The Ghost pepper emerged as a record setting pepper when it burst onto the scene in 2007, rating at just over 1,000,000 Scoville Heat Units. Although the Ghost pepper is no longer the hottest pepper in the world, it’s still as popular as ever. The name Ghost pepper simply comes from the pepper’s official Indian name, the Bhut Jolokia. Bhut in Indian means “ghost.”
The Ghost pepper, which is wrinkly and pointy, has a very fruity flavor that kicks in almost immediately after consumption. The extreme heat builds up for several minutes and eventually creates a powerful endorphin rush. From 2007 to 2012, Guinness World Records certified that the Ghost pepper was the world's hottest pepper. Eventually the Ghost pepper was overtaken by the Trinidad Scorpion Butch T pepper and the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion as the world’s hottest pepper. In 2013, both of those peppers were taken over by the Carolina Reaper.
Some of the most popular hot sauces in the world feature the Ghost pepper as the main hot pepper ingredient. The recent surge in spicy food and beverage items often cite Ghost pepper as a main ingredient, such as Ghost pepper burgers, Ghost pepper chips, and craft beers that are brewed with Ghost peppers.
There are several different colored strains of the Ghost pepper, including the Red Ghost pepper, White Ghost pepper, Peach Ghost pepper, Chocolate Ghost pepper, and Yellow Ghost pepper. The Ghost pepper is related to the Naga Viper, Dorset Naga, Naga Morich, Chocolate Bhutlah, and Jay’s Peach Ghost Scorpion.