Farm To Table | Sauces / Dips / Dressings

Nuclear Jalapeno Hot Pepper Relish

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Hot Pepper Relish is a great way to preserve all of the peppers you have at the end of the season! Pepper relish is super easy to can and shelf stable!

Two pop open hot dogs on buns topped with pepper relishPin
Hot Pepper Relish

My big sons’ review of this recipe is that it the best thing I have ever made!! 🙂 Well, I don’t know about that, but it sure is very tasty.

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If you are not a huge fan of spicy heat, the Hot Pepper Relish is NOT for you. It is hot. Go for the sweet pepper relish, instead. It is very mild, containing only a few jalapeños.

At the end of the season, we always have bushels of peppers left. We have to come up with creative ways to use up a lot of peppers!

We have been making different relishes for ages, including, cucumber and zucchini, so why not try a relish with peppers? This relish does not disappoint. Honestly, you can’t have too many condiments, in my book. It takes a same old, same old boring meal to all new realms. Perfect.

What you need

  • hot peppers – use any hot pepper you have access to. Jalapenos, Hungarian wax, habanero, serrano peppers, ghost pepper,
  • vinegar
  • sugar
  • turmeric
  • dry mustard
  • pepper
  • celery seed
Ingredients for relish; peppers, sugar, vinegar, turmeric, dry mustard, pepper, celery seed.Pin

How to make it

  1. Wash peppers. Wear gloves!! Very important! If you don’t, you will have to wash your hands 100 times to get all of the pepper oils off your hands. Don’t touch eyes or any mucus membrane. Halve them and remove most of the seeds and ribs. You can technically leave them in if you want the heat level nuclear.
  2. Chop up all of the peppers into fine pieces.
  3. Chop up the onions fine. We used the food processor and just pulse until they were the size I wanted.
  4. Add the vinegar, spices, salt and sugar.
  5. Mix and bring the mixture to a boil.
  6. Then reduce heat and simmer for at least 10 minutes, stir occasionally. Pack pepper mixture in jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Process for 15 minutes, adjusting for altitude. See recipe below for process time altitude adjustment.

You can adjust the level of heat in this relish by the number of hot peppers included in the mix. If you like medium or hot salsas, add 2 more jalapeños for every degree of heat you would like to increase. I would call this Hot Pepper Relish hot.

One hot dogs topped with relish and mustardPin

As always, when making salsas or hot sauces, err on the side of caution. You can always add more but you can’t take it away. Always taste for heat before canning any sauces, bearing in mind that as it sits, it will gain heat, not lose it.

Two hot dogs topped with relish.Pin

Hope you enjoyed the recipe today for pepper relish! Give it a try next month when you have peppers coming out of your ears. If you like this easy condiment, you have to give our Oscar Relish a try. It is one of my favorites. The recipe for Sweet Pepper Relish is here.

Love Gardening? If you love growing your own produce, these posts are packed full of information about how to get that big harvest by the end of the season! Don’t miss my How to Start a Garden Series! The first part is Planning Your Garden! Second is Preparing the Garden Site. The third is Choosing Plants and Planting Your Garden. The fourth is Garden Maintenance, and the last is Harvesting a Garden and Preserving the Harvest, this post has over 100 FREE recipes for preserving your harvest!

Enjoy! And have fun cooking!

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Hot pepper RelishPin

Hot Pepper Relish

Hot Pepper Relish is a great way to preserve all of the peppers you have at the end of the season! Pepper relish is super easy to can and shelf stable!
See Step by Step Photos Above!Most of our recipes have step by step photos and videos! Also helpful tips so that you can make it perfectly the first time and every time! Scroll up to see them!
5 from 25 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Canning: 15 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 128 tablespoons
Calories: 12kcal
Author: Beth Neels
Cost: $5


  • 5.5 cups peppers, stems removed, chopped fine in food processor use jalapeno, serrano, habanero, Hungarian wax, or any other hot pepper you have access to.
  • 2 cups onion, chopped fine in food processor
  • 1.5 cups cider vinegar
  • 1.5 cups Sugar
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp dry mustard
  • 1.5 tsp celery seed


  • Combine all ingredients in a large pot. Heat to boiling, then reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until thickened, the consistency of pickle relish.
    5.5 cups peppers, stems removed, chopped fine in food processor, 2 cups onion, chopped fine in food processor, 1.5 cups Sugar, 1 tsp turmeric, 1 tsp Black Pepper, 1 tsp dry mustard, 1.5 tsp celery seed, 1.5 cups cider vinegar
  • Process in hot jars for 15 minutes, adjusting for altitude. For the method for canning, see this recipe
  • Sweet Pepper Relish If you are making hot Pepper Relish, use all hot peppers!!
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Makes 4 pints.
After processing, allow jars to cool on counter for 24 hours. Test jars for seal, If center on lid flexes up and down, jar is not sealed. 
Store unsealed jars in refrigerator.
Store sealed jars in a cool place.
Pepper Relish is shelf stable at least one year. 
If you prefer relish that is not as hot, try my Sweet Pepper Relish!
Adjustment for altitude
0-1000 feet above sea level    10 minutes
1000-6000 feet above sea level    15 minutes
above 600o feet            20 minutes


Calories: 12kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Potassium: 16mg | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 25IU | Vitamin C: 5.8mg | Calcium: 2mg | Iron: 0.1mg
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  1. 5 stars
    Made it and the jars are already empty. My family loves it. I am assuming the measurement for the peppers is after chopping? I found I had a little more moisture than I expected, so am thinking of chopping first then measuring for the second batch.

    1. I did chop the peppers first. I will add that to the recipe notes. Thanks for letting me know. I use the leftover brine to make spicy ketchup and spicy mayonnaise. Great on just about everything!

  2. 5 stars
    Amazing recipe, I have so many peppers every year and I am so happy I found this recipe! Just doubled the recipe and made 8 jars. Looks and smells so amazing.. cannot wait to try this!! The taste I did take was so goooood!!!

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