It’s red, it’s powdery, and it adorns Grandma’s potato salad and deviled eggs. We’re talking about paprika, and you might be surprised to learn that it can add more than just a splash of color to your homemade dishes.
Experts say paprika has seven times the amount of Vitamin C contained in oranges because it comes from the fruits, including bell peppers and chili peppers, of Capsicum annuum plants. Hungarian scientist Albert Szent-Gyorgyi first uncovered the Vitamin C content of paprika pepper pods during his research in 1932 and won a Nobel Prize for his discovery five years later.
Today, scientists recognize Vitamin C as a dietary antioxidant that helps to reduce free radicals, which can cause signs of aging and degenerative diseases like cancer. Although large amounts of the spice would be required to satisfy a person’s suggested daily Vitamin C intake, paprika offers an additional source of this nutrient in your diet.
Paprika is made by grinding the dried fruit pods of the Capsicum plant and ranges from sweet-to-mild and mild-to-hot, depending on the plant variety. Hungary, Spain, and U.S. cities California and Texas are well known for producing paprika, but each region grows different types that vary in color and pungency.
Because paprika’s flavor is activated by heat, it is used in making smoked sausages, sauces, soups, and casseroles. Consider our Zesty Italian, Blend 100, for the ultimate Italian Sausage with a hint of paprika. You can find it and the rest of Legg’s signature blends on our Distributor’s Page.