Ancho Chiles (pronounced "AHN-cho"), Capsicum annuum, are also referred to as chile ancho, ancho chili, and ancho pepper. Known as poblano chiles when in their fresh state, this mild chile is native to the Mexican state of Puebla.
The name chile ancho translates as "wide chile". This heart shaped dried pepper is about 3" wide and 4" in length and tapers to a point. They are a deep, reddish brown to black in color and the texture is wrinkled.
A top-grade Ancho should be clean, pliable, untorn and aromatic with a smell that is a bit like prunes.
Ancho Chiles are the most commonly used dried chile in Mexican cuisine and are one of the famous "holy trinity" of chiles used in Mexican moles, along with Pasilla Negro Chiles and Guajillo Chiles.
There are typically 2 Ancho Chiles per ounce.
Ancho Chiles have a mild, fruity flavor with undertones of plum, raisin, chocolate, and tobacco, and a slight earthy bitterness.
This is considered a mild chile, measuring between 500-1,500 Scoville Heat Units (SHU).
How to Use
The staple chile in authentic Mexican cooking, Ancho peppers are a critical ingredient in birria, red chili, tamales, pozole, many moles, enchiladas, salsa, soups and any sauce that may need some deep chile flavor. Add to a spice rub and sprinkle over meats and vegetables. It goes particularly well with beef and pork.
You can substitute Mulato Chiles for Ancho Chiles, since they also come from the poblano pepper. They share many flavor characteristics and a similar heat level. Pasilla Negro Chiles are just about as mild as the Ancho, and delivers the same sort of deep, rich flavors as the Ancho. Guajillo Chiles are a little bit hotter than the Ancho, but have a similar fruity flavor and depth.
Country of Origin
Depending on the time of year, our Ancho Chiles may come from either Mexico or the United States.
Serving Size1 chile, 15g
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value*