Spiciest Peppers in the World

Spiciest Peppers in the World

Spiciest Peppers in the World

No doubt, there are thousands of spicy peppers across the planet.  New peppers are created or discovered every year. At Hot Monkey Nuts, we use some of the World’s Spiciest Peppers. You can find the hottest chili peppers in our 3 hottest flavors:  Curry Up! I’m on Fire has the Ghost Pepper, the Hot-Winged Reaper has Carolina Reaper pepper, and the Black Widow’s Bite has 8 peppers, including the Ghost pepper, Carolina Reaper pepper, and the Trinidad Scorpion pepper. The INSANE heat level of our Black Widow’s Bite comes from using the world’s hottest peppers.    

If you are new to the chili universe, then this article will introduce you to the 4 hottest peppers on the planet.  First, let’s discuss how the spiciness of peppers is measured using the Scoville scale. 

Scoville Heat Unit

Wondering what’s the most important distinction between peppers besides flavor? Of course, that’s none other than heat. When you eat spicy peppers, you’re likely to experience that sensation of heat, that excruciating burn that makes you question why you bit into that pepper in the first place. Is that Nirvana just beyond the horizon?  That burning sensation in your mouth is due to the chemical capsaicin – the more capsaicin, the spicier or hotter the pepper. 

We use the Scoville Heat Unit (SHU) to gauge or measure how hot a chili pepper is. It measures the concentration of capsaicinoids, of which, capsaicin is the predominant component.  An American pharmacist named Wilbur Scoville introduced this method back in 1912. An exact weight of dried pepper gets dissolved in alcohol to extract the heat components (capsaicinoids), then it is diluted in a sugar water solution.  Decreasing concentrations are given to a panel of trained testers until a majority (at least 3) can no longer detect the heat in the dilution.  The heat level is based on this dilution, rated in multiples of 100 SHU.  For example, Sweet Peppers rate a 0 SHU, while Carolina Reaper can rate up to 2,200,000 SHU.  

4 Spiciest Peppers You Need To Know

#1 Carolina Reaper

The Carolina Reaper, without any doubt, is on top of the list. The Carolina Reaper ranges from 1,400,000 to a staggering 2,200,000 SHU on the scale. It has been the hottest pepper in the world since it was officially certified by the Guinness Book of World Records on August 11, 2017 with an SHU of 1,641,183.  This was an average of the tested batch with the hottest individual pepper measuring at 2.2 million SHU.  Now that’s HOT!

The Carolina Reaper was crossbred between a La Soufriere pepper from the island of Saint Vincent and a Naga Viper pepper from Pakistan in Rock Hill, South Carolina by “Smokin” Ed Currie.  The pepper ranges in size from 1 to 2 inches wide (2.5 – 5 cm) and 2 to 3 inches (5 – 7.6cm) long.  They mature to a vibrant red color and the skin has a bumpy texture.

Upon first bite, the taste is described as having a fruity taste, which quickly descends into a mouth of horrors described as “molten lava”.    It’s name “Reaper” comes from the shape of its tail as it resembles the scythe famously carried by the Grim Reaper. This is exactly why we have included the Carolina Reaper pepper in our Hot-Winged Reaper and our Black Widow’s Bite flavors.  The sweet flavor and intense heat this pepper provides is  otherworldly.  So, let’s kick up those endorphins and bite into a Carolina Reaper pepper for a journey you won’t soon forget.

#2 Trinidad Moruga Scorpion “Butch T”

Second on the spiciest pepper’s list is the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion.  It was cultivated by Wahid Ogeer of Trinidad and was named after the central south coast village of Moruga.  In 2012, New Mexico State University's Chile Pepper Institute identified the Trinidad Moruga scorpion as the hottest chili at that time, with heat of 1.2 million Scoville heat units but as we know was overtaken by the Carolina Reaper.  Besides the heat, the Trinidad Scorpion has a tender fruit-like flavor, which makes it a sweet and hot combination. The Scorpion pepper is in our Black Widow’s Bite flavored Hot Monkey Nuts.  

#3 7 Pot Douglah

The 7 Pot Douglah is also known as Chocolate 7 Pot due to the chocolate color of its skin.  Its name comes from the Trinidad word douglah which means a person of mixed race, from both African and Indian descent.  Its one of the rarest and hottest of the 7 pod strains.  Its currently the third hottest pepper in the world behind The Carolina Reaper and the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion with an SHU between 923,889 – 1,853,986. It matures to a chocolatey brown hue instead of the typical shock red, with a flavor that’s not only fruity sweet, but also a bit nutty. It’s appearance is habanero-like, approximately two inches long, wrinkled, and pocked.

#4 Ghost Pepper

The Ghost pepper, also known as bhut jolokia is a hybrid chili pepper cultivated in Northeast India. It’s a hybrid of Capsicum chinense and Capsicum frutescens.  It measures 1,041,427 SHU on the SHU scale. It was at the top of the list back in 2007 as declared by the Guinness Book of World Records. However, it was surpassed by the Carolina Reaper. As intense heat can sneak up on you, this is where the Ghost pepper gets its name. The Ghost pepper comes in a wide array of colors, such as orange, chocolate, red, and yellow. Ripe peppers measure 60 to 85 mm (2.4 to 3.3 in) in length and 25 to 30 mm (1.0 to 1.2 in).  Ghost pepper pods are unique among peppers because of their characteristic shape and very thin skin. However, the red fruit variety has two different types: the rough, dented fruit and the smooth fruit.  Ghost peppers are used as a food and a spice. It is used in both fresh and dried forms to "heat up" curries, pickles and chutneys. It is popularly used in combination with pork or dried or fermented fish. In northeastern India, the peppers are smeared on fences or incorporated in smoke bombs as a safety precaution to keep wild elephants at a distance. The pepper's intense heat makes it a fixture in competitive chili-pepper eating. Unlike most peppers, ghost peppers produce capsaicin in vesicles found in both the placenta around the seeds and throughout the fruit, rather than just in the placenta.  

We’ve included the Ghost pepper in our Curry Up! I’m on Fire flavor. With Garam Masala, Buttermilk, Tomatoes, and Ghost pepper, you’ll find yourself transported to a spice-filled adventure. 

So now you know about the 4 spiciest peppers, go grab an ULTIMATE NUT SACK of Hot Monkey Nuts and see if you can challenge yourself- trying our 9 flavors in order from our Mild flavor to our INSANE level!  It takes guts, but we’re pretty sure you’ll enjoy our nuts!


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