Apollo Peppers the New Secretive Super-Hot on the Block


People who eat hot peppers know the sensation well—upon first taste, your upper lip begins to sweat, your mouth literally feels like fire is coming out of it, and your nose begins to run. Then, laughter typically follows as you dash for bread or milk so that you can put out the fire. Anticipated to earn the World’s Hottest Pepper title, the Apollo pepper guarantees this reaction if not an even more visceral one.

Created by Smokin’ Ed Currie, the Apollo pepper is a cross between the Carolina Reaper and Pepper X, the two hottest peppers in existence, according to the Guinness World Records. Because of this cross, the mysterious Apollo pepper may be the world’s hottest pepper, although it has yet to be crowned the title.

Read on to learn more about the Apollo pepper, including:

  • How hot it is
  • Where you can buy it
  • Hot Sauces that use it
  • Ways to use the Last Dab Apollo hot sauce
Photo of super hot peppers ripening on the vine

What are Apollo Peppers?

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Apollo peppers are hybrid peppers combining two of the world’s hottest peppers: the Carolina Reaper and Pepper X.

Not much is known about the Apollo pepper, but what we do know is that Smokin’ Ed Currie created it. The pepper is said to be a fiery combination of the world’s two hottest peppers, both earthy and fruity.

How Hot are Apollo Peppers?

Each year growers attempt to produce a pepper that will be hotter than the one before. In 2007, the Ghost chili held the hottest pepper title, and as late as 2019, Pepper X unofficially and the Carolina Reaper officially had this title.

But what exactly causes the burn? The burning sensation comes from chemical compounds called capsaicinoids, which are odorless, flavorless, and hidden in the white flesh inside of peppers. So the amount of heat a pepper has is linked to the level of capsaicin it contains.

In the quest to outdo each year’s pepper, Smokin’ Ed Currie of Puckerbutt Pepper Company may have created the pepper to beat all three when he crossed the Pepper X with the Carolina Reaper. The result was the Apollo pepper, and since its creation, pepper heads and the culinary world have been set ablaze by its fiery heat.

To understand the magnitude of the heat involved, you have to know how pepper heat is measured, which is in Scoville heat units (SHU). The test is used to measure the amount of capsaicin, the active component that creates the heat. The higher the rating, the hotter the pepper.

The Ghost pepper has a Scoville heat unit of 1,041,427, and the hottest pepper in the world in 2019, the Carolina Reaper, earned 1,641,183 units. By comparison, the Apollo pepper, according to Heat Supply, is expected to pass the three million Scoville unit mark, making it the “Hottest Pepper in the World,” taking the title from the reigning champion, Pepper X (Allegedly, since the Scoville heat unit was never disclosed).

Where Can You Buy Apollo Peppers?

It’s challenging to find Apollo peppers for sale. In fact, the only place I have found it is as an ingredient in a hot sauce. The pepper may not be available for wide-scale distribution yet out of safety concerns. But it’s more likely that the pepper is too new to have reached potential for sale. So stay tuned and we’ll update this post when they are more widely available!

Which Hot Sauces Use Apollo Peppers?

Although finding the pepper itself is hard for the average consumer, there is one hot sauce that is made with this pepper, and it’s aptly named Hot Ones: The Last Dab Apollo Sauce. This sauce has just four ingredients: Apollo Pepper, distilled vinegar, Apollo pepper powder, and Apollo Pepper distillate. And this hot sauce is as expected: extremely hot!

In fact, the Last Dab Apollo Sauce is sure to scorch the tongues of pepper heads worldwide. An official Scoville rating on the pepper has not been provided, but some say it reaches 2.5 million SHUs.

What Does the Last Dab Apollo Hot Sauce Taste Like?

We’ve not yet had the pleasure of trying out this hot sauce ourselves, but one reviewer on The Heatonist describes it as a “cross between a reaper and a scorpion, leaning more toward the scorpion but with about double the heat.” The Heatonist explains that the sweetness is from the Carolina Reaper, and an earthy taste from Pepper X follows the sweetness.

What Does the Last Dab Apollo Hot Sauce Look Like?

The Last Dab Apollo hot sauce is a near-fire shade of orange.

What is the Consistency of the Last Dab Apollo Hot Sauce?

As mentioned before, we have yet to try this one out, but based on the reviews it sounds like the Last Dab Apollo Hot Sauce has a pretty full consistency, that is neither chunky nor watery. It looks quite similar to its cousin the Last Dab Triple X. It’s the perfect consistency for a slow, controlled pour as it comes out of the bottle, which is good since it sounds like a little goes a long way!

What Can You Use the Last Dab Apollo Hot Sauce On?

There are many creative ways to attempt to eat this sauce, but it’s only recommended for the fully committed chili pepper and hot sauce lover. It’s certainly not for beginners, and a tiny amount of the Last Dab Apollo will go an extremely long way.

This sauce has a variety of uses, with the clear first choice being wings. Anything people typically put hot sauce on is fair game for this sauce, so bring on the French fries, oysters, shrimp, chicken, and celery, but it has several other uses too.

Many people use The Last Dab Apollo hot sauce to turn regular dips, hummus, and marinades into exceptional ones that leave guests talking about their meal for days. It also gives Mexican cornbread an incredible kick.

Even if everyone eating the meal is not a fan of hot and spicy dishes, the sauce can still be added to individual bowls of soup or made into individual salad dressing servings. It also works well to add a kick to burgers, pizza, and pork chops because all these dishes can be served individually with sauce added once the food is on the plate. You can basically add it to any dish you’re trying to spice up!

In Drinks

Another exciting way to use The Last Dab Apollo hot sauce is in mixed drinks. From a Bloody Mary to a Spicy Paloma, or a Pineapple Chili margarita, the trick here is to add the hot sauce sparingly because it can quickly become overpowering.  

It can also become the secret ingredient for Mexican hot chocolate for a special Christmas Eve recipe. However, warning guests of the heat is probably a good idea.

Closing Thoughts

People enjoy not only the taste of hot peppers but also the burning sensation. It releases endorphins, and in many friend groups and families, eating the hottest pepper you can stand is a rite of passage that carries enormous bragging rights. If you can stand the Apollo pepper or The Last Dab Apollo sauce, my friend, you have definitely earned those bragging rights.

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