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10 Different Types of Indian Chilli Powders

15 November 2023

In this article, we will take a closer look at the chilli powders made from different types of Indian chilli peppers. These powders are made from dried and ground peppers with no additional ingredients.

Chilli powders, and the whole chillies from which they are derived, are an essential component in Indian cuisine. The vibrant red hues of certain Indian dishes, as well as the aromas and intense flavours, are attributed to these spices.

Today, hundreds of chilli pepper varieties are grown in India, including the famous ghost pepper, Kashmiri, and guntur chilli. Each type of chilli has a unique flavour profile, colour, intensity, and level of heat. This means there is a perfect chilli for your food product, whatever it may be. There are also several options for new singular spices or spice blends using these Indian chilli peppers.

If you’re curious about how you can use these Indian chilli powders in your products, then contact Hela Spice to discover the possibilities.

Indian Chilli Powder, Chile Powder, and Chilli Powder

Before we begin, however, it’s important to define our spices. When we talk about Indian chilli powder, chile powder, and North American chilli powder, we are speaking about three different types of spices.

In North America, the name “chilli powder” typically refers to a spice blend, whereas “chile powder” is made solely from chile peppers. Most chilli powders found in North American supermarkets are a combination of ground chile, cumin, oregano, peppercorn, and salt.

Both Indian chilli powder and chile powder are singular spices, consisting of only one ingredient: dried, ground chilli/chile peppers. Since they can be made from any type of pepper, there is great variety in heat and flavour.

10 Types of Indian Chillies

1. Bhut jolokia: Northeast Indian

Bhut jolokia, more famously known as “ghost peppers,” are the planet’s hottest, spiciest, and fiercest chilli. In 2007, the Guinness Book of World Records officially certified ghost peppers as the hottest chilli in the world. This deep red pepper is consumed both as a spice and as a pickled food. In powder form, it turns into dark red, instantly adding a powerful kick to any food product.

2. Kashmiri chilli: Kashmir

Kashmiri chillies are among India’s most exported red chillies. However, they are also a favourite within Indian households. This type of chilli is incredibly popular because of its beautiful red colour, mild heated taste, and fragrant aroma.

During cooking, it imparts its bold colour, giving the food a rich and highly desirable appearance. Since it’s less spicy than other Indian chillies, it won’t overwhelm the dish with heat.

3. Guntur chilli: Andhra Pradesh

Guntur chilli powder is considered one of the best types of chilli powder available today. Although the colour can vary, it typically has a deep dark red or orange-red hue.

It lends an exceptionally fiery heat to recipes. Guntur chilli powder has a tangy flavour profile with fruit undertones. Andhra Pradesh in India is the largest exporter of Guntur chilli powder.

4. Dalle khursani: Sikkim

The name “dalle khursani” quite literally translates to “round chillies,” referring to their unique shape. They are, essentially, round balls of sweet fire that will leave your forehead sweating. Their heat is comparable to habanero chile peppers. Despite their fiery punch, these peppers have an unmistakable hint of sweet and fruity notes.

5. Kanthari chilli: Kerala

Originally from Thailand, kanthari chillies are one of the most preferred types of chilli powder in Indian and Southeast Asian cuisine. They’re commonly known as “bird’s eye pepper.”

Although small in size, these peppers are not lacking in heat. They’re almost as spicy as a habanero. In addition to powdered form, kanthari chillies are often used in pickles, chutneys, and condiments.

6. Jwala chilli: Gujarat

In Sanskrit, “jwala” means “an intense flame.” Aptly named, jwala chilli peppers have a medium heat (somewhere between a spicier serrano and a mild cayenne) and are at the upper end of what can be consumed raw. In fact, fresh or roasted jwala peppers are a staple in Indian curries. When powdered, jwala chilli adds a potent dash of flavour to recipes.

7. Khola chilli: Goa

The bright red khola chilli is the most famous chilli in Goa, India. It grows exclusively on the slopes of the Canacona district in South Goa and, consequently, is also known as the Canacona chilli. These chillies are medium pungent in taste and widely used for their attractive red colour.

8. Byadgi chilli: Karnataka

Byadgi chillies are famous for their colour and pungency. In Indian cuisine, they are used to impart an intense red colour to meat dishes. They have a mild heat, sitting on the lower end of extra-hot chilli varieties. Consequently, adding byadgi chilli powder is an effective way to add rich flavour and depth to a dish without introducing a staggering level of heat.

9. Ramnad mundu/Gundu: Tamil Nadu

Ramnad mundu chillies are small and round with dark red skin. Since the chillies lack a stem, they are easy to dry and powder. Consequently, ramnad mundu chillies are commonly used in both fine powder and flake form. They add a rich colour to food along with a mild heat, making them a popular choice in South Indian cuisine.

10. Hathei chilli: Ukhrul

The Ukhrul district of India hosts a famous chilli festival every year, and their local chilli is the star of the show. The hathei (or sirarakhong) chilli has a brilliant red colour and a distinctive taste, making it one of the most sought-after chillies in the area.

Custom Spice Blend and Food Manufacturing in North America

Indian chilli peppers offer exciting opportunities for North American food brands. These powerful, potent, and pungent powders can enhance the colour, flavour, aroma, and spice level of a wide variety of food products. Additionally, these peppers are an excellent foundation for new spice blends, as well as singular spices.

Hela Spice, a food manufacturing company, is ready to help you make the most of Indian chilli powders in your product line. Your next best-selling food product may just include chilli powder!

To learn more about food manufacturing from Hela Spice, visit our website or contact us here.

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