How Long Does It Take Peppers To Ripen?


Peppers come in all different shapes, sizes, colors, and flavors. Bell, Jalapeño, Habanero, Banana, Poblano, and Cayenne peppers are just some of the most common types of peppers. Some are sweet, some are spicy, and some are just too hot to handle. Even with all these different characteristics how long does it take peppers take to ripen?

Most peppers will ripen within 60 to 90 days, but hotter peppers can take up to 150 days to become fully ripe. Each species of pepper ripens on a slightly different timeline, this information will be available on the back of your pepper seed packet.

How Long Does It Take Peppers To Ripen On The Vine?

On the vine, most peppers will begin to ripen within about two weeks and will be ripened to perfection within 60 to 90 days. There are a few factors that can alter this process, like the temperature, for example. Warmer temperatures, between 55 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit, will speed up the ripening process, while cooler temperatures, 50 degrees Fahrenheit and below, will significantly slow it down.

Do Peppers Ripen Off The Vine?

Peppers will continue to ripen and mature even after they are taken off the vine. However, they will continue to ripen at a much slower rate than they did when they were on the vine and may not ripen enough to change colors. Peppers can be stored at the exact ripeness they were at when picked off the vine for up to two to three weeks in the fridge with little further ripening.

How Long Does It Take Peppers To Ripen Off The Vine?

Off the vine, peppers will ripen at a slower pace than on the vine. They will gradually continue to ripen over around three days but may not become ripe enough to turn colors after being taken off the vine. Peppers should be left on the vine until they are at a ripe enough state to eat because they will not ripen enough to reach their full flavor potential after they are off the vine.

Be careful, though! It is possible for peppers to become too ripe. Peppers are considered too ripe when they are soft and wilted; in this case, the peppers are not edible and should be disposed of.

How Do You Tell If A Pepper Is Ripe?

You can tell when a pepper is ripe because it will be firm to the touch. Peppers will have turned their specific color when they are fully ripe. Peppers like Habaneros eventually turn a bright orange but while ripening it will go through different stages. Peppers first stage of ripening starts with the color green and transitions to yellow, and then orange or red. Some other key indications that a pepper is ripe include a firm texture, glossy shine, and coloration.

How To Speed Up The Ripening Process For Peppers

There are several methods that can be used to speed up the pepper ripening process. One of the most common and effective ways to ripen unripe peppers is to let them sit in a windowsill, preferably in a warm, natural lit room so that they can have direct exposure to the sun. It is also suggested to put unripe peppers in a paper bag, alongside a ripe apple and a ripe tomato to help quicken the process.

The bag should be stored at room temperature and within a week the pepper should ripen to the proper level. Another effective way to ripen peppers is to leave them attached to their branches and hang them upside down, indoors.

Green , yellow and red bell pepper background

How Long Does It Take For Specific Peppers To Go From Green To Red?

Color-changing speed will depend on the specific type of pepper. Most peppers will experience a few color changes before achieving a shade of red, and all peppers are edible even they are green. However, to achieve optimal flavor and spiciness, peppers should always be ripened to their maximum level.

Here are some examples of the most common pepper types and an estimated time frame of how long it will take them to turn from green to red.

  • Jalapeños: Jalapeño peppers experience a few color changes in their ripening process. They first turn a bright green, then dark green, then develop into black, and later will mature into a deeper red. For Jalapeños specifically, this process will take anywhere between four and six months. The ripening process can be cut short, depending on your particular taste for heat and flavor, but it is recommended to wait until your Jalapeños have reached their fully ripened state before you consume them. And if your goal is to grow the hottest Jalapeños, then you should wait until they turn bright red before harvesting them.
  • Bell Peppers: Bell peppers will be ready to eat while they are green, but will then require an extra two to three weeks to turn red.
  • Cayenne peppers: Cayenne peppers are fully ripe when they are a bright red color and between two and five inches long. They are edible while they are still green but might taste somewhat grassy instead of spicy. Within about two months or approximately 70 days, Cayenne peppers should be fully ripe and ready to offer all the heat you could want.
  • Habanero peppers: Habanero peppers can take up to 120 days to become fully ripe and full flavored.

As you can see, the time it takes to get your peppers to a perfectly ripened and to a full-flavored will vary depending on the specific type of pepper. Some peppers might take a while to reach their fully ripened state, but the delicious, spicy crunch if you’re brave enough to bite in to one, makes the wait totally worth it!

Why Don’t Some Peppers Turn Red?

It is true that not all peppers turn red. The main difference between a red pepper and any other pepper color is that the red pepper is more mature and unable to ripen anymore. Peppers that are still in a color-changing phase might need more time to reach the deep red shade that indicates the ripening process is over. However, some peppers might not turn red at all. Some pepper varieties stay green, even when fully ripe. Other peppers might turn yellow or orange when they are fully ripe.

Jalape_o_Pepper_Lines (4)
Jalape_o_Pepper_Lines (4)

It is important to give your peppers the time they need to reach their fully ripened stage for the best flavor. If you have some peppers that are not turning red, the best thing to do is harvest the red ones and allow extra time for the remaining peppers to reach a higher level of maturity and ripeness.

If there has not been a change and your peppers are the correct texture and have been tended to for the correct amount of time, then it might be safe to assume that the particular peppers you have simply will not turn red. It’s best to research your peppers to learn more about what color they turn when fully ripe, so you know the best time to harvest and enjoy them!

Here are Some of my Favorite Gardening Products and Tools

Thank you for reading this article. I hope you found it helpful for growing some new plants in your home or garden. Here are some products I like that I hope you’ll also find helpful. These are affiliate links, and I am compensated for referring traffic. But in all honesty, these are the exact product that I use or recommend to everyone.

Soil: For high-quality soil, I really like Fox Farm Ocean Forest. I do all my growing in containers and this soil has worked great for me. I like how they use nutrient-rich contents like earthworm castings, bat guano, and composted crab and fish.

Fertilizer: Currently I am using a seaweed-based organic fertilizer call Neptunes Harvest. This is a great milder fertilizer option if you want to use something organic. If you want a more powerful fertilizer, I recommend Fox Farm Liquid Nutrient Trio, lots of people have had great growing success with this product.

Pruning Shears: Pruning shears are one of the most useful gardening tools to have because it’s important to prune your plants to keep them healthy. The pruning shears I recommend are the Gonicc 8’’ pruning shears. I like them because they are built sturdy and work both on bigger and smaller plants, so you don’t need to have multiple pruning shears.

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Supriya

Hi! I'm Supriya. I'm a home cook, bulldog mom, spicy food lover, and founder of The Spicy Trio. I have been a home cook for about 15 years and have been growing plants for the past six years.

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