Roasting, Cooling, Peeling, Storing and Freezing Hatch Chiles

Want to take advantage of the unique taste of Hatch Chiles, but not sure how to prepare them? This step-by-step guide will help you bring out their famous, delicious, roasted flavor.


Keep reading to become an expert in roasting, cooling, peeling, storing and freezing Hatch Chiles.

Hatch Chiles can be roasted over an open flame or under the broiler in the oven. It takes approximately 8 minutes for the roasting process depending on size; smaller peppers will take less time and larger peppers may take more time.

  • To roast over an open flame on the stove: Hold the chile over a medium flame using long-handled tongs, turning occasionally until evenly charred.
  • To roast over an open flame on the barbecue: This is the authentic traditional method of roasting hatch chiles. Heat the grill until hot. Place chiles on a charcoal or gas grill about 5-6 inches above heat source. Using long-handled tongs, turn the chiles over direct heat until they are blackened and blistered throughout.
  • To roast under the broiler: Preheat the broiler to 400°. Place the chiles in a single layer on a baking sheet and set under the broiler. Roast for 6-8 minutes, or until blackened and skin blisters away from the flesh of the chile.


If you’d rather leave the roasting to us, come out for one of Mollie Stone’s in-store roasting events happening soon throughout the Bay Area. Click here for the dates and locations.

Once the peppers are roasted, choose one of these simple methods to cool them to ensure food safety:

  • Put the roasted chiles in a paper bag and roll the top down to close the bag.
  • Transfer them to a pan and cover with a tight lid.
  • Place the chiles in a bowl and cover with a damp towel or plastic wrap to steam for several minutes.

If you wish to store your Hatch Chiles to enjoy throughout the year ahead, packing and freezing them properly is key. To pack:

  • Unpeeled chiles: Pack whole chiles in plastic bags or wrap in heavy aluminum foil or freezer wrap. Remove all air and seal.
  • Peeled chiles: Whole or diced, peeled chiles can be packaged in glass, metal, or plastic containers. Leave 1/2-inch of head space and seal.

Freeze chiles immediately after packing. Freeze and store at 0°F or below. The chiles need to freeze within 24 hours. For quickest freezing, place packages against freezing plates or coils, and leave space between packages to circulate air freely. Do not overpack the freezer. They can be frozen with or without skin, and will keep for up to 18 months. Chiles peel easily after defrosting.

If you plan to use your chiles right away, peel after roasting.Once the Hatch Chiles are cool enough, they are ready to peel. We recommend always wearing plastic gloves when handling chile peppers. Their skin will peel off easily to reveal the smooth flesh underneath. If they’re not being stuffed, remove and discard the stem and seeds. If you will be stuffing the peppers, leave stem on and cut a lengthwise slit up the one side. Delicately remove the seeds without tearing the chile.

Now you’re ready to enjoy Hatch Chiles in recipes like:

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