You know those little canned green chiles that you can use in scrambled eggs, tacos, nachos, chili, and so much more? They are one of my favorites because they are easy to keep on hand and can be tossed in oh so many foods to add something special. Unfortunately those little wonders contain 60 mg of sodium per tablespoon. And when you use them with the frequency (and quantities) that I do, they add up really fast.
So to get the same flavor without all the sodium, I roast them myself. I roast 6-8 peppers at a time, chop them, and freeze them in small containers. They are pretty easy to make ahead and freezing them means that I can pull them out any time to toss in whatever I’m concocting. I use these in many recipes (including an amazing chicken recipe that will go up soon), so I wanted to share my process from the get-go. They have a great complex flavor (more than the raw green chile), which is something that we are always after in low sodium cuisine.
So how do you roast your own green chiles? You start by washing and drying your peppers, and placing them on a hot grill. For the purpose of this post, I am using Anaheim green chiles, but you can roast any kind of pepper using the same technique. Need fire roasted red peppers? Poblanos? Jalapenos? Use the same process described here.
Roast the peppers on medium high until the peppers are blackened, rotating as necessary.
You can also roast peppers in your oven. To do so, place them on an oven-safe pan several inches under a broiler set to high for about 5-10 minutes per side, or until nicely blackened.
The peppers will become a bit darker, and a tiny bit transparent. The skin will begin to peel away. When this happens, they are ready to take off the grill. When you take them off, place them in a large ziploc bag and seal it.
Leave the peppers in the bag for at least 20 minutes. They can hang out in there for longer, but they need to steam in the bag for at least 20 minutes. When they are done steaming, scrape the skin off with a knife. It should slide right off.
The first time I roasted peppers I could not figure out why I would blacken these peppers just to get rid of the blackened parts. Trust me, you don’t want that skin on the peppers. First, all that delicious blackened flavor has seeped through the peppers and losing the skin does not change that. Second, the skin will be sort of papery. It is not something that you want to eat.
Once peeled, cut off the stem, split the pepper and scrape out the seeds.
And you’re done! Just slice or chop the peppers as you like. You can use these immediately, refrigerate them for a few days, or freeze them for a few months.
Fire Roasted Green Chiles
Roasted green chiles - great to freeze and keep on hand for future recipes.
SODIUM COUNT: 18 mg in six chiles, about 1.5 mg per serving
- 6 medium Aneheim green chiles*
Place the peppers on the grill over medium high heat. Grill for about 5-10 minutes per side. Rotate the peppers as needed so that the peppers are evenly blackened.
When the peppers are evenly blackened and the skin begins to crack, remove from the grill and place inside a ziploc bag. Seal the bag and let rest for 20 minutes.
After 20 minutes, remove the peppers from the bag and scrape the skin off with a knife. Remove the stem and slit the pepper so that it lays flat. Scrape the seeds out of the pepper with the knife.
Cut or chop the peppers as necessary. At this point, you can use the peppers immediately, refrigerate them for a few days, or freeze them for a few months.
* You can use these instructions to roast other peppers as well. I use the same process when I want to roast poblanos, red peppers, and jalapenos.
NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION Yield: 12 servings (about 2 servings per pepper) Sodium: 1.4 mg, Calories: 9.2 Total Fat: 0.1 g, Saturated Fat: 0.0 g, Cholesterol: 0.0 mg, Carbohydrates: 2.1 g, Fiber: 0.8 g, Sugar: 1.1 g, Protein: 0.4 g.
We get super wimpy peppers in Montana, so typically these peppers are not spicy at all for me. If you live in a region with better peppers than we do (or have sensitive skin), be sure to wear gloves to avoid skin irritation.