Chomping on some charred shishito peppers is a quick and easy way to toss in some nutrients when you’re tight on time. This smoky appetizer or snack can be made in 10 minutes or less! Make the perfect healthy side dish or quick bite!
Where to Buy Shishito Peppers
Shishito peppers are mild Japanese peppers that are pretty fun to eat because it’s almost like playing a little roulette. They say that 1 in 10 peppers is actually spicy, so may the luck be ever in your favor!
You can find this twisted and wrinkly vegetable at Asian markets and I’ve been told they’re now pretty accessible at Trader Joe’s and even some Safeways!
Key Cooking Tips for the BEST Charred Shishito Peppers
- Get Blistered, Not Soggy Peppers: Because we’re looking to quickly get some color on them, the peppers need to be as dry as possible. Pat them down well to avoid steaming your vegetable.
- Avoid Pepper Explosions: These peppers will be cooked at high heat. If the steam in the pepper has nowhere to go, you’ll soon start hearing loud popping noises in your pan! To avoid this, take a fork and puncture a few holes in the peppers, otherwise, you’ll be in for a loud surprise!
- Don’t Be a Rookie: Patience is key here. Once you way those peppers down on the skillet, allow them to cook for a minute or two before flipping or stirring. If you move them too quickly, they’ll never develop the charred shishito peppers you’re going for.
Timing for Oil is Important
To get beautifully blistered shishito peppers easily, it’s best to dry roast the peppers in a skillet, oven on broil, or grill. I found that many recipes call for the peppers to be tossed in oil prior to cooking. You’re missing some great opportunities by waiting to toss them in oil afterward instead!
- Smoky Flavor, Not Kitchen: To get charred shishito peppers, they need to be cooked at high heat. Using oils such as olive or coconut oil have low smoke points. This will cause the oils to break down and quickly smoke up your kitchen. If you add oil before and after cooking, you’ll end up with a greasy veggie, which no one likes! But why would you add oil after cooking? Keep reading 😉
- Boost Your Flavors: Another great reason to add oil after the peppers are cooked is because the oil can add an additional layer of flavor. Toss in olive oil, for example, and you now have a delicate flavor of fruitiness too!
- Make the Good Stuff Stick: The last reason is plain and simple. Any additional seasonings, such as salt, furikake, paprika, or any of your other favorite powdered seasoning will stick much easier!
What to Serve with Blistered Shishito Peppers
- Air Fryer Miso Salmon
- Kalbi Short Ribs
- Eggplant Tofu
- Crispy Sweet & Spicy Chicken Wings
- Grilled Lemongrass Chicken
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Charred Shishito Peppers
- 8 oz shishito peppers washed & pat dry
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Heat a cast iron or large skillet on medium-high heat.
- In the meantime, prepare shishito peppers by piercing a few holes in the peppers using a fork, knife, or toothpick. This will allow the steam to release and avoid popping while cooking.
- Add shishito peppers to the dry pan, working in batches if needed to avoid overcrowding. Allow the peppers to cook for about a minute to char before flipping them. Continue to cook and flip the peppers until they’ve been evenly charred.
- Transfer the peppers to a bowl, drizzle on the olive oil, and season with salt. Optional: You can add another layer of flavor by adding either freshly squeezed lemon, furikake, togarashi, or smoked paprika. Serve and enjoy!
- Cast Iron / Skillet: Using a cast iron is ideal since it holds heat well and tends to be easier to create a char, however, a large pan will work as well.
- Shishito Peppers: Make sure the peppers are dried very well before adding them to the pan, otherwise, they'll end up steaming instead of charring while cooking.
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