green chile rellenos

I think my brother-in-law is a fairly typical New Mexican – he likes green chile on pizza, on his grilled cheese sandwiches, and in his burgers. I mostly just want it in Mexican food. (Mostly – it is great in burgers.) It’s a good thing too, because the Hatch green chile supply is limited out here in Pennsylvania. My mom is kind enough to send me a box of fresh green chiles every fall, and then I have to dedicate the better part of a day to roasting, peeling, and seeding them. My mom sends a box to my brother in Iowa as well, and we agreed that it’s a lot of work for basically one gallon-size zip-top bag of chiles.

Obviously it’s worth it in the end, or we wouldn’t do it. Dave and I have had green chile huevos twice since the shipment of green chiles came a few weeks ago, and we agree that it’s our favorite breakfast. The only other thing I’ve made with them so far is these chile rellenos, although I’m looking forward to green chile chicken enchiladas, cream of green chile chicken soup, green chile burgers, and a lot more huevos.

Chile rellenos aren’t something I tend to order at restaurants, but Dave likes them and they really are better than I usually expect. They’re simply cheese stuffed in a whole (roasted and peeled) chile, dipped in cornmeal batter, then fried. They’re usually served with green chile sauce, but I didn’t want to make any, and I didn’t miss it. Without the sauce, the green chile, cheese, and batter get equal billing, instead of the green chile dominating.

I chopped most of the green chiles before I froze them, but I have one more set of non-chopped chiles in the freezer waiting to be made into rellenos. They were so good this time, I’m definitely looking forward to making them again.

(I just realized that, although I keep talking about green chiles, they look more red in the picture above.  That’s what happens went they’re shipped across the country before they can be roasted – they turn from green to slightly red.  I haven’t noticed a difference in flavor though.)

Green Chiles Rellenos (Stuffed Green Chiles) (adapted from Simply Simpatico, from the Junior League of Albuquerque, New Mexico)

If Hatch green chiles aren’t available, poblanos are supposedly more authentic anyway.

1 quart vegetable or peanut oil
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup cornmeal
1 cup milk
2 eggs
10 green chiles, roasted and peeled* (canned chile may be used)
10 ounces Longhorn cheese or Monterey Jack cheese

1. Heat the oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat to 350-375 degrees.

2. Combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt. Blend milk with egg, then combine milk and eggs mixture with the dry ingredients.

3. Cut cheese into slices ½-inch thick and the length of the chile. Make a small slit in chile just big enough to insert cheese.

4. Dip stuffed chiles in batter, using a spoon to coat the chile with batter. (I didn’t want to turn the chile in the batter because I was worried about the cheese coming out.)

5. Add 5 battered chiles to hot oil. Fry until first side is golden brown, 2-3 minutes, then turn the chiles over and fry until the second side is golden brown. Drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Serve.

*To roast chiles, grill or broil them until the skin is spotty black (blacker than you think it should be probably), then put them in a covered bowl or a bag for 10 minutes or so. After that, the skin should slip off easily. Be sure to leave the stem attached for rellenos.


  1. Those look delicious! I was thinking of making chiles rellenos before, now I am definitely going to make them!

  2. These sound tasty and I may need to try them with Peruvian Yellow Peppers. Yum!

  3. These look so delicious! I love Mexican food and have been trying more Mexican recipes at home, so I’ll have to try these!

  4. Heyyy! I just had my first taste of green chile rellenos last week! Yours look so delicious!

  5. Well, your hard work pays off! They look great and I’m sure were as delicious.
    What a nice tribute to your mom’s delicate attention.
    I saw a similar recipe on tv the other day, and surely will try it during winter time… when hot food is a must!

  6. This makes me miss the southwest SO much! My dad loves chile rellenos, so maybe I’ll make these for him some day.

  7. These look SO good. I have never made chile rellenos before but I definitely love eating them 🙂

  8. Those chilies look really tasty!

  9. I attempted chile rellenos the other day–and my chiles (poblanos) fell apart after roasting (mostly when I was taking off the skins). I ended up with a sort of chile relleno casserole. Any tips?

  10. Melinda says:

    Heads up! I am a misplaced New Mexican living in PA. I have been very lucky to have found anahiem peppers for sale at the Farmers Market in Scranton. I buy up all I can find and roast them and freeze them. Wal Mart also carries them most of the time for $2.68 Lb…pricey but worth it when you are jonesing. This looks like a great rellano recipe so I am trying it tonight. The only thing different I would do is insert the cheese through a hole in the bottom of the chili so it does not melt out all over the place during cooking. Wish me luck!!!

  11. Ellen M says:

    i just returned from a trip to Alburquerque, Santa Fe and Taos. Had the best chili rellenos at Lamberts Retaurant in Taos. The crust was crispy and the peppers were long and skinny. Any I’ve had in the Midwest, the peppers are short and wide and the batter is definitely not crispy. Will have to try this recipe..

  12. Donald says:

    You do this the hard way! I grew up in New Mexico but retired near Asheville, NC. My sister sends me a big box, about 7 gallon size bags once I roast them. I roast them and freeze immediately. They peel a lot easier when they are half frozen. Also, the best NM way is not to make a batter. Depending on the no. of rellenos, just microwave a bag til you can pull apart the no. you want. Then run warm water til just the outside is thawed and peel the skin. Then put aside to thaw, then continue with the rest. Once thawed, remove the seeds or leave a few in for heat if you like them hot. Insert Jack or Mozzarella (Asedero is best but haven’t seen it outside NM) into each chilie and roll with flower and glue them together. and put in the freezer for 10 min. Then take 3-4 eggs and separate the yokes from the whites. Beat the whites till stiff and then fold the yolks in and mix gently. Heat the oil (best in a big iron skillet) and put each flowered, stuffed green chilie into the egg mixture and put into the oil gently. Continue until all are cooked. Enjoy!


  1. […] Batter for rellenos (courtesy of CrumblyCookie): […]