These blistered shishito peppers are cooked to perfection in a skillet then tossed with butter and served with a quick and easy lemon-garlic aioli. This is one of my favorite vegetable recipes of all time, and I devour them all summer! You’ll love this appetizer or side dish just as much as I do, guaranteed.
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What Makes These Blistered Shishito Peppers So Good
- Blistered shishito peppers literally could not be easier to make. All you need to do is sauté the peppers in a little avocado oil for 10 minutes, then toss them in melted butter and a little salt and lemon juice. If you’ve got a skillet and a stovetop, you can have roasted shishito peppers.
- The easy lemon-garlic aioli complements the shishito peppers SO well. The creaminess of the sauce with the crisp texture of the roasted peppers, and a light, bright lemon flavor throughout? Perfection.
- They’re a great low-calorie option. The blistered shishito peppers without the lemon-garlic aioli clock in at a mere 83 calories per serving (and only 4g net carbs, if you’re counting those!).
- Shishito peppers are in season in the summer and early fall, which makes them a perfect summer snack or appetizer. You can easily freeze the fresh peppers to use throughout the winter, though!
Key Ingredients for Blistered Shishito Peppers with Lemon-Garlic Aioli
Shishito Peppers – These small, vibrant green peppers are a little sweet when they’re raw – and, yes, you can eat them raw! When they’re charred, though? Oh, mama. Blistering shishito peppers amplifies their smoky taste, and I promise you won’t be able to eat just one. Shishito peppers aren’t the same as Padrón peppers, but they’re similar. Padróns would work in this recipe if you can’t find shishitos.
Mayonnaise – Mayo is the base for your lemon-garlic aioli. I really love the cool creaminess of mayonnaise with the crisp, fresh flavor of the peppers. There’s something so pleasing about the two textures together. If you’re vegan, you can use vegan mayonnaise. Paleo or on a Whole30? We’ve got a great recipe for One Minute Whole30 Mayo that you could use here! You don’t actually have to serve your blistered shishito peppers with any dipping sauce at all, but I really love the flavor it adds!
Are Shishito Peppers Hot?
Not really, no! Well… kind of. But mostly, no. So the thing is, most shishito peppers (seriously, like 90% of them) are actually pretty mild. If you want to get technical, they land anywhere from 50 to 200 Scoville heat units, and most are closer to 50 SHU*. Every now and then, though, you’ll get one that’s got a really good bite to it. The hotter peppers won’t look any different from the mild ones, which kind of turns your appetizer into a fun game!
*For reference, bell peppers are around 0 SHU. Jalapeño peppers range anywhere from 2,500 SHU to 8,000 SHU.
Are Shishito Peppers Good for You?
Yes! Blistered or not, shishito peppers have a lot of nutritional benefits. They’re rich in free-radical fighting antioxidants, and the high amount of vitamins C, B6, and E are great for your immune system. These vitamins also aid in collagen production, and the fibrous peppers are great for your digestive system.
- As the shishito peppers blister, steam may build up inside them, which can cause them to burst or pop. Use a splatter screen, or poke a small hole in the end of the peppers before tossing them in oil. The hole will allow the moisture to vent a little.
- You want to leave the peppers alone while they sauté so they have a chance to really develop that beautiful char… but don’t leave them alone so long that they burn or stick to the skillet. Stir them once every 2 minutes to prevent them burning, but leave them alone other than those 3-4 stirs.
- Shishito peppers start out wrinkly, so tossing them in oil before you cook them helps get oil into every nook and cranny of each pepper. That lets the peppers cook more evenly. You could just put them straight into the skillet, skipping the oil toss altogether, but the oil in the skillet won’t coat them as thoroughly.
- If you want to really dress them up, you can stuff your blistered shishito peppers with a soft cheese, or just serve them with a cheese plate. Or, instead of lemon-garlic aioli, you could serve your peppers with a Cilantro Lime Dressing.
More Veggie Recipes You’ll Love
- Instant Pot Corn on the Cob with Honey Butter
- Oven-Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
- Roasted Sweet Potato Salad
- Instant Pot Stuffed Peppers
- Roasted Grape Tomatoes
- Brown Sugar & Honey Glazed Carrots
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Blistered Shishito Peppers with Lemon-Garlic Aioli
- Large, heavy skillet
- Medium bowl
For the Shishito Peppers
- Heat 1 tablespoon neutral oil in large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. At the same time, place peppers in medium bowl with additional oil and toss to coat.
- When skillet is hot, add peppers in one even layer. Work in batches if needed to avoid overcrowding the skillet. Sauté peppers uncovered.
- Let peppers cook undisturbed, other than quickly stirring them approximately every 2 minutes. Sauté until blistered and charred, approximately 6 to 8 minutes total.
- While peppers sauté, make lemon-garlic aioli. Add mayonnaise, garlic, salt, and juice of 1 quarter of lemon to bowl. Combine thoroughly. Taste and adjust salt and/or lemon juice as desired.
- When peppers are blistered (softened and charred in spots), add 1 tablespoon butter to skillet and let melt. Squeeze juice of 1 quarter of lemon over peppers. Sprinkle with plenty of salt and use tongs to toss peppers to coat in butter and lemon juice.
- Transfer peppers to plate, or serve in skillet, with lemon-garlic aioli.
- Make it Vegan: Use vegan butter for the peppers and vegan mayonnaise in the aioli.
- Make it Paleo/Whole30: Use ghee instead of butter for the peppers, and use our recipe for Whole30 Mayonnaise to make a mayo for your aioli.
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