Spicy food is either something you love or absolutely loathe. Some people douse their plates in fiery hot sauce as a point of pride, while others cower at the mere thought of eating anything laced with chilli peppers. Fiery foods that use chilli peppers taste hot because they contain chemical molecules such as capsaicin, which are responsible for exciting the pain receptors on your tongue. That’s the burning sensation you feel when you munch down on a chilli, and has nothing to do with temperature!
The Scoville Heat Scale is a measurement of the pungent heat of chilli peppers and other spicy foods. More specifically, it measures the amount of capsaicin present in the chilli. The scale is represented as a spectrum of taste bud-tingling spiciness, and ranges from the mild-mannered Jalapeño pepper that has a Scoville Heat Unit (SHU) of 5000, to the infamous Carolina Reaper that holds the Guinness World Record for the world’s spiciest chilli pepper.
Want to find out exactly how hot the Carolina Reaper is? Keep reading! Below, we’ve gathered a list of the world’s spiciest chillies. Not for the faint of heart, we suggest attempting them at your own discretion.
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Straight from the depths of hell and tipping the Scoville Heat Scale at a soul-singing 2,2 million, the Carolina Reaper was officially honoured as the world’s hottest chilli pepper by the Guinness World Records in August 2013. Bred by cultivator Ed Currie, owner of the aptly named PuckerButt Pepper Company in Fort Mill, South Carolina, the pepper is a cross between a Red Savina Habanero and a ghost pepper. This hybrid chilli pepper comes from good genetic stock, as both of the ghost pepper and Red Savina Habanero are former world record holders.
Trinidad Moruga Scorpion
The Moruga Scorpion chilli is native to the lands of Moruga in Trinidad and Tobago. This is one of the newest and rarest chillies to be added to the formidable list, and just misses snatching the top position from the Carolina Reaper. It boasts a sweltering 2,009,231 Schoville Heat Units, with a demeanour that is characterised by a building heat, which experts describe as every bit as hot as a Carolina Reaper. The jury is still out on that one.
7 Pot Doughlah
Another chilli pepper hailing from the spicy isle of Trinidad! The 7 Pot Doulah is well known for being the spiciest chilli with the best flavour. Highly sought-after, this rare pepper has a deep purple to dark brown skin that has a dimpled surface. Its name comes from local folklore, which states that just one of these chilli peppers will impart enough spiciness and flavour for seven pots of stew.
7 Pot Primo
This formidable pepper is the demented brainchild of Troy Primeaux, nicknamed Primo. It is characterised by a pungent fruity/floral flavour that packs a taste bud-singeing punch, making its entry on the Scoville Heat Scale at nearly 1.5 million units.
Trinidad Scorpion “Butch T”
Hailing from Australia, the Trinidad Scorpion “Butch T” chilli pepper is a former Guinness World Record holder. It has a Scoville Heat score of just under 1.5 million, making the burn from this chilli unlike any other. It derives its name from its tip, which looks like a scorpion stinger, as well as its creator, Butch Taylor.
Are you brave enough to try ANY of these?