101 Ways to Use Hatch Green Chile + Central Market Festival

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August is one of the most awesome months of the year! Never mind the sizzle of 100 degrees outside or the bittersweet emotions of back-to-school . . . .  it’s freakin’ Hatch green chile season, baby! Hatch Chile Festival at Central Market

Central Market invited me to celebrate at their Hatch Chile Festival  (running until August 22, 2017) and share my love for this famed pepper hailing from New Mexico.  Oh, you KNOW I was into this invitation like a salty tortilla chip in hot salsa! I tasted, I learned tips & techniques, I took home fresh Hatch and packaged products, and today I’m sharing all that and 101 Ways to Enjoy Hatch Green Chile Now & All Year!

Central Market Hatch Chile Festival Let 2011 HAtch green chili tv segment cropme tell you, as a grand-prize cook-off queen and bona fide Hatch head, I thought I knew everything about this slender, but surprisingly fleshy pepper. The season is limited to August, with a few still being found in early September. The fertile Rio Grande valley soil, intense sunlight and cool nights of their growing region (Hatch, NM) is what creates that coveted flavor with a cult-like following. There are different varieties of “Hatch” that range from mild to medium to hot, so not all chiles are created equal. Hatch Chile Festival at Central Market

But I learned something new this year at the Hatch Chile Festival, thanks to a chat with Dave, the Director of Operations at the North Lamar location (the original Central Market opened in 1994). When it comes to Hatch HEAT LEVELS, it’s not just the variety (Sandie, Slim Jim, 1904, etc.) but it’s also the climatic conditions of the growing season. A hot, dry summer produces hotter peppers across the board than a wetter, milder growing season. Also, another fact I’ve figured out on my own, peppers that have started to ripen and turn red are deliver a hotter afterburn when consumed. Also, good to know – Central Market has been working with the same family farm in New Mexico for more than 20 years, so I know I’m getting some the best product around.

jennifer fisher hatch green chile thefitfork.comSo, what does one do when they score a few pounds of fresh Hatch chiles (or 100 pounds like once received as a prize in a cooking contest)? They roast them to kick up the flavor, that’s the Texas, errrrr, New Mexico way! Don’t be intimidated about roasting your own peppers, it’s really a simple task in the oven, over the gas burner or on the grill. Check out the how-to on How to Hatch from Central Market.

How to Roast Hatch Green Chile - Central Market

A great tip I’d like to add about roasting Hatch chiles is to slip the hot peppers into a plastic zip-top bag, seal and let sit on the counter for 20 minutes. This keeps them steaming in the bag and allows the skins to slip off more easily, in my opinion.

Plan on roasting extra Hatch green chiles to keep in your freezer for enjoyment all year long. If you don’t want to bother with the roasting yourself, During the Hatch Chile Festival (Aug 9 – 22, 2017), Central Market is roasting them up daily in their big, outdoor tumbler – the aroma wafting around as you approach the store is divine.  Inside the store, you’ll know you’ve entered the “Land of EnHatchment” with magnificent mounds of Hatch green chiles available for hoarding and a collection of fresh, Central Market-made and packaged foods. Central Market Hatch Green Chile Products

Mild or spicy, Hatch green chiles may just be the most versatile pepper around! Whether you just have a small stash of Hatch or are planning on stocking the freezer to maximum capacity, check out the recipe collection from Central Market as well as consider these 101 Ways to Enjoy Hatch Green Chiles! 

101 Ways to Use Hatch Green Chile - this versatile pepper from New Mexico has meaty flesh and mild to medium-hot heat that lends perfectly to many dishes (from salsas and stews to meats and dessert treats) Learn how to roast them in the oven and grill and get creative ideas on how to enjoy them now and all year long.

Add diced, roasted Hatch chiles:

  1. Queso dip
  2. Guacamole
  3. Hummus
  4. Pico de Gallo
  5. Sautéed zucchini
  6. Cauliflower “Rice”
  7. Creamed corn
  8. Macaroni & Cheese
  9. Broccoli rice casserole
  10. Refried beans
  11. Pimento cheese
  12. Egg salad
  13. Chicken salad
  14. Shrimp salad
  15. Pasta salad
  16. Potato salad
  17. Cole slaw
  18. Kale salad
  19. Ground taco meat
  20. Hamburger Patties
  21. Meatballs
  22. Falafel
  23. Meatloaf
  24. Homemade sausage
  25. Scrambled eggs
  26. Frittata
  27. Rice
  28. Quinoa
  29. Any ancient grain
  30. Mashed potatoes
  31. Cornbread batter
  32. Spoonbread batter
  33. Banana muffin batter (basis of my winning recipe)
  34. Pancake batter
  35. Waffle batter
  36. Biscuit dough
  37. Pizza topping
  38. Quesadillas
  39. Grilled cheese sandwich
  40. Gumbo
  41. Chicken noodle soup
  42. Tortilla soup
  43. Really, soups of any kind
  44. Alfredo sauce
  45. Spaghetti sauce

Use roasted Hatch chiles in sweet-heat desserts & drinks:

  1. Chocolate chip cookie dough
  2. Apple pie
  3. Stir into vanilla ice cream
  4. Brownie batter
  5. Chocolate truffles
  6. Cake balls
  7. Sautéed bananas and honey
  8. Serve atop grilled pineapple w/ yogurt
  9. Peach Cobbler
  10. Add to upside-down cakes
  11. Make a granita
  12. Garnish a margarita
  13. Muddle into a mojito
  14. Kick up lemonade
  15. Add to smoothie

Add pureed roasted Hatch chiles:

  1. Pesto
  2. Enchilada sauce
  3. Ranch dressing
  4. Lemon vinaigrette
  5. Simmer with real maple syrup
  6. Salsa
  7. In a skillet to poach eggs (shakshuka style)
  8. Marinades
  9. Make jam, jelly and preserves
  10. Top an omelet
  11. Top a baked potato
  12. Top grilled steak, chicken, fish
  13. Gazpacho
  14. Ice cube trays and freeze for sauces later

Use whole, fresh (not yet roasted) Hatch chiles:

  1. Stuff with cheese, wrap with bacon, grill
  2. Skewer with pineapple and grill
  3. Skew with fresh veggies and grill
  4. Cut into rings or strips and pickle
  5. Stuff with ground beef and bake enchilada sauce
  6. Bread and deep fry
  7. Make candied chiles
  8. Create a ristra (string up and air-dry chiles)
  9. Use dehydrator, grind and make chile powder
  10. Add olive oil to chile powder (above to make paste
  11. Infuse vinegar
  12. Infuse olive oil
  13. Plant seeds
  14. Dry seeds and use for added heat in recipes
  15. Garnish a margarita
  16. Create a fabulous August centerpiece
  17. Double dog a friend to eat raw
  18. To gift teachers (instead of an apple) on the first day of school

Check out my Hatch Chile Recipes:

  1. Hatch Green Chile Chicken Enchilada Soup
  2. Hot Mess” Hatch Green Burgers (with Squash “Buns”)
  3. Hatch & Queso Fresco Steak Roll Ups with Creamy Cilantro Sauce (coming)
  4. Hatch Salmon Cakes
  5. Hatch Chile Breakfast Egg Bake NEW! 
  6. Savory Hatch Chicken Cheesecake with Avocado Drizzle
  7. Southwestern Blackened Trout with Hatch Green Chile Medley
  8. Hatch-Stuffed Mushrooms
  9. Steak Salad with Roasted Hatch Relish

hatch fest shirt

Don’t miss out on the “Land of EnHatchment” Hatch Chile Festival at Central Market, it’s running from August 9 through 22 this year!

Are you a Hatch fan? Please share your Hatch love in the comments – XOXO, Jennifer 


This post was sponsored by Central Market, I receive product and compensation for my time. However, all opinions and enthusiasm are my own!

8 thoughts on “101 Ways to Use Hatch Green Chile + Central Market Festival

  1. I’ve lived near Hatch for the last few years and, while I am happily moving on for a better experience, I will surely miss green chiles 🙂

    • Good luck in your new adventures . . . you can always roast a few pounds and freeze wherever you go 😉

  2. These peppers remind me of New Mexico. They are INSANELY popular in the summer, especially right now, and whenever I used to spend summers there, they’d be ALLLLLLL over Whole Foods. I am not a spicy kind of person, so I never ate/eat them… But my dad LOVES them!

    • Girl . . I have a grilled salmon salad with fire-roasted hatch ranch on my mind. BTW, even though from New Mexico and we know it, Hatch are another one of those things that we Texans have made bigger than life here — you can’t even go anywhere without seeing it, smelling it, etc.

    • It’s one of those things that’s so easy . . . but you always forget about until you need roasted chile ASAP. That’s why I like to do a #@$%load at one time and freeze 🙂

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