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31 Amazing Pepper Plants (w/Pictures)

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The diversity of different pepper varieties is staggering. From sweet to spicy, small to large, and virtually any color (except blue).

Since we are passionate about peppers, we decided to showcase a mind-blowing assortment of different types of pepper plants, along with pictures of each. For those of you who like to grow peppers, you can likely find them on one of our favorite pepper seed sellers.

1. Paradeisfruchtiger

Paradeisfruchtiger Gelber pepper
Paradeisfruchtiger gelber pepper.

The paradeisfruchtiger gelber is a pumpkin-shaped sweet pepper that ripens from green to orange. These are perfect for October meals, and can even be carved into chili Jack-o-lanterns!

2. MOA Scotch Bonnet

MOA Scotch bonnet pepper
MOA Scotch bonnet pepper.

The MOA scotch bonnet is one of my personal favorite pepper varieties. This hot variety from the Caribbean has a distinct lemony flavor and is perfect for making homemade hot sauce.

3. Black Pearl

Black pearl pepper plant with ripe pods
Black pearl pepper plant.

Named for its small, berry-shaped, black fruits, the black pearl variety is an ornamental beauty. The dark peppers ripen to a rich red, adding amazing contrast against the jet-black foliage.

4. Joe’s Long Cayenne

Joes Long Cayenne pepper ripe
Joe’s long cayenne pepper.

Even within the sub-category of cayenne peppers, there is tons of diversity! The “Joe’s long” cayenne grows to an average length of 12″ and has a medium heat level. These are perfect for making Louisiana style hot sauce.

5. Mustard Habanero

Habanero Mustard pepper
Mustard habanero pepper.

Again, there isn’t just one type of habanero. The “mustard” habanero is extra-large, and has lots of folds and creases. They are also extra-hot compared to the habaneros you’ll find at the grocery store šŸ„µ.

6. MattapeƱo

MattapeƱo pepper plant with white pods
MattapeƱo peppers on plant.

The MattapeƱo has quickly become a legend in the pepper growing community. Discovered in a large commercial greenhouse setting, this variegated jalapeƱo variety is basically a work of art.

7. Chinese 5 Color Pepper

Chinese 5 color pepper plant with purple, yellow and red fruits
Chinese 5 color pepper plant.

Chinese 5 color peppers ripen through 5 different color stages. Yellows, whites, purples, oranges and reds simultaneously display on the plants, making for quite a show in the garden.

8. Hatch Green Chile

NuMex Heritage 6-4 hatch green chiles.
Hatch green chiles.

The Hatch chile is a cultural phenomenon in New Mexico, but I think they should be loved worldwide. These huge, productive chile plants are rock stars in the garden, especially in dry climates. Plus, the peppers are delicious when roasted and peeled.

9. Khang Starr Lemon Starrburst

KSLS peppers

Khang Starr is a popular YouTuber who crossbreeds peppers to create new varieties. The Lemon Starrburst is one such creation, and it is both beautiful and delicious.

10. Candy Cane

Candy cane pepper closeup
Candy cane pepper with stripes.

The candy cane pepper is a newer hybrid variety that has striped skin. The foliage is also variegated (with green and white splotches). Eventually, these sweet peppers ripen to a solid red color.

11. Purple Reaper

Purple Reaper Peppers with Foliage
Purple reaper peppers with dark foliage.

The infamous Carolina reaper has a purple cousin. This entire plant is dark, from the jet black leaves to the deep purple unripe fruits. And yes, they’re seriously spicy!

12. Aji Amarillo

Aji amarillo pepper harvest
Aji amarillo peppers.

The aji amarillo (AKA yellow chili) is a bright and colorful pepper hailing from Peru. They are considered an essential kitchen ingredient in Peruvian cuisine, and are commonly used to make a spicy paste. The fruity flavor is common amongst C. baccatum species peppers.

13. Jimmy Nardello

Jimmy Nardello peppers in hand
Jimmy nardello sweet peppers.

The Jimmy nardello pepper is a long, sweet variety with origins in Italy. While moving to the United States, the Nardiello family brought seeds for this heirloom with them. The peppers are sweet and delicious, great for frying or eating fresh in salads.

14. Sugar Rush Stripey

Sugar Rush Stripey peppers
Sugar rush stripey peppers.

Perhaps the most amazing pepper on this list, the sugar rush stripey is a true beauty. These C. baccatum chilies ripen with orange and deep red streaks of color. Learn more about the stripey here.

15. Olive Nagabrains

Ripe Olive Nagabrans Pepper
Olive nagabrains pepper.

If you’re looking for a true oddity, this is it. The “olive nagabrains” was a one-off crossbreed that we grew from an independent plant breeder. The plant has jet black foliage, with wrinkly fruits that ripen to a gorgeous olive color.

16. Aji Fantasy

Aji fantasy white peppers ripe in hand
Aji fantasy white peppers.

Another C. baccatum variety with a bizarre, crown-like shape, the aji fantasy pepper is a marvel. These medium-spicy peppers are crunchy and fruity, and are incredibly productive in the garden.

17. Buena Mulata

Buena Mulata pods up close on plant
Buena mulata peppers.

One of the many purple peppers within the C. annuum species, the buena mulata is essentially a violet cayenne pepper. These plants are pretty to look at, but fell short on flavor (in our opinion). Still gorgeous!

18. Purple Beauty Bell Pepper

Purple beauty bell pepper sliced inside
Purple beauty bell pepper.

The purple beauty pepper is a gorgeous lilac-colored variant of the bell pepper. These violet peppers grow on compact plants and can be harvested while purple, or after they have ripened to ruby red.

19. Jay’s Peach Ghost Scorpion

Jay's Peach Ghost Scorpion Peppers
Jays’ peach ghost scorpion peppers.

One of the most eccentric superhots we have grown, the Jay’s peach ghost scorpion is sight to behold. With a wrinkly texture and a spiked tail, these peppers look wicked (and they are fiercely spicy).

20. Bell Peppers

Green and red bell peppers
Red bell peppers.

While we are all familiar with them at supermarkets, bell peppers are impressive peppers. With the heaviest weighing well over a pound, these veggies are amazing to watch grow in the garden.

21. Brazilian Starfish

Ripe Brazilian Starfish Pepper
Brazilian starfish.

The Brazilian starfish pepper has a gorgeous shape, somewhat like a starfish (or perhaps an alien spaceship?). Though the flavor is lackluster, they were worth growing for their appearance alone!

22. Snow White SLP

Snow White SLP pepper
Snow white SLP peppers.

The snow white SLP pepper is a creation from Semillas la Palma. These small (~1 inch) peppers pack a powerful punch of heat and are filled with flowery, pungent flavor.

23. 7 Pot Primo Orange

7 pot primo orange peppers
7 pot primo orange peppers.

Though I still believe these are more yellow than orange, the 7 pot primo orange variety is one of my all-time favorite hot peppers. This superhot has a slightly floral and lemon-like flavor, and packs impressive heat – perfect for hot sauce making!

24. Fish Pepper

Fish Pepper
Fish pepper.

One of our very first ornamentals, the fish pepper is an heirloom saved by Horace Pippin. This rare seed collector helped save us many beautiful varieties that are still popular to this day! The fish pepper puts on a gorgeous display of stripes and colors, along with variegated foliage.

25. Aji Charapita

Ripe Aji Charapita Peppers with Plant
Ripe aji charapita peppers.

Only the size of a pea, the aji charapita looks innocent. However, these tiny berries pack a punch! They are commonly used in Peru as an addition to soups and other meals.

26. Trinidad Moruga Scorpion

Trinidad Moruga Scorpion Peppers
Trinidad moruga scorpion peppers.

Once considered the world’s hottest pepper, the Trinidad moruga scorpion is a landrace pepper variety from Trinidad and Tobago. The wrinkly skin and evil-looking stingers are a hint at the power of these chilies.

27. Thay Pumpkin Yellow

Thay pumpkin yellow peppers
Thay pumpkin yellow peppers.

The thay pumpkin yellow resembles a miniature pumpkin. Perfect for carving in October, these adorable peppers are both ornamental and practical. They have medium heat level, and a sweet flavor similar to a yellow bell.

28. Death Spiral

Death spiral pepper on plant
Death spiral pepper.

The names of newer pepper varieties seem to be getting more and more sinister. “Death spiral” gives you a good idea of how you might feel if you were to eat one of these peppers whole.

29. Pimenta Da Neyde

Pimenta da Neyde peppers
Pimenta da neyde peppers.

The pimenta da neyde is a miracle pepper, accepted as one of the world’s natural crosses between the C. annuum and C. chinense species. These deep purple (basically black) peppers are rich in anthocyanins, hence their violet appearance.

30. Black Panther Orange

Black Panther Orange peppers on plant
Black panther orange peppers.

With the help of the pimenta da neyde, many new crossbreeds have been created. One of them is the black panther pepper, with dark leaves and peppers that ripen from black to orange.

31. Lesya

This heart-shaped sweet pepper is similar in flavor to bell peppers. In my opinion, there are few peppers more gorgeous than the lesya!

Lesya pepper
Lesya pepper (right) and biquinho pepper (left).

I hope you enjoyed this list of 31 incredible pepper varieties. There are countless more, and you can browse some more of the peppers we have grown here.

Calvin Thumbnail


One of the original Pepper Geeks! When Calvin isn’t gardening or learning more about peppers and botany, he might be traveling new places or playing some music.

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  1. I love reading you and your wife’s articles and watching your videos and have learned quite a bit from y’all! This is our second year growing from seed and absolutely love it,there is no better feeling in my opinion then starting from seed and watching them grow and mature to harvest time when you’re able to enjoy the fruits of your labor! With that being said I was wondering if you and your wife would share with my wife and I a few of your Olive NagaBrain seeds?

  2. Chili’s, chili peppers, dried chilies, smoke chilies, and powder chilies ect. They are as complicated as wines, and chainsaw blades to figure out, and as dangerous when you get the heat going.
    Thanks for sharing pictures and descriptions.

  3. You guys!! You always make me want and buy more than I have space for, or can possibly consume. My husband loves heat in peppers, so most of our meals have some heat in them (even eggs for breakfast). However, my husband did have a learning experience: he made poppers out of Ghost Peppers. He passed out, eyes rolled back. Now, he’s a little more cautious. We have a neighbor who loves the heat as well. There’s a friendly competition among us in our growing of peppers.
    This offering above will enrich our experiment in pepper growing.

  4. This list is amazing and very informative. Introducing us to many varieties we may have never seen or even heard of.
    Thank you so much for putting this together!

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