Shishito peppers are the mildly spicy, East Asian variation of Capsicum annuum. The same species the well beloved chili peppers come from. But shishito peppers’ health benefits are a bit different than chilis’. Not to mention its look and taste.
Shishito peppers are wrinkly. Sort of resembling groundcherries. This is where it got its nickname in Korea, kkwari-gochu, or “groundcherry pepper”. They are about the length of a finger, slim, and thin-walled. Their flavor is mildly spicy, sweet, and slightly smoky.
Fun fact: most peppers are not really hot, but one in ten shishito peppers will be HOT.
Shishito Peppers Health Benefits
Shishito peppers are rich in antioxidants. Which if you don’t know, antioxidants play one of the most vital parts in your body. Fending off free radicals.
Free radicals are basically unstable atoms that got “leaked” from different bodily processes. They roam the body free, looking for something to latch onto. And once they do, they develop into various diseases.
Alzheimer’s, cardiovascular disease, cataracts, cancer, and many more have been correlated to free radicals.
Antioxidants play the role of the protector, abolishing free radicals. If you’re looking for another antioxidant-rich food, check out our article about avocado leaves.
One of shishito peppers’ health benefits comes from their high fiber content. Fiber makes you feel fuller for longer and represses cravings. So if you’re struggling with weight loss, an addition of shishito to your meals could be a good move.
On the topic of losing weight, shishito peppers also help with regularity and improving, let’s say, your bowel movements’ quality and frequency. This benefit also comes from shishito pepper’s fiber content.
The antioxidants we mentioned in the disease section also play a role in preventing heart disease. And in addition to that, shishito peppers contain vitamin C, which studies show improves heart health in multiple different ways.
Fun fact: vitamin C is also an antioxidant.
Hemorrhoids are caused because of a fiber deficiency. Improve your vitamin intake with shishito peppers and decrease the chances of hemorrhoids. Simple as that.
Stronger Immune System
Other than containing antioxidants and vitamin C, shishito peppers also have vitamin B6, vitamin A, and vitamin E. Each vitamin helps and strengthens your immune system, along with the antioxidants fighting free radicals, shishito peppers make for a great immune booster.
Better Eye Health
As is mentioned in the previous section, shishito peppers contain vitamin A. The most important vitamin for eye health. It reduces the risk of macular degeneration and vision loss. It also soothes existing eye inflammation and prevents a non-existing one.
Other than the antioxidants that can fight and prevent acne (acne is also a result of free radicals) and the multiple vitamins that can nourish your skin. Shishito peppers also contain phytonutrients that can help skin infections, acne, blemishes, and other skin conditions.
Better Oral Health
Yes, shishito peppers’ health benefits also include oral health. As if it wasn’t versatile enough already. They contain calcium, a mineral that plays an essential role in our oral health. Gums and teeth both benefit and actually need calcium.
If you didn’t know your bones need calcium to stay healthy by now, now you know. It’s one of the most important things for healthy bones. So the addition of calcium coming from shishito peppers is definitely a benefit.
Shishito Peppers Nutrition (100g)
- Calories – 20
- Total Fat – 0g
- Sodium – 3mg
- Carbohydrates – 5g
- Sugar – 2g
- Fiber – 2g
- Protein – 1g
Vitamins: A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B9, C, E, K, Biotin.
Minerals: Calcium, Sodium, Potassium, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Zinc, Copper, Iron, Manganese, Selenium, Molybdenum, Chromium.
Others: Phytonutrients, Dietary Fiber, Protein, Carbohydrates.
Are Shishito Peppers Hot
Shishito peppers are only mildly hot. They range from 250 to 1,000 on the Scoville scale, which puts them at least 2,000 below Jalapeno’s 2,500 to 8,000. If you can take Jalapeno, you’ll be ok.
Padron Peppers vs Shishito Peppers
Shishito peppers and Padron peppers are often confused. But while they are similar in looks and come from the same family (Capsicum annuum). They are not the same.
Shishito peppers come from East Asia, while Padron comes from Spain. Shishitos are relatively thinner and slightly less spicy, 250-1,000 Scovilles as opposed to Padron’s 500-2,500.
Both are great peppers with palatable spiciness and incredible health benefits, so don’t be afraid to try both!
So you’ve seen shishito peppers’ health benefits, are you going to get some? We love using them for gazpacho, salsa, roasted, sauteed, and even fresh. The mild spiciness really makes them versatile and palatable in almost every dish. And their health benefits are a huge bonus.
Let us know what you’re gonna make!