One of the most magical parts of Mexican and Latin food for me is roasted peppers! Whether they are in a sauce, salsa, or a dish itself, the flavors of a roasted pepper are amazing! Learn How To Roast Peppers for all of your favorite Mexican and Latin recipes!
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This process works for all sorts of peppers. I tend to use poblanos the most for a lot of recipes because they have a lot of great flavor with a mild heat, so I can eat a LOT of them! Check out some of my favorite roasted pepper recipes below. But first, this is How To Roast Peppers!
First, get your peppers washed and ready to go. Put one of your oven racks on the very top of the oven (you want those peppers close to the heat coils!). Put your peppers on the top rack toward the middle (the edges do not get the same heat) and make sure they fit. If not, lower the rack one slot.
Turn on your oven to the broil setting, which is a very high heat at the top of your oven. Leave your oven door cracked open as a lot of heat or steam will be happening and get your peppers under that roaster. The amount of time it takes will vary on (1) pepper size (2) how hot your oven really is. Let them roast until they are starting to blister and get black. Black is okay, but don’t let them get too far! If they get too black, they will start to turn to charcoal (this has happened to me, unfortunately). Then rotate the peppers and continue that process until most all of the pepper is roasted. It may take 2-4 turns (depending on the shape of the pepper) and 3 or so minutes per side for large peppers like poblanos. The first few sides take a little longer.
When the peppers are all nice and roasted, remove them from the oven and place them in a tupperware or plastic bag and seal it up. This steaming process as they cool will pull the skins away from the pepper flesh, making them easier to peel. The longer you can leave them the better, since peeling will be easier, but let them sit for at least 10-15 minutes. This is also a great process to do ahead of time. I will roast peppers a day in advance for a faster and easier recipe.
When the peppers are cool enough to tough and have steamed, grab one at a time and gently peel the peppers. You want to apply just a little pressure and essentially “wipe” the skins off. You want to get most of the skin off but do not worry if there are some little bits here and there.
From this point, your next step in How To Roast Peppers depends on how you are using them. If you are blending them in a sauce or chopping them up, remove the stems and seeds and don’t worry about them breaking. If you are using them for a chile relleno, stuffing them, etc, try to be gentle with them so there are not too many holes. For rellenos and stuffing, I leave the tops on but remove the seeds. The seeds and white veins on the inside are where all the heat is, so you can leave them if you want but it will make them spicier (and sometimes the seeds are not too pleasant).
Here are some of my favorite recipes using roasted peppers!
Quick Guide for How To Roast Peppers:
- Wash peppers. Put oven rack on top shelf and turn to broil setting.
- Place peppers on top rack and leave oven door open a crack.
- Roast peppers until they start to blister and have black spots.
- Rotate peppers and repeat roasting until all sides are roasted and most of skin is at least blistered.
- Place roasted peppers in a sealed bag or container. Let sit for at least 15 minutes to sweat.
- Gently peel skins off of peppers and prepare as needed for recipe.