About the Guajillo Chili

Is it sweet, fruity, smoky, or earthy? Many people think of chilies as having one simple purpose – adding heat. So does it really matter which chili you choose for your dish? The answer is – yes! Chilies are not only valuable for adding heat; they are also great for adding tons of flavor to a dish. Continue to read to learn more about what makes the Guajillo Chili a unique chili.

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About the Guajillo Chili

About the Guajillo Chili

The Guajillo chili is one of the most used chilies in Mexico and not without reason. Guajillo chilies are long, dark red and bring a sharp, fruity, medium-spice heat as well as a tangy afternote. They are used in everything from salsas and rubs to stews and guisados (braising liquids) in Mexico, but are less known/used in other cuisines – which is a shame!

Their moderate heat makes them a great fit for more sensitive taste buds (we’re looking at you Northern Europe! In their fresh state Guajillos are called Mirasol chilies. The Mirasol chilies are fairly comparable to a Jalapeño chili, at least when it comes to the capsaicin content.

The Guajillo chili is a complex chili in that its secondary flavors depend highly on the specific strain as well as the soil, climate, and altitude of growth. Most will find it on the sweeter side of chilies, with notes of dried fruits (cranberry) without being a fragrant as the Ancho Chili. In Mexico, it is mainly used in its whole dried form, but elsewhere you can find it in the form of harissa paste, as rubs, or as a powder.


  • Flavor: Fruity flavor with a complex sweetness and tang.
  • Color: Orange to a deeper shiny red color.
  • Heat: Mild to Medium