Butternut Squash Curry with Chiltepin Peppers

Frozen butternut squash and chiltepin peppers unite in a deliciously spiced and aromatic coconut-milk based sauce in this spicy, easy, vegan butternut squash curry.

a Big bowl of butternut squash curry

Recently one of my neighbors stopped by with a sandwich bag filled with what he said were “wild chile peppers.” I’d never come across these teeny, tiny, green orb peppers before and was fascinated.

My neighbor assured me that these peppers were not very hot – and their “slight” heat dissipated in seconds after consumption. He also mentioned that he and his wife snacked on handfuls of these little peppers.

So, I rinsed out a few of these teeny tiny chilies and my daughter and I popped a couple of these little green orbs onto our mouths… and… goodness spiciness!

My tastebuds were ASSAULTED by an onslaught of heat that I wasn’t prepared for! It was like I had bitten into a chunk of habanero! By the time I had reached for some coconut milk to drink, my mouth wasn’t on fire anymore.

Up until that moment I thought I hadn’t met anyone (outside of my family) that could out-heat me! WOA! Those teeny-tiny “wild chile peppers” were something else! My neighbor considered them to be mild, but I sure didn’t!

The heat from those peppers did subside quickly – unlike a habanero. I had to know more about these so I headed to Google to look up “wild chile peppers” and found that these little chaps were popularly known as Chiltepin Peppers.

ingredients to make easy butternut squash curry

With a Scoville heat range of 50,000 – 100,000 SHU, these little Chiltepin Peppers are said to be about 24 times as spicy as jalapeños! However , they are not as hot as habaneros.

My neighbor mentioned that other than snacking on these raw, he and his wife also pickled them, and enjoyed them thrown into soups, salsa, and sautés.

tasty vegan butternut squash curry with wild peppers

So, I figured I’d use them in a curry. I wanted to use something that would offset their heat factor a bit. That’s why I opted for butternut squash. I figured the slightly sweet butternut squash would pair beautifully with spicy Chiltepin Peppers.

For this butternut squash curry, I opted to use a couple of packages of frozen butternut squash. I have quite a few packages in my freezer as I love how convenient frozen butternut squash can be. These are already cut up. And, unlike the fresh packages of diced butternut, these frozen ones last for a long while in the freezer.

Easy Butternut squash curry with Chiltepin Wild Chile Pepper

What are the ingredients to make this Butternut Squash Curry?

Other than the frozen butternut squash, I used 10 other ingredients to make this curry, such as:

  1. Onion,
  2. Garlic,
  3. Ginger,
  4. Coconut milk,
  5. Coriander,
  6. Smoked paprika,
  7. Turmeric,
  8. Cumin,
  9. Wild Chiltepin Peppers, and
  10. Cilantro.

Easy Steps to make this curry:

  1. You start off by sautéing the onion just until it begins to brown. 
  2. Then you will add in the ginger and garlic and stir them around so they infuse their flavors with the onion.
  3. Shortly after, you add in the coconut milk, spices, frozen butternut squash, wild Chiltepin Peppers, and cilantro.
  4. Let all the ingredients simmer and then this curry is ready to enjoy.
easy vegan butternut squash curry with wild peppers

Pair this butternut squash curry with Chiltepin Peppers with some roti and some carrot croquettes for a delicious plant based meal. Or, enjoy it with some chicken curry and rice for a satisfying and quick meal.

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a Big bowl of butternut squash curry

Butternut Squash Curry with Chiltepin Peppers

5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 22 minutes
Total Time: 32 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Shashi
Frozen butternut squash and chiltepin peppers unite in a deliciously spiced and aromatic coconut-milk based sauce in this spicy, easy, vegan butternut squash curry.


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 inch piece of ginger 2 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 cup Coconut milk
  • 3 tsp Coriander
  • 2 tsp Smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • 2 – ten oz bags of frozen butternut squash
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup Wild Chiltepin Peppers
  • 2 tbsp Cilantro


  • Peel and chop the onion, garlic cloves, and ginger.
  • Then rinse the Chiltepin peppers and remove the stems.
  • Place oil in a pan over medium heat and add in the onion and saute for about 10 minutes or until the onion starts to caramelize a bit – making sure to stir often so onion does not burn.
  • Add in the chopped garlic and ginger and saute another 5 minutes – stirring often.
  • Add in the coconut milk, coriander, smoked paprika, turmeric, cumin, frozen butternut squash, and wild Chiltepin Peppers. Cover the pan and let simmer over medium heat for 5-7 minutes or until the squash is warm.
  • Remove from heat and toss in the cilantro and stir well.
  • Enjoy with roti or rice.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 227kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 17mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 4g
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Frozen butternut squash and chiltepin peppers unite in a deliciously spiced and aromatic coconut-milk based sauce in this spicy, easy, vegan butternut squash curry.

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  1. This looks so wonderful, I feel like I can taste it through the screen. The squash looks so fragrant and flavorful can’t wait to try this!

  2. Chiltepin peppers? Interesting! I’ve never heard of these, but it does remind me of the time I grew some sort of chile pepper in my garden back when I lived in Baton Rouge. I don’t know what they were – but I couldn’t taste anything for about an hour afterwards. Haha! Great idea to use these in a butternut squash curry. The heat would be tasty and quite welcome in a chilly day!

  3. What a delicious looking curry! I’m a butternut squash fan so will bookmark this to give it a try. Those chillis sound insane!!

  4. I need to try those little cute chilli peppers! The curry looks very yummy and butternut squash is one of my favourite Fall veggies.

5 from 3 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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