Paprika is a mild spice made from one ingredient — dried chili peppers. It originated in South America but is now common throughout many parts of the world. Its mild flavor and rich, vibrant color make paprika a popular spice choice for cooking. It can be store-bought, but making it at home is a wonderful way to enjoy fresh paprika.

Things You'll Need

Choose your peppers. Any kind of chili pepper can be used to make paprika, but for a deep red paprika spice, use paprika chilis. Choose small peppers for quicker drying time.

Dry chili peppers. Preheat oven to 100 degrees Fahrenheit and place whole chili peppers on an ungreased baking sheet. Leave the oven door ajar, as chili peppers need air circulation to dry properly. Bake the peppers until shriveled and crisp. Allow to cool.

Crush peppers using a spice grinder or blender. Grind slowly and stop when the paprika resembles soft red powder.

Properly store your paprika in airtight jars or containers.


  • Air-drying can be done by hanging peppers upside down in a dark, warm place for several months.