Air Fryer Japanese Blistered Shishito Peppers [+ Video]

Air Fryer Japanese Blistered Shishito Peppers [+ Video]

Easy Blistered Peppers 虎皮辣椒
Easy Blistered Peppers 虎皮辣椒

Sweet and Smoky Air Fried Japanese Blistered Shishito Peppers make a great low carb keto appetizer. Happy Hour just got better!

Air Fried Blistered Shishito Peppers

Whether you are watching your calories, following a low carb or keto way of life, paleo, vegetarian, vegan, Weight Watchers, this Blistered Shishito Peppers recipe is for you.

Super easy to make and so much fun to eat.

Cast of Ingredients for Blistered Shishito Peppers

With only a few ingredients and an air fryer, you can make this delicious Japanese appetizer. I recommend the Ultrean 8.5 Quart Air Fryer, as it has a nice big basket and cooks very evenly.

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Ingredients for Air Fryer Blistered Shishito Peppers

  • Shishito Peppers
  • Oil
  • Salt of Choice

If you enjoy blistered peppers, check out my post on How To Roast Large Peppers [Chili, Poblano, Jalapeńo, Bell] on the stove!

Olive Oil is Add to Raw Shishito Peppers

What are Shishito Peppers?

  • Shishito peppers are small, very mild peppers from Japan. The flavor is slightly smokey and slightly sweet and very mild.
  • However, about one in ten Shishito peppers may be hot.
  • Shishito peppers are bright green, slender and a bit wrinkly with a thin skin.

Add Shishito Peppers to HOT Air Fryer

Where to Buy Shishito Peppers

  • Your best bet in finding Shishito Peppers is at an Asian market. Regular popular grocery stores don’t generally carry Shishito peppers. Japanese markets most definitely will carry the peppers.

Pro Tip: If you cannot find Shishito peppers, Spanish padron peppers are very similar to Shishito peppers and can be used in place of Shishito peppers.

  Air Fryer Shishito Peppers

Shishito Peppers will Quickly Blister White Retaining the Bright Color

Are Shishito Peppers Hot?

  • Most Shishito Peppers are under 150 Scoville heat units.
  • Shishito peppers are hotter than bell peppers and much milder than jalapeno peppers, which are more than twice as hot.

Do you Remove Seeds from Shishito Peppers?

It is not necessary to remove the seeds from Shishito peppers. The seeds are not necessarily what determines the heat in a pepper, it is the inner rib of the pepper that contains the fiery spice. What is great about Shishito peppers is that they are so mild, there is no need to remove the rib or the seeds.

Perfectly Cooked Blistered Shishito Peppers

When using an air fryer, use the highest temperature possible. In order for the peppers to retain the bright green color, they need to cook for the shortest time possible.

This is why the air fryer needs to be very, very hot before dumping the oiled Shishito peppers into the air fryer basket. If your air fyer is not preheated, it would take longer for the peppers to blister and the peppers will over cook and become quite soft.

In the photo above, you can see that the Shishito peppers are nicely blistered, but still puffy and green.

How to Serve Blistered Shishito Peppers

Hot and fresh is the best way to eat Shishito peppers!

How to Serve Blistered Shishito Peppers

  • Shishito Peppers are very simple. They are best served with salt and a squeeze of lime.
  • While plain sea salt and Pink Himalayan Salt are fantastic on Blistered Shishito Peppers, it is easy to change up the flavoring using flavored salt.

Instant Pot Japanese Chicken Curry pairs really well with the peppers. The recipe cooks quickly all in one pot. As you are enjoying your happy hour, your main course can be cooking.

Grind Your Favorite Smoked Salt Over Hot PeppersGrind Favorite Smoked Salt Over Blistered Shishito Peppers

Best Flavored Salt to use on Blistered Shishito Peppers

The best salt to grind over Blistered Shishito Peppers is the salt YOU like to use. Here are a few of my favorites, which pair very nicely with the peppers.

  • Applewood Salt
  • Cherrywood Salt – cherrywood salt is my favorite for this recipe as it adds a smoky sweetness.
  • White Truffle Salt
  How to Roast Shishito Peppers in the Oven

Squeeze Fresh Lime Juice Over Blistered Peppers

A generous squeeze of fresh lime juice or lemon juice adds a nice acid flavor to Air Fried Shishito Peppers. The blistered peppers will absorb the flavor of the lime juice.

Can Shishito Peppers be Frozen?

  • They don’t really freeze well, so for this recipe, the answer is no.
  • Now, if you plan on using Shishito peppers for cooking things like soups and stews, then dice up the peppers and freeze them in small portions.
  • When ready to use, just pop some frozen or thawed peppers into your stir fry, soup or stew.

Pop a Blistered Shishito Pepper into the Mouth

Blistered Shishito Peppers are best enjoyed with a group of friend and a cold drink in hand. In Japanese restaurants, Saki is served with this delicious appetizer.

Open up and say AHHHHHHH!

Taste the Saltiness and Lime First

Blistered Shashito Peppers make a wonderful appetizer. Follow up the appetizer with a main course of my delicious Pressure Cooker Japanese Beef Curry Stew and a side of Pressure Cooker Mr. Yoshidas Chicken Rice or Instant Pot Chicken Fried Quinoa “Rice”.

Tips and Tricks for Blistered Shishito Peppers

  1. Preheat air fryer before you start prepping Shishito peppers.
  2. When using an air fryer, it is best to make Blistered Shishito Peppers in small batches.
  3. Use the highest temperature available.
  4. They should be arranged in a single layer. This will allow them to blister evenly without softening the peppers too much and over cooking.

Air Fried Blistered Shishito Peppers

More Delicious Appetizers to Make:

  • Instant Pot Chicken Lettuce Wraps
  • Air Fryer Feta Psiti Greek Baked Feta Hors d’oeuvre
  • Air Fryer Garlic Mushrooms Low Carb Keto + Video
  • Hot Onion Cheese Dip Bread Bowl {Appetizer}

Kitchen Equipment and Essentials

  • Ultrean 8.5 Quart Air Fryer – nice and big!!!!
  • Silicone Coated Tongs
  • Rachael Ray Stoneware EVOO Oil Dispensing Bottle
  • Microplane Artisan Course Grater

Caring is sharing! If you would like to support This Old Gal, please share this recipe on Social Media, so that I can continue to bring you more wonderful recipes!

If you share a picture of something you make from our blog, tag it with #thisoldgalcooks so we can see it. We might feature it on Instagram! It makes my day when I see you’ve made one of our recipes!

  How To Pan Roast Japanese Shishito Peppers

Here is the handy printable recipe:


  • 8 ounces Shishito Peppers
  • 2 teaspoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

For Topping

  • 1/2 teaspoon Applewood Smoked Sea Salt (Cherrywood Smoked Salt, Pink Himalayan Salt, or your favorite)
  • Fresh Lime or Lemon
  • Asiago or Parmesan Cheese grated over top

Recommended Products


  • Preheat air fryer at 400 or 390 degrees. [Use the highest setting available]
  • Place Shishito peppers into colander and use water to rinse off any dirt and debris.
  • Using a dish towel or paper towel, blot dry the Shishito peppers well and place into medium mixing bowl.
  • Drizzle olive oil over the peppers and mix well, so that all pepper are coated in the oil.
  • Place Shishito peppers into pre heated air fryer basket and spread them out evenly.
  • Cook at 400 degrees for 6-7 minutes or 390 degrees for 7-8 minutes, shaking the basket half way through.
  • Remove blistered Shishito peppers to a plate and sprinkle on salt.
  • Cut lemon or lime into wedges and squeeze onto peppers.
  • Serve as is or with sweet chili sauce (my favorite) for dipping.



Smoky Salt Flavors

By simply changing up the salt, you can create wonderful flavors.

  • Applewood Salt
  • Cherrywood Salt – cherrywood salt is my favorite for this recipe as it adds a smoky sweetness.
  • White Truffle Salt


  1. Preheat air fryer on highest temperature before you start prepping Shishito peppers.
  2. Always arrange peppers in single layer so that the peppers will blister evenly without softening the peppers and over cooking.
  3. Use flavored salts to change up the flavoring.

About Freezing Shishito Peppers

  • They don’t really freeze well, so for this recipe, the answer is no.
  • however, if you want to use diced Shishito peppers for cooking, then dice up the peppers and freeze. Use diced frozen pepeprs in stir fry, soup or stew.


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Air Fryer Japanese Blistered Shishito Peppers

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