Vegetarian

Chipotle Alfredo Sauce

Chipotle Alfredo Sauce

Creamy with a touch of fire and smoke…

A simple pasta with alfredo sauce is made into something more dramatic with the inclusion of smoky chipotle peppers. Canned chipotle in adobo sauce brings a touch of smoke and fire to the table. It’s a delicious combo with the simple creaminess of alfredo sauce. Pair it with chicken or shrimp for a more hearty meal. Or thicken up the sauce a bit with some extra simmering time for something more dip-worthy.

If smokiness is not your thing, but you’re still looking for a fiery kick to your alfredo sauce, take a look at this delicious alternative. Our spicy alfredo sauce recipe uses cayenne – a more neutral flavor though with a certain uptick in kick – so the overall creamy alfredo flavor remains pure.

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Spicy Green Bean Casserole

Spicy Green Bean Casserole

A smoky, fiery take on the green bean classic…

Here’s a little twist on the classic green bean casserole that many of us grew up with. It has all of the cream of mushroom goodness you expect, but the added kick is smoky chipotle pepper powder. Chipotle’s smokiness is so good with the earthy flavor of the mushrooms, and its jalapeño-level heat is still pretty family-friendly, particularly with the amount we use here.

Keep the recipe handy for any time of year. Spicy green bean casserole is one of those versatile sides that works just as well as a BBQ side as it does next to a holiday ham or turkey. Plus, it’s an excellent way to use a ton of those fresh green beans from your garden (though canned cut green beans work well too).,

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Spicy Creole sauce

Spicy Creole Sauce

Butter and spice…

This butter-based spicy Creole sauce is plenty rich with a whole lot of Southern charm. It uses a wide variety of spices off the spice rack – most of which are part of a typical Creole spice mix. So if you have a premade Creole seasoning at the ready, you could swap out the dried seasonings below for a comparable amount of seasoning (approximately three tablespoons). Note – Creole seasonings differ slightly in ingredients, so there may be a slightly different end flavor if you choose this option. Our homemade Creole seasoning recipe, for instance, includes basil and thyme in the mix.

Cayenne pepper is the spicy star here (and would also be present in a pre-made seasoning mix), but the sauce also gets a little heat from a few dashes of Tabasco sauce. Adjust both to your liking (up or down). Try this sauce with fish, particularly shrimp and catfish. Or add some delicious spice to your breakfast. This sauce is oh so tasty drizzled over scrambled eggs.

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Cranberry jalapeno salsa

Cranberry Jalapeño Salsa

Tangy and sweet with fresh bite!

Your turkey may never be the same when you add a little cranberry jalapeño salsa to the table. It’s tangy and sweet with a fresh bite – a bold holiday appetizer or side. But don’t save it just for holidays! It’s perfect served atop turkey or chicken any time of year, providing lots of zing to the meal. And it’s so delicious simply poured over cream cheese and served with tortilla chips or crackers.

Jalapeño pepper is obviously the spicy star of this recipe, but you could go even bolder by using serrano peppers instead. They often deliver double the heat of the jalapeño, and sometimes more, with a comparable fresh and bright flavor that pairs well with cranberry’s sweet zing. And to get the most from the heat, allow this salsa to rest for an hour in the refrigerator for the best possible flavor. It takes a little time for that jalapeño spiciness to truly permeate throughout the salsa.

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Chipotle Pumpkin Seeds

Chipotle Pumpkin Seeds

Smoky snacking…

Pumpkins are the vegetable gift that keeps on giving. Not only do you have the delicious pumpkin flesh to partake in for spicy pumpkin pies, you also have those fresh pumpkin seeds that are oh so good for snacking. You can spice up pumpkin seeds in many ways, but one of our faves is via chipotle powder. Roasted chipotle pumpkin seeds have that earthy flavor you expect. Plus that chipotle pepper provides a tasty hint of smokiness along with a very eatable medium heat.

If you don’t have chipotle powder around the house, you can purchase some from our spicery. Or you can opt for using cayenne powder. See a good spicy pumpkin seeds recipe here that will serve. It won’t provide the smokiness, but it doubles down on the spiciness due to the extra heat of cayenne pepper.

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black bean mole soup

Black Bean Mole Soup

A sweet earthy take on this popular soup…

If you’re a fan of Mexican mole and its sweet earthiness, then you’re going to love the combo of mole and black beans. Black bean mole soup is bold – not particularly in heat, but certainly in spices. With its hint of chocolate, nutty undertone, and exotic spices, mole brings flair to black beans. It’s perfect as a hearty lunch or as an appetizer to Mexican meals.

As a topper, our chipotle lime crema gives a nice smoky tang that pairs well with the earthy sweetness of this soup. Ancho powder is part of the holy trinity of chilies that are typically used in mole. It’s earthy and sweet with very little spice. If you want something bolder in the spiciness department, try jumping to guajillo pepper (another holy trinity pepper). Or chipotle powder also works, and it’s a much more common find on spice racks. 

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jalapeno arugula aioli

Jalapeño Arugula Aioli

A fresh tasting dip or spread…

When you first think arugula and jalapeño, you may not think there’s much in common. But there’s a lot more “there” there than you may think. Arugula, with its fresh peppery taste, pairs so well with the bright, grassy flavor of jalapeño peppers. It makes for one delicious aioli that’s perfect either as a dip or a spread. It’s particularly good on veggie sandwiches or go hearty and try it as a side to steak. It’s a fresh (and lightly fiery) sauce that’s pretty versatile even with its unique flavor.

Jalapeño peppers are typically hot enough for most. But, if you’re like us, you may want to increase the heat up a notch. We recommend adjusting the chili pepper used instead of increasing the amount of jalapeños used. Serrano peppers have a similar (though not exact) bright flavor, but they are a notch up on the pepper scale – often twice as hot (or even more) than a jalapeño.

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ancho pumpkin soup

Ancho Pumpkin Soup

Lightly smoky and sweet…

Ancho pepper is mild – merely a tickle on the taste buds in terms of spiciness – but there’s plenty of flavor behind this Mexican chili. It’s smoky, earthy, and a little sweet – all of which are perfectly paired with the fall flavors in pumpkin. This is one soup the whole family can enjoy and those that like “spiced” pumpkin dishes will certainly feel at home with the touches of cinnamon and cumin to boot. As a twist on the recipe, consider using maple syrup instead of brown sugar. It doubles down on the sweetness of the soup.

If you’re a spicy food fan with a love for pumpkin soup, be sure to check out some of our other options, like Thai pumpkin soup or one with a Moroccan flair.

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spicy blue cheese dressing

Spicy Blue Cheese Dressing

Spicy isn’t just for those buffalo wings…

Pairing fire with fire can be a ton of fun on game day or party night – fiery buffalo wings and a fiery dipping sauce. Cayenne pepper is the fiery fuel in this spicy blue cheese dressing (and you can opt for a little Sriracha sauce as well for extra heat – see the notes). This spicy dressing is also delicious on salads and hamburgers, so keep the recipe at the ready no matter the time of year.

Spicy blue cheese dressing is also a quick way to add some spice to way-to-mild chicking wing recipes. It takes just a few minutes to make, but provides plenty of punch!

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