5 Substitutes For Sports Peppers You Should Try Today

Sports peppers are beloved by a lot of people, but sometimes they can be quite hard to find.

If you have a recipe all ready to go, but you can’t get hold of these peppers, you might be panicking a little bit trying to work out what to do. 

Well, fear not! We have put together a list of 5 substitutes for sports peppers that you should try today! When you cant get hold of the real thing, these substitutes will work just as well.

Don’t let the lack of sports pepper ruin your meal plans! 

5 Substitutes For Sports Peppers You Should Try Today

What Is A Sports Pepper? 

A sports pepper is a type of chili pepper that is usually used as a condiment. They can range in color from green to red, and they have a pointy end while the pepper itself is very small and narrow. 

As it is a type of chili pepper, you can expect some spice but it also has a lovely hint of sweetness. They can be eaten in a lot of different ways, but the most popular ways include sliced, whole, and pickled. 

Lots of foods are also filled with healing properties, and sports peppers are no exception. They actually help if you have a sore throat and they also relieve congestion. 

Because they are usually used as a condiment, this makes them very versatile, so they can be used in a lot of different recipes. 

5 Of The Best Sports Pepper Substitutes

Now you know what a sports pepper is, let’s take a look at 5 of the best substitutes you can use if you don’t have the real thing available to you.

Each of these substitutes is fantastic in its own right, so don’t be afraid to experiment with them. Typically, any other pepper will work, but make sure they are of the pickled variety! 

1. Pickled Jalapeño Peppers

Pickled Jalapeño Peppers

If you didn’t know what a sports pepper was, then you’re definitely going to know what a jalapeno pepper is! These popular peppers are filled with spicy heat and could be just the added kick that you are looking for. 

They are a bit spicier than sports peppers, but if you’re a fan of spice that is probably music to your ears! They will really bring out the flavors in your dish and make for the perfect substitute. 

Though they are typically used for Mexican-inspired dishes, they can work well pretty much any other type of food too! 

2. Pickled Serrano Peppers

Pickled Serrano Peppers

Pickled serrano peppers are also great if you want a bit of spice added to your dish. Though serrano peppers are actually a bit harder to find than sports peppers, if you can get hold of them, they are definitely worth it! 

They are quite a bit spicier than sports peppers though, so bare that in mind if you do use them as a substitute.

However many sports peppers you were going to use, make sure you cut the quantity down by at least half when you use these serrano peppers. 

To reduce the heat a bit, you can remove the seeds and ribs from the peppers. 

3. Pickled Pepperoncini

Pickled Pepperoncini

Pepperoncini peppers are a bit bigger and thicker than sports peppers, but because both of these peppers belong to the same species, they have very similar heat levels.

This is a great substitute for anyone who doesn’t want the spice levels to be too hot. 

A bit like sports peppers, pepperoncini is extremely versatile and can be used in various dishes without too much hassle. 

Because these peppers are pickled, the heat won’t be as intense, so you don’t have to worry about consuming something that has too much heat. 

4. Chipotle Peppers

Chipotle Peppers

These chipotle peppers are very similar to jalapenos, in fact, they are jalapenos, but they are a dried, smoky version.

They are also a bit milder than standard or pickled jalapeno peppers, so if you prefer something milder, this is a great substitute for you to try. 

You can try them in their dry form or their pickle form, either way, they will taste great! 

They are the perfect blend of sweet and spicy, and they also have a delicious tangy undertone.

You will usually find chipotle peppers used as a main ingredient in Chipotle Chili seasoning, so if you’re wondering what they taste like, try some Chipotle Chili seasoning first! 

5. Guajillo Chilli

Guajillo Chilli

Another type of Mexican pepper, guajillo chilis are usually used as a seasoning, but it can be used for whatever you were going to use the sports peppers for. They are very versatile and packed with flavor. 

They are just about as spicy as the jalapeno, so this is another substitute that will better suit the spice lovers out there. They have a very fruity aroma and they work especially well with sauces, dips, salsas, and sausages. 

While you can try them in their dry form, have a look around for a pickled variety too! 


Sometimes getting hold of ingredients can be a real pain, but this is why having a good substitute on hand can save a lot of time and stress. 

Each of these sports pepper substitutes works just as well as the real thing, so don’t be afraid to experiment with them.

And remember, the dry forms of all these peppers work great, but if you really want to go the extra mile, try the pickled versions!

5 Substitutes For Sports Peppers You Should Try Today

5 Substitutes For Sports Peppers You Should Try Today

Recipe by Jenna

are you looking for a sports pepper substitute but you don’t know where to start? Click here to learn about 5 substitutes you should try today!

Course: Substitutes
5 from 1 vote


  • Pickled Jalapeño Peppers

  • Pickled Serrano Peppers

  • Pickled Pepperoncini

  • Chipotle Peppers

  • Guajillo Chilli


  • Decided on what substitute you need
  • Pick a substitute from the list above
  • Read what you need to substitute with
  • Create the recipe and enjoy

Recipe Video

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