppers 

Pair shishito peppers with crunchy green beans for a healthy green side dish. 

Top charred peppers with fragrant lime salt for extra fruity flavor. 

Roasted peppers add flavor and texture to this Mexican-inspired grain bowl.