People interested in growing bell peppers often wonder: when to pick yellow bell peppers. Don’t worry if you are one of them; I will end your curiosity.
Peppers are some of the popular vegetables among home gardeners. They are used in many dishes and come in various sizes, shapes, and colors. Although bell peppers are usually expected to be red, they can also be purple, green, and yellow.
I often pick my yellow bell peppers when they are fully ripe and their vibrant yellow color is noticeable. They are most flavorful when fully ripe and mature.
What are the Signs that Yellow Bell Peppers are Ready for Harvest?
Yellow bell peppers are among the standard mature bell pepper colors. They have a juicy and crisp flash with 3 to 4 lobes and a sweet flavor. They are sweeter than green peppers and are perfect for roasting, sauteeing, and salads.
For a bigger picture, check out the characteristics below:
- Good for: cooking salads and vegetables, pickled, dips, and sauces
- Appearance: blocky shape with 3 to 4 lobes; bright yellow with a thick green stem
- Size: ¼ to 1 pound, including the seeds and stem
- Flesh: Crisp and juicy
- Flavor: sweet and mild
- Served: raw or cooked
- Seed: Small flat studded around the soft white tissue underneath the stem; white to light tan
- Availability: year-round
I usually find overripe or under-ripe bell peppers when visiting grocery stores. So, when I start growing my own, I consume bell peppers with the right ripeness.
Knowing when to pick yellow bell peppers is easy. Below are some tips to know if it’s time to harvest your yellow bell peppers.
Tip 1: Color
In contrast to the common belief, red, orange, and yellow bell peppers are not of different varieties. These shades are green bell peppers that have been ripened.
The color is the most obvious sign that yellow bell peppers are ready for harvest. If you are looking for yellow pepper, wait until it is completely yellow.
Tip 2: Skin
If you are sure about the color, it’s time to consider the bell peppers’ skin. Their skin must be firm and smooth with no blemishes or bruises.
If you see wrinkled skin, it means they are overripe.
Tip 3: Feel
If you are still uncertain after checking the color and the skin, give your yellow bell pepper a gentle squeeze.
Is it slightly soft and not too squishy? Then, harvest them. However, if they feel mushy, put them back.
How to Harvest Yellow Bell Peppers
One of the exciting parts of growing bell peppers is harvest time. The bell peppers become sweeter when left longer on the plant with increased vitamin C. However, do not wait too long once they are mature enough to be picked because it can affect their color, flavor, or texture. Plus, you do not want them to be overripe.
Here are my tips for you to harvest yellow bell peppers like a pro:
- Use sharp scissors or a knife to make a clean cut.
- Do not topple or disturb the plants to prevent knocking off developing fruits or causing any damage.
- Use a clean, dry cloth to wipe excess dirt.
- Store the peppers in the refrigerator’s produce crisper bin.
- Only wash until ready to use them because moisture can make them moldy and rot.
What are the Different Ways to Store Fresh Yellow Bell Peppers?
When it comes to storage, you can store your yellow bell peppers in different ways depending on how you plan to consume them or how long you want to keep them.
Do you plan to use your yellow bell peppers in a week? You can store them in the fridge.
Be sure to dry the peppers. Remember that excess moisture can result in early spoilage. You can place them in a plastic bag with holes, like a mesh bag, for proper air circulation. Then, put them in the crisper drawer with other vegetables since it permits airflow.
If you cut the peppers, placing them in an airtight container with enough paper towels is ideal. This helps absorb moisture.
If I want to use bell peppers soon, I simply leave them out at room temperature for a couple of days. Don’t worry; they will not lose too much freshness.
I recommend placing them in a produce bag before keeping them in a cool, dry place. This helps prevent mold or rotting.
Do not place bell peppers directly in the freezer without removing their stems and slicing off their top. I usually slice into strips or dice my bell peppers about ½ inch wide.
Next, arrange the bell peppers on a baking sheet, ensuring they are on a single layer. Place them in the freezer for an hour. After that, remove them from the freezer and place them in a freezer bag. Before returning them to the freezer, remove the air from the pack by pressing it.
If you want to freeze your bell peppers whole, wrap them in plastic. Then, put them in the freezer bag. In most cases, frozen bell peppers last for 6 months or longer.
Yellow bell peppers are best dried after being sliced. However, if the peppers are smaller, I dry them whole.
When drying bell peppers, place sliced peppers in a dehydrator or oven to the lowest temperature. If you prefer the dehydrator, it will give the best results in less time.
Blanching bell peppers before drying helps preserve their bright yellow color. To do that, place sliced peppers in boiling water for a minute. Then, directly place them in cold water. Once they are dried, place them on a cookie sheet in a single layer.
Dried yellow bell peppers can last for a few weeks.
Canning gives bell peppers the most extended shelf life. This method of preserving involves sealing peppers in glass jars. It involves steaming or boiling water, where heat and pressure kill potentially harmful bacteria. It also helps make a tight sealing since the lids have adhered to the top of the glass jar.
If you plan to can pickled yellow bell peppers, using high-quality vegetable oil is advisable. Yellow bell peppers preserved by canning often last for years.
Pickling is a combination of a recipe and a preservation technique. You can choose from two pickling categories: Lacto-fermentation and vinegar pickling.
Lacto-fermentation uses water and salt to encourage the transformation of the beneficial bacteria. As with vinegar pickling, you must use acetic acid to add a sour tang and preserve the peppers’ flavor.
After pickling, put the peppers in the fridge and enjoy them for a few weeks.
How to Make Charred Yellow Bell Pepper Sauce
One of the best ways to enjoy yellow bell pepper is by making a delicious charred sauce.
- 2 charred, seeded, and chopped yellow bell peppers
- 6 roasted garlic cloves
- ¾ cup of olive oil
- 1/3 cup of rice wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon of honey
- 1 teaspoon of Dijon custard
- Pinch of saffron seeds
- Salt and pepper
- Combine peppers, garlic, honey, mustard, and vinegar in a blender.
- Blend until smooth
- Add the olive oil
- Season with salt and pepper