Ways to Preserve Hot Peppers

Last Updated on September 22, 2020 by Diane Hoffmaster

Jalapenos, habaneros, serranoes and many more types of chili peppers grow well in backyard gardens. There are only so many hot pepper recipes a person can make and one or two peppers goes a long way in terms of heat! I decided to share a few ways to preserve hot peppers in case you were suffering from an overabundance of them like I am! From your favorite hot sauce recipes to good old fashioned canning, Don’t let good food go to waste!

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large metal bowl of chili peppers on the ground in the garden

Ways to Preserve Hot Peppers From The Garden

Learning how to preserve the harvest will help reduce food waste. Chili peppers are amazingly versatile but won’t last long once you pick them.

If you are looking for good recipes for peppers, try my Zesty Jalapeno and Bacon Deviled Egg Recipe or my Sausage Cheese Biscuits Recipe with Jalapenos.

Preserving hot peppers will allow you to enjoy a touch of heat all year long! Here are a few of my favorite ways to preserve chili peppers from my garden.

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basket of assorted hot peppers for preserving

Dehydrate Chili Peppers

This is my favorite method to preserve hot peppers. We dry literally hundreds and hundreds of chili peppers and keep them in large plastic containers with lids.

We usually grind them up in our mortar and pestle to make a nice, spicy powder. The husband and boy child love everything spicy so it gets sprinkled on everything from spaghetti to macaroni and cheese.

If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, you can put the dried chili peppers in a food processor. However, PLEASE use caution! You will aerosolize a lot of powder and this stuff hurts to get in your eyes and lungs. Do it outside and turn your face away when you turn the machine on.

Total time to dehydrate peppers will depend your dehydrator and how thick your peppers are. Ours take a few days. Test out a pepper before you turn the whole unite off. Add more time if needed. You want them good and dry! Ours last for about 6 months and we use them on everything!

jar of pickled peppers on a cutting board

Make Pickled Peppers

Pickling is another incredibly easy way to preserve peppers. Just slice off the tops and slice the peppers in half length wise or into rings, depending on your preference.

If you like a lot of heat, keep the seeds intact. Otherwise just remove the seeds and membrane after you cut them. Place your sliced hot peppers into a clean mason jar.

Pack it about 3/4 of the way to the top. Fill the jar with white vinegar, leaving an inch or so at the top. You can add garlic and spices if you would like. Try different types of vinegar for a bit of variety. Make sure to cover the peppers completely with vinegar before storing in the refrigerator.

Pickled peppers will keep for quite a while like this. There are a ton of options when it comes to Mason jars nowadays. Check out the selection at the Mason Jars Company before you make your selection.

ice cube tray of pepper puree for freezing

Learn how to freeze peppers

You can chop the hot peppers up and freeze them. In addition, you can also puree them in a food processor in a bit of olive oil or water. Then, place the resulting paste in ice cube trays for freezing.

Again, if you like heat, just keep the seeds in the peppers before processing. You can use these in just about any recipe that you want a bit of heat in. It is especially good in chili, jambalaya, etouffe and many other southern recipes.

jar of preserved hot peppers on a wooden table

Can Peppers be canned? YES!

Canning peppers is one way to preserve them, although you do need to make sure you know what you are doing. You can can sweet and hot peppers, although they lose their ‘firmness’ during the process.

Canning is not my favorite way to preserve food because it honestly terrifies me! However, if you want a good recipe for canned peppers, check out the website HealthyCanning.com. They have a simple recipe to can in vinegar.

Make sure your pantry has plenty of room for all the food you can. In general, you will end up with a TON of jars of food for long term storage.

Harissa in a glass jar close-up and hot chili peppers on a white background

Make chili pepper recipes in bulk

If you have a lot of hot peppers you could do a whole bunch of cooking and then freeze the meals and dishes that you make.

Spend the day making a gallon of your favorite homemade salsa recipe! Hot sauce, chili, chutney, and many other pepper recipes freeze quite well and all of them need a few hot peppers. Cooking in bulk now may save you lots of time later this winter!

fermented peppers in glass jars

Photo courtesy of http://www.happy-mothering.com

Preserving peppers by fermenting them

How do you preserve hot peppers without canning them? Make fermented peppers! This is a totally new idea for me but you should definitely check out Happy Mothering for the details. Fermented foods are supposedly very good for your health and this seems like a fascinating idea!

If you want to get started with fermentation, check out the reCAP® Fermenter. It is an easy,  waterless airlock set that ferments and stores culinary creations that are delicious and good for your health.

Like this post about ways to preserve hot peppers? Check out these preserving tips, too:

  • How to Preserve Fresh Herbs Need some unique and creative ways to preserve fresh herbs? Check out my tips for freezing, dehydrating and so much more! 
  • Tips for Freezing Produce Freezing fruits and vegetables is one of the easiest ways to preserve food, however, there are a few key things to keep in mind. 
  • Preserving Blueberries My first attempt at canning. What worked and what didn’t!

There are a ton of creative ways to use hot peppers and one plant can yield quite a bit. If you have extras you can try your hand at salt curing hot peppers or try one of the methods I mentioned above to preserve hot peppers for use throughout the entire year. What’s your favorite recipe to use hot peppers in?

Comments

  1. Jenna Wood says

    I really like the freezing idea, I could see myself using these preserved peppers to cool with all year round. I especially like that this method gets all of the cleaning and processing out of the way up front.

  2. We are big hot pepper fans over here-although our garden didn’t produce many this year. Thanks for the reminder that I need to add more fermented foods to my diet!

  3. Great ideas. I just starting fermenting this summer, so I think I’ll be trying that w/some of our peppers!

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