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Exploring Jalapeño’s Sweeter Side

Sometimes you want your peppers to get jal-ap-eño business with their heat, other times you want to feel just a bit of their smolder. Like when you’re tending to your sweet tooth teeth, for example.

At Mouth HQ, we learned long ago that satisfying our sugar cravings and our spice cravings don’t have to be mutually exclusive. Because jalapeños have a fruitiness that walks the line between the two, it makes for a tasty bedfellow with some of our most delicious sticky, nutty, chocolate-coated habits. And since jalapeños max out at 8,000 heat units on the Scoville scale (where, for reference, a bell pepper measures 0 and a ghost pepper more than a million), they are far from tear-inducing. Unless, of course, those are tears of happiness, which, sniff, we totally understand.

Kicky, verdant jalapeños meet bright, tart raspberries in The Jam Stand’s Raspberry Jalapeño Jam. (Its official name is “Razzy Gabby & A Side of Jalapeño” thank you very much). It’s a jam so balanced, fresh and sunny that it tastes like it was plucked straight from a garden. Want to please your jam in bread? Spread some on corn bread, slather on wholesome pancakes or spoon atop cream cheese for a quick cheese-and-cracker upgrade. You'll get sweet, you'll get spice, you'll get everything nice.

When PB&J feels a little mundane, kick it up with Better Off Spread’s Jalapeño Peanut Butter. Roasty peanuts get all sweet on some granulated honey and then both get a little hot under the collar from the addition of dehydrated jalapeño. Extra props (and extra clear sinuses) if you double up and add a swipe of that Raspberry Jalapeño Jam. Oh, and a thick smear of that spicy PB down a rib of celery, dotted with some dried cranberries? Call it fire-ants-on-a-log.

Multitaskers everywhere figured out long ago that hankerings for sweet and salty can be deliciously indulged in one fell swoop (see exhibits A, B and C). Hail Fruition Chocolate for adding spicy to that checklist. Enter Dark Chocolate-Covered Jalapeño Corn Nuts: Impossible-not-to-love corn nuts dusted with jalapeño powder, sprinkled with salt and dunked in 68% bean-to-bar chocolate. Oh my, efficiency is delicious.  

A fire-taming glass of milk makes a whole lot more sense with these spicy snacks. A sweet slow burn that hurts so good.

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