Roasted green chilies vs diced green chilies?

I’m making a chicken-white bean chili. (Please, please, no debating whether it is “really” chili or not. I’m making it and that is what the recipe is called.)
Anyway. It calls for 2 cans of “roasted green chilies.” I found just one can and have another can of “diced green chilies.”
Anyone with experience, can you enlighten me? I’d guess the roasted is milder and so I may not even use the regular diced since I’m kind of a weenie. Thanks!

The roasted one may be considerably milder and might be a different type of pepper (e.g., serranos or similar). The diced chilies may be jalapenos, which can be pretty spicy.

One ingredient list says “fire-roasted green chilies” and the other just says “green chilies” along with vinegar, salt etc…

I don’t think roasting has any effect on the spiciness of chilies. I’ve had plenty of roasted chilies that bring the heat. I’d be willing to bet that the “diced green chilies” are also roasted. That’s how you get the skins off them.

I’d also bet that they’re Anaheim chilies, and they can be anything from no heat at all to pretty smoking. The heat level should be on the label. Hatch chilies (I think) are just another variety of Anaheims with a trademarked name.

Gotcha. We will try the “add and taste” method, I guess!

Roasting will add a smokey flavor that some folks like, but won’t change the heat level by much. There shouldn’t be any harm in using one can of each.

Yep. And usually the “green chiles” are of the Anaheim or New Mexico variety (which are similar to Anaheims) for applications such as this one (although it can be any green chili.)
Heat levels can vary wildly depending exactly on the chili. Anaheims are usually fairly mild, but Hatch chiles can vary depending on the strain, some (like Lumbre) getting up into serrano-level heat territory. I personally think roasting is quite important to bring the flavor out, but it’s not at all necessary. I made a while chicken chili yesterday, and I got lazy and just used some Rotel I had lying around for the green chiles.

If the cans say “Ortega” on them, they contain Anaheims. Mild flavor. Roasted Anaheims will be a little more flavorful, but for a recipe you can use them interchangably.

I’ll agree that the green chiles you have on hand will do fine.

Concerning The Chili Controversy, if you want to enter a Chili Cookoff in Texas, it’s wise to avoid beans. The spices tend to muy picante & the meat beefy, porky, gamey and/or road kill. Ah, I knew some of the old time chili heads who gathered in Terlingua every year. Maybe some still do…

What you’re making sounds like a variation on Neiman Marcus’s Chili Blanco. That’s Texan, too. In fact, we’re having a cold evening here & I’m wishing I had the ingredients on hand…

Green Chiles are roasted to remove the skin. (Note, I am talking about what are called Anaheims, though if you were to call them that in New Mexico you just might get shot. NM chiles are not Anaheims and are hotter)

If at all possible STAY AWAY FROM CANNED CHILE! They are evil and nasty. More stores are starting to carry frozen green chile, though they are still hard to find the further you go east. If you can, get Hatch.

Side note, the hot green chile in New Mexico can get silly hot. The hotness comes from the stem/seeds. I once worked at a Mexican joint and the prep cook made red chile without removing the stems or seeds. The first batch was served the next day to a regular customer who liked it hot. He started choking after the first bite, thought he was gonna die. We had to mix the chile down, the ratio was about 7 to 1 to get it down to eatable levels.


You can also roast them at home, but they are a little bit of a pain in the ass. When I do it, I throw a batch under the broiler and try to get them nice and roasted/black all over. Then you throw them into a plastic bag (I use a ziplock freezer bag) to steam and cool off for about a half hour. Remove from bag and peel the charred skin off as best you can by rubbing it off with your fingers. Most of it should come off fairly easily if you roasted them well enough. It’s okay if you leave some behind. You can also do this under running water. Stem and seed them, and you can now freeze them or use them in your favorite dish. They freeze very well, so just portion them out in small zip locks. For this reason, it’s worth doing a reasonably large batch.

One of the things I love about the southwest is the availability of roasted green chiles at the supermarket. I’ve never seen them here in Chicago, even in the Mexican groceries I typically frequent. I think Whole Foods sometimes has them frozen, and they have the fresh chiles for a few weeks in late August/early September.

There really is quite a difference in flavor between freshly roasted or frozen roasted green chiles and any of the canned brands. I’ve tried a number of them, but they lose their pungency in the canning process and they have this odd, slightly acidic taste to them.

I’ve been looking around and it seems unanimous that New Mexico or Hatch chilis are in fact Anaheims. They do tend to be hotter than those grown elsewhere, and there are a ton of varieties with differing levels of heat. I guess it is also correct to say that Anaheim chilies are a mild variety of New Mexico chilies, but they are the same plant.

ETA: And you can do this with a variety of green chiles: Anaheims, New Mexico/Hatch, and Poblanos are the ones I typically roast. Anaheims and New Mexico/Hatch are similar to each other (you’ll get all sorts of bickering about this, but they do seem to be closely related to each other. Some say Anaheims are a mild variety of New Mexico peppers. Some say New Mexico peppers are an off-shoot of Anaheims. At any rate, they are similar, with New Mexico chiles generally being spicier than Anaheims, but there are mild New Mexico chiles, as well.) Poblanos have a very distinct taste that is quite different than Anaheims and New Mexico chiles. I find them “deeper” in flavor–almost kind of smoky and earthy. It’s hard to describe. But it’s a very distinct flavor, and I don’t know any other chile with a similar flavor.

Canned chilis from the grocery store probably aren’t going to be very hot and they’re canned, so you’re going for color more than taste.

I’ve used canned before; in fact, I don’t think I’ve seen frozen but I’ll keep my eyes out…maybe the hfs or ethnic groceries will have them. I do like the canned, having never used anything else, and since I’m a weenie, I can taste the heat. I’ll use plenty of other spices too, so they won’t be the only flavor at least.

For green chili I really like to use a ratio of 5 poblanos, 4 jalepenos, and 3 serranos.
I just lightly coat them in oil and roast 'em in a really hot oven turning as they blister. Sometimes I’ll throw in 5 tomatillos with the peppers to roast if I want a fruity flavor.

Mmm… I think I may just have to roast some chiles today.

Yeah, the poblano/jalapeño/serrano mix puts me more in mind of Mexican chile verde recipes, while the Anaheims/New Mexico/Hatch put me in a New Mexico green chili state of mind. I’m sure there’s some crossover, but that’s how my brain tends to categorize these flavors.

That sounds delicious. Hope it turns out.

The ones with vinegar/salt/etc are brined/pickled and (IMO) wouldn’t be a good fit with the recipe you’re talking about–I’d go with the pure chilies. Plus, fire-roasted is always better.

Usually there are black bits in Ortega chiles, from the roasting.