You are in: Home / Kitchen Dictionary Entry
Lost? Site Map

Kitchen Dictionary: cayenne pepper

Pronounced: KI-yehn

cayenne pepper

A hot, pungent powder made from various tropical chiles. The cayenne chile is a bright red chile that ranges from 2-5 inches long and about 1/2 inch in diameter. Cayenne chiles are generally sold dried and used in soups and sauces. The majority of cayenne chiles are used to make cayenne pepper. Used both in cooking and medicine, it owes its hot flavor to a chemical called capsaicin, which comprises about 12% of the chile. The word cayenne seems to come from kian, the name of a pepper among the Tupi Indians in what is now French Guiana and was named after either the Cayenne River or the capital of the country, Cayenne.


Season: available year-round

How to select: Also sold whole or crushed as red pepper flakes.

Matches well with: cheese, corn, crab, eggplant, fish, lobster, onions, peppers, potatoes, rice, tomatoes

Substitutions: red chile powder (don't confuse with chili powder, a mixed seasoning) OR paprika (milder) OR red pepper flakes OR chili powder (contains other spices)

More Cayenne Pepper Recipes

Nutrition Facts

Calculated for 1 tbsp
Amount Per Serving %DV
Calories 16
Calories from Fat 8 (48%)
Total Fat 0.9g 1%
Saturated Fat 0.2g 0%
Monounsaturated Fat 0.0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.4g
Trans Fat 0.0g
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 1mg 0%
Potassium 106mg 3%
Total Carbohydrate 3.0g 1%
Dietary Fiber 1.4g 5%
Sugars 1.4g
Protein 0.6g 1%

How is this calculated?