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Red Chile is Green Chile

Red Chile and Green Chile are the Same Thing!

Did you know red and green chiles both grow on the same plant?
Every red chile begins as a green chile and then matures to red.

We often refer to both the red and green chiles as green chile. There are dozens of different varieties of green chile and some of them are better to use when red. Varieties that are designated as red have less flesh and a smoother heat with more robust flavor. They will dry quickly in the sun and can be used at any time. For example, the dried pods can be reconstituted in water to make full flavored red chile sauce during the winter. Traditionally the dry red pods are ground into red powder for convenient use and easy storage.

Most of the red varieties have thinner skin and minimal flesh compared to others. For example, the Hatch Red Hot Sandia Hot is very thin and ideal for drying and making red chile powder.

Red Chile Roasting

Other varieties like Hatch Red XHot Ms. Junie have thicker flesh. The thicker Ms. Junie pod will provide more flesh when roasted and peeled, but when drying it may need to be cut open and oven dried.

There are no solid rules for green chile –  as both red chiles and green chiles are used fresh and dried for powder. In New Mexico there can be two or more harvests from the same chile plants. First the green chile harvest and then weeks later one or two red chile harvests. Green and red chile from the same plant may taste different and not have the same amount of heat. In our view all green chile is delicious, red or green.

Red Chile is Mature Green Chile