There’s a new pepper on the scene spicing things all the way up. According to the Associated Press, it’s called Pepper X, and it was recently awarded the honor of being the hottest pepper in existence by the Guinness Book of World Records. It left the previous record-holder, the Carolina Reaper, sweating bullets.
The Carolina Reaper was created by hot pepper expert Ed Currie in 2013, and valiantly held the title since. According to Pepperscale, its heat level ranges from 1,400,000 to 2,200,000 Scoville heat units. To give you an example of how Scoville level is measured, a jalapeño pepper only comes to 5,000 units, while habanero reaches 100,000 — habanero held the record almost 25 years ago.
Simply put, a habanero is like eating watermelon compared to the Carolina Reaper, which must mean that Pepper X, also created by Currie, is a real face-melter. “I was feeling the heat for three-and-a-half hours. Then the cramps came,” Currie remarked of his taste test. “Those cramps are horrible. I was laid out flat on a marble wall for approximately an hour in the rain, groaning in pain.”
Pepper X more than doubles the Scoville level of Carolina Reaper. Its record is an average of 2.69 million heat units. Fun fact: Bear spray measures in at 2.2 million Scoville units. Currie has been working on the new scorcher since setting his last world record. He wanted to create a pepper that was ridiculously hot but carried a bit of sweetness.
It’s greenish-yellow in color, and a crossbreed of a Carolina Reaper and a “pepper that a friend of mine sent me from Michigan that was brutally hot,” according to Currie. The hot pepper master ultimately wants to demonstrate the benefits of the feeling you get after eating them. He does, however, caution adventurous heat-seekers from playing around with Carolina Reaper and Pepper X.
During his interview with The Associated Press, he asks rhetorically, “Is this the pinnacle?” Then answers his own question, “No, it’s not the pinnacle.”