Sweet paprika substitutes

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Sweet paprika substitutes
Dried and ground sweet, red peppers become sweet paprika. (paprika image by Marek Kosmal from Fotolia.com)

Sweet paprika, according to "The Science of Good Food," comes from ground, dried, red sweet peppers, and most often is used in European dishes such as goulash, poultry, roasted meats, eggs and sauces. Paprika has a mild, peppery flavour. It contributes a brilliant red colour to foods, adding eye appeal to even the palest of foods such as potatoes and egg whites. Substitutes for sweet paprika either replicate the colouring, flavour or both of this sweet spice.

Cayenne Pepper

"The Cook's Thesaurus" recommends substituting cayenne pepper, a ground hot red pepper, for sweet paprika. While the red colouring stays the same, cayenne pepper has a hotter flavour. Depending on your recipe and personal spice tolerance, you might want to decrease the amount of cayenne used to replace sweet paprika.

Sweet paprika substitutes
Cayenne pepper has a hotter flavour but the same colouring as paprika. (medicinal herbs - capsicum frutescens image by Shirley Hirst from Fotolia.com)


Use a spice grinder or mortar and pestle to grind sun-dried tomatoes to a fine powder. Use this as a substitute for sweet paprika to add a slightly tangy, sweet flavour and red colouring to your dishes, but do not expect the same mild pepper flavour from this substitute.

Sweet paprika substitutes
Grind sun-dried tomatoes to substitute for sweet paprika. (sun dried tomatoes image by Sean Wallace-Jones from Fotolia.com)

Ground Aleppo Peppers

Grind Aleppo peppers (also called near eastern peppers) in a spice grinder and use instead of sweet paprika. Their spiciness lies between that of sweet paprika and cayenne pepper.

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