ed currie holding up a pepper X pepper.

Pepper X: Unveiling the New Reigning Champion of Spice

Pepper X has recently scorched its way to the top, now reigning as the hottest pepper in the world. Its newfound title has set the spicy community abuzz, making it a trending topic among spice enthusiasts and food adventurers. This fiery crown holder has not only sparked curiosity but has also incited a fiery challenge for those daring to experience its unparalleled heat.

Facts about
Pepper X

Heat level:
Extremely hot
2,500,000 - 3,180,000 SHU
Capsicum chinense
North America

What Makes Pepper X the Hottest Pepper in the World?

When we talk about the hottest pepper in the world, we are usually referring to the record in the Guinness Book of World Records. This record is measured using Scoville Heat Units (SHU), a scale that gauges the concentration of capsaicin, the chemical responsible for the spicy sensation. Pepper X proudly stands at an average SHU rating that dwarfs that of well-known scorchers like the Carolina Reaper and Ghost Pepper, establishing its fiery supremacy in the world of peppers.

However, because of the bureaucracy of official record validation, peppers can be around for years before taking the official crown. There have been discussions around the Pepper X since 2017 or earlier, and it just took the title in October 2023.

fingers holding a small, gnarled brownish-yellowish pepper
Image credit: blameitonwill CC BY-SA 4.0

What Does Pepper X Taste Like?

While Pepper X does carry a semblance of an earthy flavor, the overwhelming heat it packs tends to overshadow any other taste nuances. Unlike other super hot peppers like the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion or Carolina Reaper which might offer a fruity or sweet undertone, Pepper X is largely about the heat, setting a new bar for extreme spiciness while offering a straightforward, blistering encounter for the palate.

How Hot is the Pepper X Exactly?

Pepper X boasts a scorching Scoville rating that catapults it to the top of the spiciness chart, surpassing other hot peppers with its fiery demeanor. While different sources state slightly varying Scoville Heat Units (SHU) for Pepper X, the figures range from approximately 2.5 to 3.18 million SHU​.​ In comparison, the Carolina Reaper, the former record-holder, has a SHU range of 1.4 to 2.2 million, with a median heat level of 1.8 million SHU​. The Ghost Pepper, another tear-inducing contender, falls significantly lower on the scale.

The heat of Pepper X is not just a number but a fiery reality attested to by brave souls who have dared to taste it. Ed Currie, the creator of Pepper X, experienced a heat that lingered for three and a half hours before succumbing to severe cramps. Other descriptions include sensations that could singe your airways and numb your skin akin to medical-grade anesthesia, delivering an “immediate, brutal heat” upon consumption​.

What Happens If You Eat a Pepper X?

Indulging in a Pepper X is not for the faint of heart. The moment it touches your palate, a blazing inferno of heat unfolds, invoking a bodily SOS. The capsaicin concentration in Pepper X, like other superhot peppers, can lead to nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and even severe cramps as your body reacts to the fiery invasion​. The experience is akin to a trial by fire, testing the limits of your spice tolerance and bodily resilience.

Can Pepper X Kill You?

While there have been no reported fatalities from consuming Pepper X, the risks associated with ingesting such fiery peppers are non-negligible. The extreme heat can cause significant discomfort and potentially dangerous reactions, especially in individuals not accustomed to spicy foods, those with gastrointestinal issues, or those who are genetically more sensitive to capsaicin​. Overindulgence in such peppers can lead to serious health issues. For instance, in extreme cases, the irritation from the capsaicin can cause severe damage to the esophagus, as seen in a case where a man suffered a tear in his esophagus after consuming a ghost pepper. It’s a stark reminder of the fiery fury that superhot peppers like Pepper X can unleash, necessitating a cautious approach for those daring to venture into this scorching territory.

The cautionary tale extends to spicy challenges involving extremely hot peppers. Recent incidents, such as teenagers falling seriously ill or even dying from the One Chip Challenge, underscore the potential dangers lurking in the guise of a dare​​.

Pepper X vs. Carolina Reaper

The fiery feud between Pepper X and the Carolina Reaper is a spicy saga of relentless pursuit for the capsaicin crown. Pepper X, with its Scoville rating ranging from approximately 2.5 to 3.18 million, outshines the Carolina Reaper’s heat range of 1.4 to 2.2 million SHU, establishing a new pinnacle of piquancy​. While the Carolina Reaper offers a fruity flavor with a hint of cinnamon, Pepper X is more straightforward in its scorching mission, with an earthy taste that’s overshadowed by its intense heat. Cultivation-wise, both peppers are the product of meticulous breeding, with Ed Currie, the mastermind behind both fiery fruits, dedicating over a decade to perfecting the blistering blaze of Pepper X.

Pepper X vs. Apollo Pepper: A Fiery Rivalry

Pepper X and Apollo Pepper are burning examples of humanity’s endless quest to push the boundaries of heat. Though the exact Scoville rating of Apollo Pepper is shrouded in mystery, it’s speculated to be a fierce contender against Pepper X. Both peppers come with a veil of mystique, their extreme heat levels igniting curiosity and challenge among the spice-savvy community. The taste profile of Apollo Pepper is as enigmatic as its heat, contrasting with Pepper X’s earthy yet overwhelmingly spicy taste. The cultivation details of these peppers are closely guarded, adding to the allure and intrigue surrounding these fiery foes.

Where Can You Buy Pepper X and Pepper X Seeds?

Pepper X has been on a sort of lockdown, with few commercial products available for purchase. Seeds are still completely unavailable for purchase.

Currently Puckerbutt Pepper Company has a monopoly over Pepper X products. They have 12 different hot sauces available using the Pepper X, which you can order on their website.

Because the Pepper X has officially taken the crown of hottest pepper in the world, we expect seeds and products to become available by 2025.

The Legacy of Pepper X

Pepper X isn’t merely a pepper; it’s a statement in the ceaseless pursuit of extreme heat. Its emergence has rekindled the fiery culture of chasing spiciness, pushing the boundaries of what’s possible in the realm of capsaicin. As it stands, Pepper X reigns supreme, but the ever-evolving quest for spicier breeds suggests that its title may one day be challenged. The potential contenders lurking in the shadows, coupled with the relentless spirit of cultivators and the spicy community, hint at an ongoing spicy saga awaiting the next capsaicin crown challenger.

Pepper X has emerged as a fiery titan, marking a spicy milestone in the world of capsaicin. Its extreme heat, elusive seeds, and the mystique surrounding its creation and availability have fanned the flames of curiosity and challenge among spice aficionados. As Pepper X basks in its blazing glory, the spicy community eagerly anticipates the next chapter in the relentless pursuit of heat.

Share your thoughts about the Pepper X in the comments and let us know if you would try it!