A rare super-hot, wicked habanero-like flavor…
Scoville heat units (SHU): 1,000,000 – 1,200,000
Jalapeño reference point: 125 to 480 times hotter
Products and seeds: Trinidad 7 Pot on Amazon
With its rounded shape, the Trinidad 7 Pot pepper (a.k.a. the 7 Pod pepper) may often look more like a sun-kissed habanero than a Scorpion pepper, but don’t let the shape fool you. The wrinkly, pocked skin tells the tale of a wolf in sheep’s clothing – there’s a heat here near the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion, making the 7 Pot pepper one of the hottest chilies in the world. Yet behind this heat is a delicious habanero-like fruity, nutty flavor that follows its Caribbean roots.
How hot are 7 Pot peppers?
The common red Trinidad 7 Pot pepper reaches extreme heights on the pepper scale, easily reaching 1,000,000 to 1,200,000 Scoville heat units. That puts it close to its cousin, the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion (though not quite as hot). This is extreme heat – 125 to 480 times hotter than our jalapeño reference point – so great care must be taken when handling 7 Pot peppers. Wear kitchen gloves and goggles if you handle these fresh.
There are many varieties and strains of the 7 Pot pepper available on the market, including the 7 Pot Jonah, 7 Pot Douglah, Chocolate 7 Pot, Yellow 7 Pot, 7 Pot Brain Strain, and more. While these varieties and strains will differ in color and looks, one thing will always be true: They are exceptionally hot, some even more so than the standard 7 Pot pepper.
What’s up with the name?
Some super-hot pepper names obviously play up their wicked heat in their name (Carolina Reaper, Scorpion peppers, ghost peppers). And, the 7 Pot pepper does so, too, though in a more functional way. Its name comes from the fact that just one of these peppers can heat seven pots of stew. It may not be a name with a lot of super-hot bravado, but it is certainly true.
What do Trinidad 7 Pot Peppers look like?
They often have a habanero-like shape, with their height and width nearly equal – two inches tall, one and a half to two inches wide. Though they can be found a little more elongated and they even can take on a scorpion-like tail.
The 7 Pot’s skin is the true give-away to the heat in this pepper. It’s sun-kissed the way ghost peppers and other super-hots are – wrinkled and pocked, like the sun threw all its heat into this chili pepper. They age from green to red, but as mentioned there are many varieties that have different color patterns as they mature.
What do they taste like?
Heat is the predominant flavor (no surprise), but if you’re an extreme eater, there’s actually a delicious Caribbean-like tropical flavor to the 7 Pot pepper. It’s fruity like a habanero pepper with a hint of nuttiness too. It’s fruitier than many other super-hots that still provide flavor (like ghost peppers), but the heat also comes on pretty fast with the 7 Pot, so the flavor is quickly competing with the wicked heat.
How can you use 7 Pot peppers?
The Trinidad 7 Pot pepper isn’t a commonly used chili, though it is growing in popularity among extreme eaters. Its fruity flavor is perfect for providing fire to tropical hot sauces, and it works well as a high heat source for soups, chilies, and stews. They can also be dried to make chili flakes or powder. Whatever the use case, remember to wear gloves and kitchen goggles. Chili burn from super-hot peppers is no laughing matter, know how to combat it just in case too.
Where can you buy Trinidad 7 Pot peppers?
They aren’t easy to find fresh. Like most super-hots, you won’t find them in most big-box super markets, and even farmer’s markets where other super-hots are sold, you won’t often find the 7 Pot pepper. If you want to grow them yourself, Trinidad 7 Pot pepper seeds are easily sourced online (though do the research on what you buy as there are many varieties). You can also find 7 Pot chili flakes and powders online with minimal searching.
While the Trinidad 7 Pot pepper may not have the cache of the ghost pepper or scorpion peppers, it’s still one of the hottest peppers in the world with a surprising amount of flavor. If you’re one for extreme-heat cooking and love tropical flavors, it’s worth the search.