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Scotch bonnet peppers are popular in most Caribbean cuisines, although they are difficult to locate. Unless you live in a subtropical region or a city with a large Caribbean population, obtaining scotch bonnet peppers would be challenging.

So what if you come upon an excellent dish that asks for scotch bonnet pepper but you don’t have any on hand? The easiest solution is to utilize other suitable scotch bonnet pepper replacements.

Most supermarkets and grocery shops sell habanero chili pepper, tabasco sauce, jalapeno chili pepper, piri piri sauce, paprika, sriracha, thai red chili paste, chili pepper, and red cayenne pepper powder as alternatives for scotch bonnet pepper.

Let’s quickly learn more about these peppers and discover how they may be used in lieu of scotch bonnet pepper in your recipes!

What Is Scotch Bonnet Pepper?

Scotch bonnet pepper, commonly known as Caribbean red pepper, is a fiery and acidic pepper called after the tam o’ shanter hat. It is one of the hottest peppers in the planet.

It is mostly utilized in the Caribbean and West Africa. Scoville units range from 100,000 to 300,000 for the scotch bonnet.

It is considered highly spicy when compared to jalapeño peppers, which have a Scoville rating of around 2,500-8,000 Scoville units. As a result, it is best to eat it in moderation.

Best Scotch Bonnet Pepper Substitutes

This is a list of various peppers that may be substituted for scotch bonnet peppers.

1. Habanero Chili Pepper

Because of its strong heat level, the habanero pepper is the greatest alternative for scotch bonnet peppers.

When replacing habanero for scotch bonnet peppers, use a 1:1 ratio since their heating impact is almost identical.

The advantage of adopting habanero as a replacement is that, unlike scorch peppers, habanero peppers are simpler to locate in supermarket shops.

Although if habanero equals the hotness of scorch bonnet peppers, it lacks the fruity flavor of scorch bonnet, thus the overall flavor of your food may vary.

2. Red Cayenne Pepper Powder

Most individuals keep a container of cayenne pepper powder in their kitchen cupboards since it is a favorite culinary condiment.

This pepper is one of the best scotch bonnet pepper alternatives since it matches the intensity of the original in both taste and flavor.

It is recommended that you use around a teaspoon in your food and keep adding the same quantity until you get the desired degree of spice in your cuisine.

It is important to note that if you add powdered cayenne to your food, there will be no remnants of fresh chile in the container, but since the spice level is high enough, no one will notice.

3. Chili Pepper

Most people would assume that this pepper is just a blend of ground chili peppers that has been packaged, but this is not the case.

Chili pepper is a well crafted spice combination that gives your meal a richer and more distinct flavor. Also, this pepper is often confused with Chili powder.

Chile powder is just ground spicy peppers that may be used in place of scotch bonnet pepper, however due to its higher heat intensity than scotch bonnet, you need use more of it in your recipes.

Chili powders are also available in mild, medium, and spicy types, allowing you to choose the amount that best matches your cuisine.

4. Jalapeno Chili Pepper

This pepper is appropriate for usage if you want peppers with the same texture and flavor as chili peppers but without the intensity of scotch bonnet pepper.

A significant improvement is that this pepper is now practically universally accessible. Although though they are not as fruity and fiery as scotch bonnet peppers, jalapenos have delicious tastes.

When replacing jalapenos for scotch bonnet peppers in a dish, use a 3:1 (jalapeno: scotch bonnet) ratio, and if you still want additional heat, add your preferred quantity of chili pepper.

5. Tabasco Sauce

Tabasco sauce is created by combining tabasco pepper, vinegar, and salt. It is an extremely spicy sauce with a heat comparable to the scotch bonnet pepper.

Tabasco sauce should be a fantastic option if you want a strong amount of heat and thickness in your dish.

When adding tabasco to your food, use a teaspoon at a time until you get the appropriate heat level. It is usually preferable to have less heat in your dish rather than a mouth-burning recipe.

6. Piri Piri Sauce

This sauce is supposed to have originated in Portugal centuries ago. Portuguese merchants go to other countries to bring back the spicy spices needed to manufacture the Piri Piri sauce, which is today famous for its chicken peri Piri sauce.

This sauce comprises vinegar, lemon, garlic, oil, and bay, as well as herbal tastes such as tarragon and citrussy.

Piri Piri is a wonderful scotch bonnet pepper substitute since it has a delicious flavor.

7. Thai Red Chili Paste

Thai red chili paste is a blend of Thai spices and red chilies that may be used to flavor soups, stir-fries, and a variety of other meals.

Because of its strong aroma and adaptability, it is an excellent alternative for scotch bonnet pepper.

When using this paste as a replacement, keep in mind that it includes seafood extract, which is also found in fish sauce and shrimp paste. It may not be acceptable for vegetarians and dietarians when added.

8. Paprika

This pepper has all of the tastes of a scotch bonnet pepper but none of the scorching spiciness. Although if paprika is created from chili peppers, it has little heat when compared to chili powders.

In meals where simply flavor and not heat are desired, paprika would be an excellent alternative for scotch bonnet pepper.

Another advantage of utilizing paprika is that it is available in a variety of forms such as smoked, rubs, marinades, and sauces when an earthy and deep taste is desired.

9. Sriracha

Since it is created from red jalapeño peppers, Sriracha is not as fiery as Tabasco or Piri Piri sauce. It is a vinegar, chile, and salt combination that may offer a little kick to practically any cuisine.

The wonderful thing about this pepper is that it is not spicy and will not transform your cuisine into a scorching catastrophe if you add too much of it to your plate.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are There Different Scotch Bonnet Pepper Varieties?

Tobago, Grenada, chocolate, pink, red, sweet cachucha, real Jamaican, Tobago orange, and Tobago sweet are all scotch bonnet pepper varietals.

Are Habaneros and Scotch Bonnet Pepper the Same?

Even though they have the same heat levels, these chilies are not the same; their tastes are distinct.

Although both habaneros and scotch bonnet peppers are sweet and delicious, habaneros have a little harshness to them, whilst scotch bonnet peppers do not.

Related Articles:

  • Scotch Bonnet vs. Carolina Reaper
  • Ghost Pepper vs. Scotch Bonnet
  • Can Scotch Bonnet Peppers Be Frozen?


What is scotch bonnet pepper compared to?

Scotch bonnet peppers are 12 to 140 times hotter than jalapeos. It’s also 2 to 12 times hotter than the cayenne pepper in your spice cabinet. That’s a big increase in heat. Of course, there are more hotter chiles on the Scoville scale than the scotch bonnet.

What is equivalent to scotch bonnet pepper powder?

Habanero chilies.

The habanero pepper is the greatest scotch bonnet alternative. They are not only extremely comparable to scotch bonnets in taste and heat intensity, but they are also considerably simpler to get. Habanero peppers may be substituted 1:1.

What can I use instead of scotch bonnet in jerk?

If you can’t get scotch bonnet peppers, habanero peppers are your next best option. These don’t taste precisely the same, but they’ll do in a hurry.

What is the closest thing to a Scotch bonnet pepper?

Jalapeo peppers. Scotch bonnet peppers are often substituted with jalapeo peppers. In terms of heat, jalapeos normally range between 2,500 to 8,000 on the Scoville scale (compared to 100,000 – 350,000 for scotch bonnets).

What is Scotch bonnet pepper called in America?

Scotch bonnet (also known as Bonney peppers or Caribbean red peppers) is a kind of chili pepper named after the Scottish tam o’ shanter hat.

What flavor is scotch bonnet pepper?

What Do You Think It Tastes Like? Scotch bonnets are quite hot peppers, yet they may have an almost sweet, faintly fruity flavor below the spiciness. This might vary from place to region since it is dependent on the soil conditions in which they are cultivated.

What flavor is scotch bonnet vs habanero?

These chilis have varying degrees of heat, but their flavors are also distinct. Habaneros have a somewhat sweet and fruity flavor that is slightly bitter. Scotch Bonnets are similarly sweet and delicious, but not bitter. Individuals who are inexperienced with the various chili heat levels and tastes will detect no change.

Is scotch bonnet the same as Carolina Reaper?

The Carolina Reaper packs roughly a 15th of the punch of a scotch bonnet pepper, yet it burns about 15 times as hot as a scotch bonnet pepper. Jalapenos, a mild pepper, provide around 1 teaspoon of heat.

What are the variations of scotch bonnet?

Scotch Bonnet Peppers of Many Varieties

Bahama Mom. A Bahamian. The Jamaican Spicy. The Chinese Capsicum.

What is hotter habanero or scotch bonnet?

Scoville Heat units are used to quantify the heat of peppers using the Scoville Scale (SHU). It is a function of capsaicin, the major phytochemical in peppers that gives them their heat. The habanero chili pepper has a SHU of 260,000, but the Scotch bonnet pepper has a SHU of 445,000.

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