3 Best Morita Chili Substitutes

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Morita Chili Substitutes



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Also known as chipotles, morita chilies are widely consumed all through Mexico as well as the United States. Quite prominent in the South-Western U.S. and California; moritas have created a place for themselves in the cookery of many famous chefs from Hawaii to Manhattan.

Chipotle Morita chilis are also called Blackberry chili, Chipotle Colorado, Mora chili, or Morita pepper. Morita is interpreted as “small blackberry” in Spanish.

Owing to its smoky, chocolaty flavor, a lot of people would want to infuse it into their cuisines. But what happens when you can’t find morita chili?

You could just use other morita chili substitutes such as Meco Chipotles, Passila de Oaxaco, and Chipotles. They are also great alternatives for adobo sauce.

What is a Morita Chili?

A Chipotle chili is a jalapeno that has been smoked. Two kinds of Chipotle chilis can be seen in the US, the most popular between them is the Chipotle “Morita” and the hardest to get, which is assumed to be nicest, is known as the Chipotle “Meco”.

There’s a third example called “Capones” which denotes “castrated ones” and they are relatively limited in the US. This red jalapeno has its seeds discarded before smoking. The Capones have a milder heat than the others.

What differentiates the chipotle Morita from the chipotle Meco is that it’s grown and smoked for a smaller amount of time, giving it a distinct flavor form, from the rest.

But our foremost focus for this article is the Morita chilis and its substitutes, now that we have its familial features established, let us proceed.

Morita chili peppers measure about 1″- 2″ long with a flexible, crinkled skin with a color that ranges from brown to dark red.

They have a delicate, smoky zest with delightful chocolate statements. They also have a milder, more fruity flavor described to the chipotle Meco and it produces a very fascinating flavor in dishes like soups, stews, salsas, marinades, and even desserts.

Best Morita Chili Substitutes

Possessing such a unique smoky input, there are only very limited other chilis that would suffice as an adequate alternative for the chili Morita.

If you’re seeking a substitute for this chili, that is nearly in the same heat and flavor level, then we suggest either the Meco chili (5,000 – 10,000 SHU) or the Pasilla de Oaxaca chili (4,000 – 10,000 SHU).

You can similarly utilize proportional amounts of chipotle in adobo sauce plus 1 teaspoon sauce per chili.

1. Meco Chipotles

The best among all the Morita chili substitutes is the Meco chili. This isn’t far-fetched since they are from the same root source, they both are jalapeño peppers, and it is the hardest to locate the chipotle chillis.

Chipotle Meco chillis are refined jalapenos that are made to spend much time on the plant, even lengthier than those that are selected as red jalapenos and smoked as Chipotle Morita chillis.

This extra time on the plant yields an even richer red color and as these chillis begin to lose their moisture, they are then gathered to be converted into “Meco” chipotles. The Chipotle Meco is bigger and tougher than the Chipotle Morita.

In its dried state, the regular Chipotle chili also called Chipotle “Meco” ranges from a pale tan to a thick coffee brown with a wrinkled, and ridged surface.

They are commonly 2″ to 4″ in length and 1″ in width, with moderately thickened flesh.

Chipotle Meco chillis are smoked for nearly twice as long as “Moritas” which makes them more severe and vibrant in zest. They strengthen an intense, earthlike spiciness to many dishes in Mexican cooking.

They can be rehydrated and minced, rehydrated and pureed, ground into a powder, or sliced into bits to be put in both flavorful and sweet dishes.

The Meco chili’s stem and seeds are taken off, and the flesh is mashed into chilli pastes, glazes, marinades, and sauces.

They can be used to make casseroles, bean dishes, dips, and salsas, or they can be chopped and combined with chilis, soups, and stews. In powdered form, they can be crumpled into brownies and cake batters for an unexpected sense of fervor.

To rehydrate your Chipotle Meco, drench them with warm water and soak in the heated water for 10 minutes. They also go nicely well with beef, chicken, honey, pork, potatoes, tomatillos, tomatoes, and with annatto, cilantro, cumin, ginger, Mexican oregano, parsley, sage, and tomato powder.

2. Pasilla de Oaxaca

Don’t confuse them with pasilla chilis, they are not the same. Pasilla de Oaxaca chillis are smoked peppers with subtly fruity notes. Chili Pasilla de Oaxaca is a form of smoked chili that is hot in a medium range.

Resident in the Oaxaca district of southern México and rarely seen anywhere else, Pasilla de Oaxaca chillis are conserved through smoke-drying and are treasured for their sophisticated smoky flavor. It adds an elegant, delicate smokiness to many dishes.

Simply dip one into the pot, and extract it before serving, as you would do with bay leaf. Pasilla de Oaxaca chillis have a noticeable heat level to them.

They bring in around 15,000 Scoville heat units, rendering them just a little milder than the Chipotle pepper. Pasilla de Oaxaca’s fruity, smoky zest wins them an excellent component in any salsa, stew, or marinade recipe.

This flavor outline also renders it the precise fill-in-the-gap flavor for numerous vegan and vegetarian cooking standards that desires a flavorful upgrade.

These chillis are especially delicious when used in recipes for mole negro, which is one of Oaxaca’s vastly popular dishes. They would also make an adequate option, but they are not widespread outside Mexico.

Pasilla de Oaxaca chillis can be identified by distinct terms when they are raw compared to when they are scorched.

When they are still green, they are known as “Mixe chilis” dubbed after the mountainous province of Oaxaca that they are cultivated in and the indigenous folk that resides there.

The Sierra Mixe region of Oaxaca is the only area on earth where these peppers are planted and grown.

3. Chipotles in adobo sauce

They are probably the simplest of all the morita chili substitutes to find.

“Chipotle pepper” originates from the Nahuatl term chilpoctli signifying “smoked chili”. 

These peppers are smoke-dried jalapenos conserved in adobo sauce. They have a unique, smoky, spicy, scantily sweet zest.

This adobo sauce that they are preserved in is also full of flavor, comprised of numerous condiments such as paprika, oregano, and garlic as well as vinegar, onion, and tomato.

Which all work together to improve the elegance of the chipotle peppers, most people preserve their chipotles in adobo. The only impediment to this is the adobo sauce itself, so they may not be adequate for all recipes.

Furthermore, Morita chilies are mostly utilized, in making the prominent retail chipotles in adobo sauce that add fabulous zest to numerous dishes.

The chipotles in adobo are smoked and parched jalapeños, rehydrated, and stored in confectionary and zesty purée of tomato, vinegar, garlic, and other seasonings.

This is done to attain a cherry sauce that is filled with intense, fierce heat but with an abundance of harmony and core.

They’re sophisticated enough to be used as a solo condiment but sufficiently peaceful to go nicely with others, like chilies, fresh herbs, honey, vinegar, dairy, you name it.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is chili Ancho the same as chili Morita?

Yes, they are. If you wither and smoke red jalapenos, you’ll get a Morita chili.

How hot is chili Moritas?

Moritas are generally just as hot as regular jalapeno peppers. On the Scoville Scale, they vary from 2,500 to 8,000 Scoville Heat Units.

Are chipotle and morita the same thing?

Morita chiles are a kind of chipotle pepper. They are a smoked, dried version of red jalapeño peppers.

What kind of chili is Moritas?

Chipotle peppers are essentially ripened jalapeño chillis that have been smoked and dried.

Is chipotle a chili?

Yes, it is. A chipotle is a smoke-dried ripe jalapeño chili pepper used for seasoning.


Morita chili substitutes aren’t very many, which is why you must have a stock supply of them handy, for the future.

And if you happen to run out of it at any time, then this little article should be able to guide you.

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