Canned salsa

Asked September 12, 2013, 8:16 PM EDT

It is my understanding that different types of peppers may be used in place of a pepper called for in a salsa recipe approved for water-bath canning, without impacting safety, so long as the total quantity/amount remains the same. My question is this: assuming I want to switch out an Anaheim or a pablamo-type pepper for a jalapeno (or vice versa), obviously a jalapeno is significantly smaller than the Anaheim or pablamo or even a green bell pepper. Some recipes specify how many peppers to use, but not necessarily in cups. How, then, may I safely substitute peppers and keep overall quantity the same while taking into account different sizes of peppers when only the # of peppers is given in the recipe, not the amount in cups? Please advise.

Salt Lake County Utah

1 Response

You can substitute peppers in salsa recipes. To accurately determine how to substitute peppers when given cups or number of peppers, you will need to weigh the amount of recommended peppers and substitute the same weight with the desired pepper. So, if the recipe calls for 3 Anaheim peppers and you weigh them and find they weigh 2 ounces, then you may substitute 2 ounces with Jalapeno peppers. They may be some variation in pepper size within a type but not much and is accounted for in tested recipes. Recipes sometimes use cups for dry goods for simplicity but cups is a measure of volume so using cups to measure a different pepper would not be accurate. If you have additional questions you can contact me at bowen@vt.edu.