young pepper seedlings in a square blue container

T-Rex Peppers: An Unusual Superhot

Pepper enthusiasts, have you heard of the T-rex pepper? It’s a hybrid variety that is as unique in appearance as it is intense in heat. Read on to learn everything you need to know about this pepper — its origin, flavor profile, and tips for successfully growing them!

Note: we don’t have any photographs of this exact pepper, but we are growing them in 2023. Check back for updated photos this fall!

Facts about
T-Rex Peppers

Heat level:
Extremely hot
1,000,000 - 1,500,000
Capsicum chinense
North America

What is a T-rex pepper?

T-rex peppers are a hybrid between the Trinidad Douglah and Bhutlah peppers. Like their predecessors, these peppers belong to the capsicum Chinense classification. They look similar to scorpion peppers, but they fold in to create an accordion effect. You can find them in various colors: yellow, chocolate (brown), and red.

T-rex peppers are super hot with a fruity flavor similar to the Trinidad Douglah and Bhutlah. They are commonly used to make hot sauces and have thick flesh perfect for drying and powdering.

How hot are they?

The T-rex pepper is an ultra-hot, as hot as 1.5 million Scoville units (SHU). This puts them in the running as one of the world’s top 10-20 hottest peppers. They are comparable in heat to peppers like the Naga Morich (maximum SHU of 1.5 million), the Butch T (maximum SHU of 1,463,700), and the death spiral pepper (maximum SHU of 1.5 million). 

What do they taste like?

T-rex peppers are known and used primarily for their mind-blowing heat. But don’t be fooled into thinking that these peppers are all heat without taste: they are said to be fruity but not citrusy.

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Where to get T-Rex Peppers?

T-rex peppers are rare, so you won’t find them at the grocery store or even with most specialty growers. They are not processed or used in commercial goods like hot sauces and pepper powders. Growing them at home is the best way to get your hands on this pepper. You can find seeds at Pepper Joe’s or a few other specialty retailers (I have not vetter the quality of other retailers, so shop cautiously!)

Growing tips for T-Rex peppers

Like many other super-hots, T-rex peppers are notoriously tricky to germinate.

Pepper Joe’s claims a 95% germination with their seeds, following precise guidelines: the seeds must be germinated between 80-85° F and, even then, can take up to 6 weeks to sprout. That starkly contrasts with most other peppers, which germinate within 1-2 weeks. So you may want to start these peppers extra early to ensure they have enough time.

Beyond germination, T-rex peppers are similar to most others: they like plenty of light, warm temperatures, and well-draining soil. Peppers are heavy feeders, so you may need to feed them throughout the year with a 5-10-10 fertilizer.

With heat levels sometimes exceeding 1,500,000 SHUs, the T-Rex pepper is not for the faint of heart. But, for those who enjoy a bit of spice in their life, this pepper is an excellent addition to your garden and spice shelf.