Serrano Pepper

Capsicum annuum
Serrano peppers at a wholesale Mexican company in Queens New York on August 22, 08.

Serrano peppers at a wholesale Mexican company in Queens, New York on August 22, 08.

Latest Update: 
March 1, 2017


Peppers are an essential component of Mexican cuisine with an amazing diversity of different types (Aguilar-Rincón, 2010). Figure 1 shows a list of 64 different types peppers used in Mexico and in which regions of Mexico they are most popular (Diversidad de Chiles en Mejico). In the United States, it would be useful to know which regions of Mexico the customers originate from. This would provide both a sense of the types of peppers they use in their cuisine and a sense of the markets that serve Mexican customers could supply those peppers.

Serranos are the second most common pepper in Mexico after jalapeños. Serranos are used often fresh, but are also canned as “serranos en escabeche” (packed in vinegar, onions, carrots and herbs) which is used as a popular relish that is sometimes added to sauces. For fresh or cooked sauces, it is used either raw or grilled, chopped, or ground with other ingredients. The seeds are not removed.

They have moderate pungency, ranging from 15,000 to 30,0000 Scoville units.

Figure 1. Diversidad de Chiles en Mejico. Integrantes de la Red Chile. SAGARPA, which is the Secretariat of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food, similar to the United States Department of Agriculture
Serrano peppers for sale at a market in Dallas Texas in 2004.


For information on production and management of serranos, refer to the New England Vegetable Management Guide and click on "pepper".

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