When I first started growing the Jalapeno pepper, I had no idea I had so many options.
I mean Jalapenos typically come in green or red in the grocery store.
You don’t have to limit yourself to that!
Not only was I surprised to discover the many shades (like purple!), I found different varieties with special characteristics. For example, some have a such as a shorter growth period and others have a hotter or lower heat level.
Below is a list of some intriguing Jalapeño varieties that you might want to add to your garden:
Purple Jalapeño Pepper
This is a personal favorite.
Purple Jalapeños grow on a beautiful plant that can produce almost black leaves (in full sun) and purple flowers.
The chillies start off green, then turn purple and end up red. You can eat them at any color stage.
Watch out! This pepper is twice as hot as a regular Jalapeño!
Mucho Nacho Jalapeño
The Mucho Nacho Jalapeño is a larger variety of jalapeno pepper as it grow up to 4 inches long.
You’ll find that these chillies tend to be longer and wider than standard Jalapeños, which makes them ideal for stuffing.
These peppers start off green and then turn red. I’ve found both colors to be extremely hot.
This is the Jalapeño pepper you want if you love heat.
Billy Biker Jalapeño
Another hot one, the Billy Biker Jalapeño backs up high heat with incredible Jalapeño flavor.
You can expect these chillies to grow up to 3 1/2 inches long, and they are extremely prolific.
Enjoy these peppers in both the green and red stage.
The TAM Jalapeño is the pepper you want if you just want the delicious Jalapeño flavor without the heat.
You can expect a mild taste that ranges from 1,000 to 3,500 SHU (Scoville Heat Units).
Eat them in the green or red stage when they are 3 inches to 4 inches long.
Yes, these Jalapeño peppers come in black!
The Black Jalapeño is another eye-catching variety that starts off green, changes to black and ultimately turns red at the end of its growth cycle.
These peppers have a high heat, grow up to 3 1/2 inches long and are very prolific.
The Jalaro Jalapeño just explodes with so much color that you can grow it for the chillies or use it as an ornamental feature.
This mild Jalapeño variety begins as a golden yellow, changes to orange and then ends up red.
Even more, this variety is resistant to six viruses that commonly affect pepper plants.
(Tip: If you aren’t growing this variety, here’s a guide that will help you manage pests and disease without chemicals.)
NuMex Pinata Jalapeño
If you love color, and I mean LOVE it, add the NuMex Pinata Jalapeño to your pepper garden!
Developed by New Mexico State University (NMSU), these chillies change from green, to bright yellow, to orange and ultimately red.
The NuMex Pinata has the average size and heat of a Jalapeño and makes a colorful salsa.
If you’re in an area that has a shorter growing season, add the Early Jalapeño to your grow list.
This Jalapeño grows to approximately 3 1/2 inches long and has a delicious, hot flavor that ranges anywhere between 4,000 to 6,000 SHU (Scoville Heat Units).
These peppers mature in approximately 60 days.
More About When To Harvest Jalapeno Peppers
When you eat your Jalapenos depends on your preference.
I’ve noticed that green Jalapenos tend to be hotter in the green stage, and the mature red peppers have a sweetness to them.
Some of these varieties display stretch marks, or corking, which lets you know they’re ready.
Personally, I recommend you pick jalapenos in various color stages and sizes to see what tastes the best to you.