Produce Spotlight on Bell Peppers
Bell Peppers, also known as sweet peppers, come in a rainbow of colors and a range of sizes. These low-calorie vegetables are high in vitamins A and C and are a good source of potassium, folic acid, fiber, and beta carotene.
Shopping for Bell Peppers
Select bell peppers that feel firm and heavy for their size and have a glossy shine. If the stems are still on, they should be firm and light green. Avoid peppers that are dull in color, have brown spots, feel soft to the touch, or have wrinkled skin. Massachusetts-grown bell peppers are available from July through October.
Green – unripe peppers that are picked before maturing; long shelf life; available locally before other colors of bell peppers; slightly mild, bitter taste.
Orange, Yellow and Purple – on the vine longer than green peppers; have more nutritional value and a sweeter flavor than green peppers.
Red – on the vine the longest; highest in beta carotene and vitamins A and C; sweetest bell pepper.
Storage and Preparation
- Rinse fresh peppers under cold running water before preparing.
- Store unwashed whole peppers in a plastic bag or container in the refrigerator for up to five days. Refrigerate washed and cut peppers in a container and use within two days.
- To freeze peppers, wash and chop or slice peppers. Place in a labeled freezer bag and use within eight months.
- Slice and serve with a creamy dressing, hummus, or white bean dip.
- Add to an egg dish or use as a pizza topping.
- Add raw to a salad, sauté them in a stir-fry, or incorporate into soups, curries, and pasta dishes.
Bell Pepper Math
1 large bell pepper =
1¼ cup sliced =
1 cup diced
Using Locally Grown Produce
For recipes featuring fruits and vegetables, visit our website https://extension.umass.edu/nutrition/recipes/. To locate places to buy local produce, visit https://www.mass.gov/orgs/massachusetts-grownand-fresher.