Chile relleno

Chile relleno
Chiles rellenos
Course Entre
Place of origin Mexico
Serving temperature hot
Main ingredients Poblano pepper, egg, cheese
Variations Hatch chile, Anaheim pepper, pasilla, meat
Cookbook: Chile relleno  Media: Chile relleno

The chile relleno (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈtʃile reˈʎeno], literally "stuffed chile"[1]) is a dish in Mexican cuisine that originated in the city of Puebla.


In Mexico, it consists of a stuffed, roasted, fresh poblano pepper (a large and mild chili pepper named after the city of Puebla), sometimes replaced with a Hatch chile, Anaheim, pasilla or even jalapeño chili pepper. In 1858 it was described as a "green chile pepper stuffed with minced meat and coated with eggs".[1]

In current cuisine, it is typically stuffed with melted cheese, such as queso Chihuahua or queso Oaxaca or with picadillo meat made of diced pork, raisins and nuts, seasoned with canella; covered in an egg batter or simply corn masa flour and fried.[2][3] Although it is often served in a tomato sauce, the sauces can vary.

Some versions in Mexico use rehydrated dry chiles such as anchos or pasillas.[2]

United States

In the United States, chiles rellenos are usually filled with asadero, asiago, or Monterey Jack cheese, but can also be found with cheddar or other cheeses.[4] The chile is then dipped in an egg batter and either pan-fried or deep-fried. Chiles rellenos are a popular cuisine in the state of New Mexico, where the Hatch chile is revered for its slender (rather than round) shape and medium-to-hot flavor. In the US, rellenos are typically served with red or green chile sauce or mole.

Variations, which can be seen based on regional tastes or experimentation, include:

  • pecan-encrusted
  • crab-filled
  • inside of a "chile relleno burrito"
  • in a casserole form (which can be more practical for serving groups of people)[5]

A recipe from 1914 (as "chili reinas") is published in a period guidebook to San Francisco restaurants.[6]


In Guatemala, the pimiento pepper is stuffed with shredded pork and vegetables. As the Mexican version, it is covered with egg batter and fried. It is served with tomato sauce or inside a bread bun.

See also


  1. 1 2 Velázquez de la Cadena, Mariano (1858). A dictionary of the Spanish and English languages. New York, New York: D. Appleton & Company. p. 96 via Google Books.
  2. 1 2 Bayless, Rick; Brownson, JeanMarie & Bayless, Deann Groen (2000). Mexico One Plate At A Time. Simon & Schuster. pp. 194–195. ISBN 9780684841861 via Google Books.
  3. Kenyon, Chelsie (2012-04-10). "How to Make Chile Rellenos". Retrieved 2013-01-07.
  4. Curtis, Susan & Ammerman, Nicole Curtis (2006). Southwest Flavors: Santa Fe School of Cooking. Gibbs Smith. p. 131. ISBN 9781586856977. Retrieved 30 November 2017 via Google Books.
  5. Cordero-Cordell, Teresa & Cordell, Robert (2007). Aprovecho: A Mexican-American Border Cookbook. Hippocrene Books. p. 159. ISBN 9780781812061. Retrieved 30 November 2017 via Google Books.
  6. Edwords, Clarence E. (1914). Bohemian San Francisco: Its Restaurants and Their Most Famous Recipes. San Francisco: Paul Elder and Company via Books about California History and Culture.

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