Pepper Types

Cool Pepper Types and Recipes

There are lots of pepper types, but when we generally think of pepper, we think mainly about its uses in making things hotter.  Pepper, or course, by itself is usually used to refer to what you find next to salt shaker at restaurants (or used to, anyway, it seems these days that pepper is often not included in many kinds of restaurants).  Of course, not all peppers are equal and some peppers are sweet instead of hot.  So let’s look at some cool pepper types to see if we can’t help stimulate the creative faculties.

Big Bertha

Of pepper types, Big Bertha peppers are perhaps one of the favorite of gardeners throughout the country.  The reason for this popularity is that Big Berthas take really well to gardens and produce great results.  Big Berthas grow into big green thick walled peppers that add a glossy green to what could otherwise be drab gardens.

Big Berthas also work well as an ingredient for a Greek salad, adding a nice crunchy texture and a tart sweetness.  This texture is one of the things that makes Berthas favorite of chefs as well.

Sweet Banana Peppers

Not all sweet pepper types are bell peppers.  Sweet Banana peppers are also a gardener favorite even though they are slightly harder to grow than Big Berthas.  Sweet Banana peppers tend to add a slightly less vibrant shade of green (or orange) to the garden than the Big Berthas do but when you pluck them, you can use them as far more central characters in recipes.  The most common use for the wonderfully textured taste of sweet banana peppers is as a shell for other ingredients.  Chefs love to experiment with this kind of pepper and will stuff Sweet Banana Peppers with everything from cottage cheese to anchovies.  They are slightly less crunchy than Big Berthas as well, so they are a great idea for stuffed recipes.

Mexibell Pepper

The Mexibell Pepper is a mix between the Bell Pepper and the hot Fajita type peppers.  This tends to make it more difficult to grow—you will find fewer gardeners that are excited about growing it, but if you do find them, they can be quite pretty in a garden.  The Mexibell pepper, as you might have guessed, can be very spicy and makes for a great ingredient for the condiments section of a fajita recipe, adding a good strong punch to most any fajita.

Black Pearl

Although people usually think of peppers in terms of recipes to eat, peppers also are used just for their beauty as garden plants.  This is the case with the dark purple, almost black hues of the Black Pearl pepper plant.  Of pepper types that are purely ornamental, Black Pearl makes a great addition to any garden looking to add darker colors.  By having a large number of these as background for red roses you can create what some underground punk type gardeners call a Goth garden, a garden that looks like it has been taking tips from your daughter’s Goth wardrobe--red and black making for a really unusual, almost surreal appearance for a garden.


With so many possibilities, it is often difficult to decide on just one type of pepper.  Many southwestern gardeners find the best solution to this problem of peppers is just to give in to our love of peppers and plant a pepper garden.  The appearance of these gardens can be quite stunning and kitchens of these gardeners quite tasty, mixing both spicy and sweet in a most enticing manner.

With that, you should certainly have food for thought.