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Home » Poblano vs Pasilla: What’s the Difference? 

Poblano vs Pasilla: What’s the Difference? 

If you’re looking for a delicious, smoky pepper to add to your dishes, you may be wondering what the difference is between poblano and pasilla peppers.

Both of these peppers are popular in Mexican cuisine, but they have different flavors and uses. In this blog post, we’ll explore the differences between pasilla vs poblano peppers so you can decide which one is best for your recipes! 

What is Poblano?

Poblano is a type of chili pepper that is typically used in Mexican cuisine. The peppers are long and slender, with a deep green color and a mild to medium heat level. When dried, poblano peppers are known as ancho peppers. 

Poblanos can be used in a variety of dishes, including soups, stews, sauces, and fillings for tacos and burritos. While the peppers are often eaten fresh, they can also be roasted, grilled, or even made into a powder. Regardless of how they are used, poblano peppers add a unique flavor to any dish.

What is Pasilla? 

The pasilla pepper is a variety of chili pepper that is typically dried and used to flavor savory dishes. Also known as the negro pepper, pasilla peppers are long and slender, with a deep black color. They have a mild to medium heat level, with a complex flavor that includes notes of chocolate and licorice. 

Pasilla peppers are an essential ingredient in many classic Mexican dishes, including moles and enchiladas.

They can also be used to add depth of flavor to soups, stews, and sauces. When shopping for pasilla peppers, look for peppers that are pliable and free from wrinkles or blemishes. Dried pasilla peppers will keep for several months when stored in a cool, dark place.

Comparison Table [Pasilla vs Poblano]

Both pasilla and poblano peppers are popular ingredients in Mexican cuisine. However, there are some key differences between these two types of peppers. Check out the following pasilla vs poblano comparison table.

Pasilla PeppersPoblano Peppers
Pasilla peppers are long and thin, with a deep black color.Poblano peppers are shorter and wider than pasilla peppers. They also have a dark green color.
Pasilla peppers have a milder flavor than poblano peppers, making them ideal for dishes that require a subtle heatIn terms of flavor, poblano peppers are slightly spicier than pasilla peppers. As a result, they are often used in dishes that require a bit more heat.

Whether you’re looking for a milder or spicier flavor, either type of pepper can be a great addition to your next meal.

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Poblano vs Pasilla: What’s the Difference? 

For anyone who loves Mexican food, peppers are an essential ingredient. But with so many different types of peppers to choose from, it can be tough to know which one is best for your dish. 

  • If you’re looking for a pepper with a bit of heat, you’ll want to choose a poblano. These peppers are typically milder than other types of chili peppers, but they can still pack a punch. 
  • If you’re looking for a flavor-packed pepper that isn’t too spicy, the pasilla is a great choice. These long, dark peppers have a deep, rich flavor that pairs well with meats and other hearty dishes. 

Let’s discuss Pasilla vs Poblano in detail now. 


Pasilla peppers are dark brown in color and have a much more complex flavor than poblano peppers. Poblano peppers are green and have a slightly smoky, earthy flavor. Pasilla peppers are a mild, black pepper.

They are about 6 to 7 inches long and have a wrinkled skin. Poblano peppers are a mild, green pepper. They are about 4 to 5 inches long and have smooth, green skin.


Pasilla peppers tend to be hotter than poblano peppers. This is because pasilla peppers are dried while poblano peppers are fresh. The drying process increases the heat of the pepper.


The pasilla pepper is a dried chile pepper that is dark brown or black in color. It has a sweet, rich flavor with slight hints of chocolate and raisins. The poblano pepper is a fresh green chile that has a mild, earthy flavor. It is the most popular fresh green chile in Mexico.

Level of Heat

The level of heat in a pasilla pepper is significantly lower than in a poblano pepper. Pasilla peppers are generally used in dishes where a subtle chili flavor is desired, while poblano peppers are used in dishes with a more pronounced chili flavor.


Pasilla peppers are often used in dishes such as chilaquiles and mole sauce. Poblano peppers can be used in dishes such as Chili Rellenos and enchiladas.

Pasilla peppers are not as hot as other chili peppers, so they can be used in dishes with medium or even low levels of heat.

Poblano peppers are the perfect pepper to use when you want the flavor of a chili pepper without too much heat. So the next time you’re at the grocery store, reach for a poblano or pasilla pepper and enjoy the best of what Mexican cuisine has to offer.

So which is hotter? Pasilla vs Poblano!

The Pasilla (Chile Negro) is a dried chile with a deep, rich flavor and a slightly sweet taste. It’s not as hot as the Ancho chile, but it’s definitely spicy.

The Poblano (Ancho) is also a dried chile, and it’s the most popular variety of poblano pepper. They are mildly hot with a slightly sweet, smoky flavor.

And their uses? When do you use a poblano or pasilla?

Poblano and pasilla peppers are both common ingredients in Mexican cuisine. 

  • Poblanos are typically used in dishes that require a milder chili pepper, such as chiles rellenos or salsa verde. 
  • Pasilla peppers, on the other hand, are typically used in dishes that require a more robust flavor, such as mole sauce or adobo sauce. 

Both peppers can also be used in a variety of other dishes, including stews, soups, and tacos. 

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When choosing between a poblano and a pasilla pepper, it is important to consider the desired flavor profile of the dish. For a milder flavor, opt for a poblano pepper. For a more robust flavor, opt for a pasilla pepper. Now you know the difference between pasilla vs poblano peppers, let’s discuss a few FAQs about it. 

Are Poblano And Pasilla The Same?

Poblano and pasilla peppers are often used interchangeably in recipes, but they are actually two different types of chili pepper. 

  • Poblanos are milder, with a sweet, grassy flavor. They are typically used in dishes like chiles rellenos and enchiladas. 
  • Pasilla peppers, on the other hand, are more earthy and smoky, with a slight heat that buildups as you eat them. They are commonly used in mole sauces and stews. 

Which Pepper Is Better?

Poblano and pasilla peppers are both mild chili peppers that are popular in Mexican cuisine. Poblanos are typically used in dishes like chiles rellenos, while pasillas are often used in mole sauce.

Both peppers have a similar mild flavor, but there are some subtle differences between the two. 

Poblanos are slightly more sweet and fruity, while pasillas tend to be more smoky and herbaceous.

Texture-wise, poblanos are thick and crunchy, while pasillas are thin and papery. When it comes to heat, poblanos are usually milder than pasillas. 

However, there can be some variation in heat levels depending on the specific pepper. Overall, both poblanos and pasillas are versatile chili peppers that can add flavor and depth to a variety of dishes.

What is another name for a Poblano pepper?

Other names for a Poblano pepper are Ancho pepper and Chile Colorado.

Can I substitute Pasilla for Poblano?

Yes, you can substitute Pasilla for Poblano. Pasilla are dried chilies that are dark brown in color and have a rich, earthy flavor. They can be used in both savory and sweet dishes. Poblanos are fresh green chilies that have a slightly spicy flavor. 

What pepper is most similar to Poblano?

Ancho pepper is the most similar to Poblano pepper. They are both dark, dried peppers with a deep, earthy flavor. They are also used in many of the same dishes. For example, Ancho pepper is often used in mole sauce.

What kind of pepper is Pasilla?

Pasilla pepper is a dried and smoked version of the Chilaca pepper. It is long and wrinkled, with a deep chocolate brown color.

Pasilla peppers are mildly spicy with a sweet, earthy flavor. They are used in mole sauce and other Mexican dishes.

Is pasilla pepper hot?

Yes, the pasilla pepper is a hot pepper. It is in the same family as the jalapeño pepper and has a similar heat level.

The pasilla pepper typically has a mild to moderate heat level, but it can vary depending on the specific variety. 

Final Words

So, what’s the difference main between pasilla vs poblano pepper? The answer is that they are quite different! Poblanos are mild while pasillas are smoky and complex.

They can both be used in many of the same dishes, but it’s important to know which pepper you’re using so that the dish can be as flavorful as possible. Have you tried cooking with poblanos or pasillas before? What did you make?

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