Favorite garden peppers for cooking?

I'm browsing vegetable seeds and had no idea there were so many peppers! What do you like to grow? How do you use them in your cooking?

I'm pretty new to gardening but I've managed to progress from basil and cilantro to cherry tomatoes. I'm ready for my next challenge! Some of the seed varieties I'm finding: candlelight pepper, garden sunshine pepper, fish pepper, and aurora pepper. Has anyone grown and/or cooked with these?

amanda russell


Valhalla September 18, 2017
I have found peppers really easy to grow from seed--and as you have found, you get the best varieties that way. (I start mine under grow lights in winter.) I grow two varieties of Japanese peppers, shisito and manganji, which are great just pan- fried but can also be tossed into any recipe calling for a green pepper. On a gochugaru-induced whim, I planted a much spicier Korean variety called Lady Choi. I think all those came from Kitazawa seeds. My favorite is a Tunisian hot pepper called baklouti from Baker Creek seeds, with which i have made harissa, but it can be used as any spicy chile would.
I don't bother trying to grow sweet peppers, as I find less flavor variation in the varieties, and my farmers' market has them piled high all summer and into fall. I do cook with sweet peppers often and broil and freeze them as well.
caninechef September 18, 2017
You might want to check if you can find varieties recommended for your area. Peppers can be finicky ( at least ones I am familiar with) about setting fruit depending on night time temperatures. Starting with plants from a reputable local nursery might be worthwhile.
BerryBaby September 17, 2017
I've grown Green Bell Peppers and Jalapeño. Both were quite easy and produced very well. I'm not familiar with the other ones you listed.
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